We’re thrilled to share that our March Book Club selection is Chelsea Bieker’s debut novel Godshot, forthcoming from Catapult on April 7, but available to Rumpus Book Club members in just a few weeks!
Drought has settled on the town of Peaches, California. The area of the Central Valley where fourteen-year-old Lacey May and her alcoholic mother live was once an agricultural paradise. Now it’s an environmental disaster, a place of cracked earth and barren raisin farms. In their desperation, residents have turned to a cult leader named Pastor Vern for guidance. He promises, through secret “assignments,” to bring the rain everybody is praying for.
Lacey has no reason to doubt the pastor. But then her life explodes in a single unimaginable act of abandonment: her mother, exiled from the community for her sins, leaves Lacey and runs off with a man she barely knows. As Lacey May begins to uncover the full extent of Pastor Vern’s shocking plan to bring fertility back to the land, she decides she must go on a quest to find her mother, no matter what it takes. Godshot is a book of grit and humor and heart, a debut novel about female friendship and resilience, mother-loss and motherhood, and seeking salvation in unexpected places.
“Chelsea Bieker’s Godshot is an absolute masterpiece. A truly epic journey through girlhood, divinity, and the blood that binds and divides us, it is a feminist magnum opus of this, or any, time. Bieker is a pitch-perfect ventriloquist of extraordinary talent and ferocity. Imagine if Annie Proulx wrote something like White Oleander crossed with Geek Love or Cruddy, and then add cults, God, motherhood, girlhood, class, deserts, witches, the divinity of women… Terrifying, resplendent, and profoundly moving, this book will leave you changed.” – T Kira Madden, author of Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls
“Godshot is wise, tough, electrifying, beautiful―every raw detail sings true. Chelsea Bieker writes about pain and resilience like nobody else.” – Leni Zumas, author of Red Clocks
Subscribe to the Rumpus Book Club by February 15 to join us in reading Godshot, culminating in an exclusive online discussion with author Chelsea Bieker about the book!