Jesus Land: A Memoir

by Julia Scheeres (Author)

The memoir the New York Times Book Review called "heart-stopping and enraging" and about which Entertainment Weekly raved "Jesus Land will break your heart and mend it again"

"Sinners go to: HELL. Rightchuss go to: HEAVEN. The end is neer: REPENT. This here is: JESUS LAND."

Julia Scheeres stumbles across these signs along the side of a cornfield while out biking with her adopted brother David. It's the mid-1980s, they're sixteen years old, and have just moved to rural Indiana, a landscape of cottonwood trees and trailer parks--and a racism neither of them is prepared for. While Julia is white, her close relationship with David, who's black, makes them both outcasts. At home, a distant mother--more involved with her church's missionaries than with her own children--and a violent father only compound their problems. When the day comes that high-school hormones, racist brutality, and a deep-seated restlessness prove too much to bear, their parents' solution is reform school--in the Dominican Republic.

In this riveting memoir, first-time author Scheeres takes us with her from the Midwest to a place beyond imagining. Surrounded by natural beauty, the Escuela Caribe is nonetheless characterized by a disciplinary regime that demands its teens repent for their sins under boot-camp conditions. Julia and David's striving to make it through is told here with startling immediacy, extreme candor, and not an ounce of malice.

Book Details

Publication Date
March 01, 2009
Publisher
Page count
384
ISBN
9781582439556
Paper ISBN
9781619020658