I’m usually late to the party on new books, but hey, Kingdom of Women by Rosalie Morales Kearns just came out a few months ago, so you can read it and be fashionably late to the party, and what a party it is! People are HUNGRY for this novel, some of us were starving for it.
In Kingdom of Women, women take matters into their own hands and FIGHT BACK, using various means and strategies. I wrote a brief review on goodreads, and now I’m like, really? That’s all I said? Guess I was still trembling before the Patriarchy that says men championing their friends is normal (objective) and women doing it lessens the value…
My absolute biggest takeaway from the novel was the complete and utter lack of horizontal hostility between the protagonists Averil and Catherine. They are incredibly different people with different methods and ideologies, but they share the common goal of liberating all women, and they DO NOT FIGHT EACH OTHER. They love, respect, and support each other. Seems like that shouldn’t be so revolutionary, but it is. It’s SO REVOLUTIONARY.
And why should I even be surprised? Rosalie and I are as different as Averil and Catherine, and yet there is no other person in the universe I’d want to work with for my Minnesota Artist Initiative Grant. If you like anything about me/this website, you should send Rosalie a thank you note, because without her, I have no idea how badly I might still be stuck in the muck.
Most people with MFAs in creative writing, who keep writing, and have been out of their program for a few years will readily admit the MOST VALUABLE part of their MFA is whatever peers they connected with and stayed connected to. I was absolutely blessed to have Rosalie in my MFA program. I had no idea what she was talking about or writing about half the time, but I was curious and interested, and my curiosity was definitely heightened by the fact that almost everyone else was trying to shut her up and dismiss her. She was writing from a feminist perspective and history, something the rest of us knew almost nothing to nothing about.
I could blather on and on about Rosalie’s impact on me and importance in my life, much of which occurred well after we’d both graduated the program, and I was still thinking about what’d happened in the program and things she’d said and done. She founded Shade Mountain Press in 2014(?), and I was again intrigued and impressed, and by then, really really really excited.
Rosalie is an amazing, brilliant, highly-educated, awesome person and writer. Check out Kingdom of Women, let it sink in, all the possibilities, all the what-ifs and could-bes and why-nots.