Dunne, Jul 2003, 24.95, 320 pp.
John Washington travels the entire Lower Mississippi Valley selling wares to small stores and is away from his Myrtle, Louisiana home most of the time. Thus, it is not surprising that he is on the road when his wife dies leaving him with two daughters, eight years old Clara and five years old Vivian.
About a year later, over the objection of his children especially the younger one, he remarries Antoinette Malone. His older child goes to a New Orleans school and his younger one moves in with his in-laws. Meanwhile, John continues traveling not just to make money but to see the love of his life Odessa, a black woman. However, she is not the only secret John keeps as he passes in white society by acting accordingly.
UNTIL THAT GOOD DAY is an intriguing period piece that enables the audience to visualize life in the Lower Mississippi during the Depression. The tale is told from different perspectives so that the audience gains a wider vision of the times. The characters are deep and John's dark secret is interesting as he hides it from most of his customers and his family. Only his beloved Odessa knows the truth. Though there is little action, Marjorie Kemper provides a deep character study that shines on a way of life that feels almost ancient though it is only seven decades ago.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner