Cleaning House (8/1/18)
Growing up queer in southern Appalachia wasn’t easy for Centenary Rhodes, so she left home as soon as she could, but the post-collegiate happiness she’d expected has never occurred. She can’t find a decent date, much less find that special someone, and, after losing her job in a corporate downsize, she’s struggling to meet her most basic needs. Her car has been repossessed, her bills are piling up, and her questionable North Chicago neighborhood is dangerous to navigate.
Returning home to Hare Creek, Tennessee, never crosses Cent’s mind until her Great Aunt Tess, one of only two people in Cent’s family who accept her as-is, contacts her with an offer she can’t refuse. The family homestead must be sold, and Aunt Tess needs someone to clean it up. Cent will have access to Aunt Tess’ garden and truck and can live on the homestead rent-free for as long as it takes. A part-time job at a local convenience store is waiting for her as well.
It’s a chance to solve some of Cent’s financial woes, but going home, she soon finds, will mean discovering a past she can’t remember and a magical, elemental-filled future she never expected.