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Publisher's Summary

A poignant mother-daughter story about the complex inner lives of women by the critically acclaimed author of Training School for Negro Girls.

In this evocative short piece, Candace worries that her mother, Annie, has reached an emotional breaking point. When her best friend loses her battle with cancer, Annie is acting in uncharacteristic ways, seemingly less concerned than ever about what her friends and neighbors think of her - a troubling development in her daughter’s eyes. But while Candace may think she knows her mother better than anyone, something deeper lingers beneath the surface, and times of hardship have a way of bringing us closer together than ever.

A perfect next listen for fans of Tayari Jones and Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney, Starchild is a moving story from a striking literary voice.

©2021 Camille Acker (P)2021 Audible Originals, LLC.

About the Creator

Camille Acker is the author of the critically acclaimed short story collection Training School for Negro Girls published by The Feminist Press in 2018. She grew up in Washington, D.C and holds a BA in English from Howard University and an MFA in Creative Writing from New Mexico State University. Her writing has received support from the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, Voices of Our Nations Arts, and Millay Colony for the Arts, among others. As a creative writing teacher, she has advised and mentored students across the United States including at New Mexico State University, Tin House Writers Workshop, Chicago Writers Studio, and Blue Stoop. In 2020, she was selected for a Fulbright Scholarship. Her work has been published in The New York Times Book Review, Publishers Weekly, Electric Literature, and is forthcoming in the anthology On Girlhood: 15 Stories From the Well-Read Black Girl Library. She lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with her partner.

About the Performer

Joniece Abbott-Pratt’s numerous audiobook narrations have garnered her Earphone Awards for Tiffany D. Jackson’s Grown and Jordan Ifueko’s Raybearer, for which she also received a 2021 Audie nomination in Fantasy.
Along with a full cast, she received a SOVA for Best Voiceover Audiobook Narration for Children (Infant-12) for Garbage Pail Kids by R. L. Stein.
In addition to her work as a narrator, Joniece has worked professionally as an actor, appearing on stage and screen.
Notable stage productions include The Good Negro at the Public Theater and The House That Will Not Stand at New York Theatre Workshop. On screen she has worked on Evil, FBI: Most Wanted and Law & Order to name a few.

What listeners say about Starchild

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Great Short!

This was a great short about loss and grief. I loved the dynamic between mother and daughter. The narration was excellent!

6 people found this helpful

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Excellent!

Excellent short read! Left me wanting more of the story and the main characters. Definitely recommend.

3 people found this helpful

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I loved everything about this…

The best part being her momma showing her how to really live in the small space of time we all occupy.

1 person found this helpful

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You'll want to listen again!

Ok, I listened to “Starchild” twice. Why? Because I wanted to listen even more closely a second time. I’m a huge fan of mother/daughter stories. Adult children never really know their parents; there is a moment when adult children finally see the fragilities that have been hidden.

This is only 55 minutes in length, but it shows the emotional divide of a mother and her daughter. Candace begins to suspect there could be an emotional/mental issue with her mother when her momma shows up at the wake of her momma’s best friend wearing a gold lame’ cocktail dress (it’s mid-thigh if not shorter, highlighting all her curvy features). The Deacon enjoyed his lingering gaze, while the pastor did his best to ignore. The dress is fun, but it’s Annie’s impassioned speech at the lectern that is something I’m still chuckling about. The dress and the speech aren’t all, her mother, Annie, also begins to enjoy her ganja again. What’s a daughter of this formally very religious/modest woman to do??

A chance encounter at the grocery store allows Candace to see her mother in a new light. This is a beautiful story of a daughter seeing her momma as a strong, vital woman.

This is an audible original, narrated by Joniece Abbott-Prat and Karen Chilton. It is written by Camille Acker.

You will want to listen to it again.

1 person found this helpful

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Beautiful

Beautiful story about life after loss and the visible and invisible pain and emotion that go with it, while layering in the parent-child relationship as it evolves. Lovely story.

1 person found this helpful

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Sweet, Simple & Starlit

Cute coming of age story about a young girl discovering her body and beauty. Recommended for young adults.

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Touching. Real and Inspired

It was an evocative short story that left me smiling and joyous. Great performances, lovely storytelling.

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emotionally moving but still so delightful!

I loved it. The relationship between the mother and daughter was so compelling. The language, the imagery, the music, totally funky!

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Beautiful Mother/Daughter Story

Beautiful story of a daughter, Candace, being able to see her mother, Annie, as a STRONG woman. While going through the death of her best friend, Annie continues to enjoy her life an experience things from her past. Candace sees her mother differently due to a chance encounter at the grocery store.

Throughly enjoyed this short story !!!

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Beautiful story about grief

This is so well written and performed! The story really spoke to my heart. Grief is so personal but also so universal. One of the best short stories I’ve ever read/listened to!

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  • Sharon
  • 12-28-21

Joyful grief

This short story celebrates the joy and grief of death, life and the bond between a mother and daughter. I enjoyed it, but rated it 4 stars because I felt it lacked resolution and the first narrator's voice is initially quite stilted.