Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Rachel Harper

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Rachel Harper

Article excerpt

Brass Ankle Blues tells the story of one summer in the life of Nellie Kincaid, a 15-year-old girl trying to find her way in the world. Her parents have just split up, and Nellie and her father take a road trip to the family's vacation home in Minnesota. Rachel M. Harpers first novel is published by Touchstone.

Like Nellie's, your father is a black poet, and your mother is a white woman from Minnesota. How much of Brass Ankle Blues is autobiographical?

In many ways it is autobiographical, but not because of Nellie. Nellie is one aspect, sure. But so many of the characters, so many of the dynamics, are things that I've struggled with. Every character is me.

One of the novel's themes is the spaces in between: black and white, childhood and adulthood, compassion and anger. Is that one of the dynamics that you've struggled with? …

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