A Sky the Color of Chaos: A Memoir

M.J. is the author of A Sky the Color of Chaos. (Order an autographed copy here!)

A Sky the Color of Chaos chronicles M.J.’s childhood during the turbulent rise and fall of Haiti’s President-Priest, Jean-Bertrand Aristide – a time of nightly shootings, home invasions, robberies, and the burning of former regime members in neighborhood streets. During the late 1980s and 90s, from when M.J. was eight-years-old to eighteen, Haiti’s government changed forms eight times; the Haitian people endured fraudulent elections, three military coups, a crippling embargo, and a United Nations occupation.


In A Sky the Color of Chaos the social and political upheaval merely serve as the background for the more personal drama playing out inside M.J.’s own home. Her brooding father rapidly oscillates between exuberant optimism and cynical pessimism. While loving and affectionate, he demands respect and often enforces his will with violence. She is simultaneously drawn to him and fearful of him. Needing a sense of security when outside the home, and having her father’s temperament, M.J. carries knives while still a school girl and bullies her schoolmates.

Her father’s hot-blooded nature and unpredictable moods amplify her fevered need to escape a homeland where random violence and bloodshed are commonplace. During puberty, her desires for love, security, and escape drive her into the arms of dangerous men. But through her schemes to leave Haiti, she discovers a life-saving interest in medicine and writing, both which help her gain a better understanding of her father and become an independent woman. The control M.J. eventually exercises on her emotions enables her to carve out a life away from home, and Haiti.

“It is an unsparing, honest, and unsentimental evocation of a young woman’s struggle for independence amidst the chaos and violence of a nation coming apart at its seams. M.J. Fievre takes us behind her family’s closed doors and beyond the security fences and the armed guards, the protests, the murders, and the nightly eruption of gunfire.”
— John Dufresne, author of No Regrets, Coyote

“A Sky the Color of Chaos is a brave and beautiful book from a prodigious talent. It is also a welcomed revelation of a very talented writer’s beginnings.”
— Edwidge Danticat, author of Brother, I’m Dying and Breath, Eyes, Memory, editor of Haiti Noir

“This is a haunting and violent story that runs counter to the more prevailing narrative of strong people elevating themselves above their humble origins. Fievre’s brutal and poignantly rendered Port-au-Prince origins had to be left behind, not risen above.”
— Johnny Temple, Editor of USA Noir: Best of the Akashic Noir Series

Born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, M.J. Fievre published her first mystery novel, Le Feu de la Vengeance, at the age of sixteen. At nineteen, she signed her first book contract with Hachette-Deschamps, in Haiti, for the publication of a Young Adult book titled La Statuette Maléfique. Since then, M.J. has authored nine books in French. Two years ago, One Moore Book released M.J.’s children’s book, I Am Riding, written in three languages: English, French, and Haitian Creole. A Sky the Color of Chaos is her first book in English.

M.J. holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Barry University and an MFA from the Creative Writing program at Florida International University. She taught writing at Nova Middle School in Davie, FL, and is currently a professor at Miami Dade College.



07.05.18 Latina Reads: 12 Haitian Women Authors To Make Room For On Your Bookshelves
10.24.16 [Book Review] A Sky the Color of Chaos by M.J. Fievre (PANK Magazine)
08.22.16 Book Review: A Sky the Color of Chaos (Coal Hill Review)
05.10.16 A Review of A Sky the Color of Chaos by M.J. Fievre (The Literary Review)
02.20.16 The Horror of Haiti (South China Morning Post)
03.18.16 A Review of M.J. Fievre’s A Sky the Color of Chaos (Brevity Magazine)
01.08.16 Review: “A Sky the Color of Chaos”(At the Inkwell)
12.27.15 Review: “A Sky the Color of Chaos” by M.J. Fièvre (Miami Herald)
12.14.15 Review: M.J. Fievre’s A Sky the Color of Chaos Transports Readers on a Stirring Coming of Age Journey in Haiti (Saw Palm: Florida Literature and Art)
12.11.15 Mention in  The Millions: A Year in Reading: Jaquira Diaz (The Millions)
12.10.15 Review: On M.J. Fievre’s A Sky the Color of Chaos (Michigan Quarterly Review)
11.20.15 Blurb:Praise for A Sky the Color of Chaos

10.05.16 An Interview with M.J. Fievre (Sampsonia Way)
06.24.16 Episode 012: M.J. Fièvre (Read More Podcast)
06.07.16 Behind A Sky the Color of Chaos (Asterix Journal)
06.02.16 Writer to Writer: MJ Fievre (Girls’ Club)
03.27.16 Q&As with M.J. Fievre (Book Q&A with Deborah Kalb)
02.02.16 M.J. Fievre is on TV (MDC in the Haitian Community)
01.21.16 “A Sky the Color of Chaos” Tells the Story of a Haitian Childhood (Bust)
01.15.16 A Life of Beauty and Turmoil in Haiti (The Takeaway)
01.11.16 A Sky the Color of Chaos: An Interview with Author M.J. Fievre (Knight Foundation)
11.24.15 Exclusive Interview: M.J. Fievre (Color Magazine)
11.19.15 Haitian-American Author M.J. Fievre on her Recent Memoir, A Sky the Color of Chaos (Miami New Times)
11.19.15 The TNB Interview: MJ Fievre (The Nervous Breakdown)
11.18.15 Discovering Stories: Michele Jessica Fievre (Origins Journal)
11.09.15 MJ Fievre on the Only in Miami Show (audio)
11.04.15 MJ Fievre on the Marc Bernier Show (audio)
07.21.15 Episode 3: M.J. Fievre on Haiti, Memoir Writing, Publishing, and Work (The Wording Poet Radio Show)
2014 Why Noir, Why Now? Conversations on Haiti Noir with M.J. Fievre and Marie Ketsia Theodore-Pharel (Anthurium) PDF
10.06.13 Interview with Michèle Jessica Fièvre (University of Miami, Special Collection)
06.13.13 Spotlight on M.J. Fievre, author (One Moore Book)
11.15.12 Introducing Book Fair Readers to Haiti (WLRN)
11.10.12 Talk with Lorna Owens (And the Women Gather)

03.16 The Streets are Still Askew (Moko Magazine, Issue 8)
11.19.15 Excerpt from A Sky the Color of Chaos, by M.J. Fievre (The Nervous Breakdown)
Nov. 2015 The Exchange Program (Tupelo Quarterly, Issue 7)

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