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Reviewed by Tracy Young for Readers' Favorite
This is the story of Envy and Lionel, a relationship that began when she was a vulnerable sixteen-year-old girl and lasted over thirty years. There is a rich and varied cast of characters that enter their lives and play their part but essentially this is their story. Envy did not have the best of starts in life. Motherless at fifteen and a witness to the descent into madness of her older sister, it would seem inevitable that she would remain downtrodden and poverty stricken. However, she has seen her older brothers using education to elevate themselves to a better life and is determined that she can do the same. Lionel is not the man to support her dreams and encourage her progress, yet she continues to believe they can have a future together. Melody L. Barksdale has written Till Death Do Us Part in a brutally honest fashion.
As a modern woman who believes that choice is automatic, I found Till Death Do Us Part a complex read. I did find myself shouting at Envy to get her house in order. Melody L. Barksdale has written Envy as a woman who is so full of self-belief that it is difficult to understand why she accepts such setbacks from life. Her relationship with Lionel, and with her daughters, is so complicated that quite early on you realize that only death can truly part them. Her relationship with God is equally troubled and complex. This is a must-read for all women who have struggled with their relationships and, indeed, those who have not.