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Here’s what others are saying about the memoir:
“Started reading A Sky the Color of Chaos. Experiencing textual envy. Bravo!” ~ Geoffrey Philp
“A Sky the Color of Chaos” is a fantastic book that takes the reader on a journey of discovery of self. By learning about her father, the main character (and author) learns more about herself and her place in the world. It’s a journey that will resonate with any reader.” ~ Amazon customer
“We see the turmoil, smell the burning flesh, our skin tingle with every scene.” ~ Marjorie Reid
“The detailed, often brutal and frightening sensory images make the streets and life in Port-au-Prince come vividly alive. The footnotes give depth to the story without slowing it down as an info-dump. Walk a mile in M.J.’s shoes. It will make you want to hug every hurting child in the world! Bravo!” ~ Virginia R. T. Nygard
“What I love about this book is that the characters are complex–not simply good or bad. The same thing can be said of the Haiti of this book. It is at times lovely and enchanting, but also at times wicked and brutal. I was relieved to read a narrative that delved more deeply into the day-to-day life of a middle class Haitian family than the simplistic tragedies we are so often shown on the evening news. The writing is vivid, the descriptions poetic, and at times haunting.” Jan Becker
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.