Malls Nunn’s Sugar Town Queens opens by introducing us to Amandla and her mother. The basic outline seems to be be that her mother’s mental illness stems from a traumatic background and stifles their lives. Amandla by chance meets her maternal family and finds that they are a privileged wealthy white family with a lot of secrets. From there the book tackles many issues of classism, poverty, racism, and redemption.
I really enjoyed looking into Amandla’s life in South Africa. The writing is really strong, and the characters felt real and came to life in their interactions and the dialog. The author really tackled some heavy hitting topics and did a good job conveying the message and the relationships between Amandla and her best friends, her mentally ill mother, and her new connections with her mother’s family the Bollards. I’d like to read further books by this author in the future.