What's Mine and Yours
Instant New York Times bestseller and Read with Jenna Today Show book club pick, a multigenerational novel of motherhood, race and the American family.
A community in the Piedmont of North Carolina rises in outrage as a county initiative draws students from the largely Black east side of town into predominantly white high schools on the west. For two students, Gee and Noelle, the integration sets off a chain of events that will tie their two families together in unexpected ways over the span of the next twenty years.
On one side of the integration debate is Jade, Gee's steely, ambitious mother. In the aftermath of a harrowing loss, she is determined to give her son the tools he'll need to survive in America as a sensitive, anxious, young Black man. On the other side is Noelle's headstrong mother, Lacey May, a white woman who refuses to see her half‑Latina daughters as anything but white. She strives to protect them as she couldn't protect herself from the influence of their charming but unreliable father, Robbie.
When Gee and Noelle join the play meant to bridge the divide between new and old students, their paths collide, and their two seemingly disconnected families begin to form deeply knotted, messy ties that will shape the trajectory of their adult lives. And their mothers—each determined to see her child inherit a better life—will make choices that will haunt them for decades to come.
As love is built and lost, and the past never too far behind, What's Mine and Yours is an expansive, vibrant tapestry that moves between the years, from the foothills of North Carolina, to Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Paris. It explores the unique organism that is every family: what breaks them apart and how they come back together.
In the compelling novel "What's Mine and Yours" by Naima Coster, readers are taken on a thought-provoking journey that explores the intricate dynamics of family, love, and identity.
At the heart of the story is the Williams family, led by the enigmatic matriarch, Cecile, a woman whose decisions and actions have both positive and negative consequences on those around her. Her daughter, Karina, is a successful businesswoman grappling with the complexities of her personal life, while her son, Miles, struggles to find his place in the family and the world.
As the narrative unfolds, readers are privy to the Williamses' secrets, longings, and fears through alternating perspectives. Coster masterfully weaves together their individual stories, showcasing the ways in which their past and present choices shape their lives and relationships.
One of the central themes in "What's Mine and Yours" is the blurred lines between personal and familial possessions. Coster delves into the murky waters of inheritance and legacy, exploring how the desire for material wealth can lead to conflict and betrayal.
In addition to its insightful exploration of family dynamics, the novel also touches upon issues of race, class, and gender. Coster skillfully captures the nuances of identity and belonging, particularly in the context of a changing America.
With its richly drawn characters, evocative writing, and thought-provoking themes, "What's Mine and Yours" is a captivating read that stays with readers long after they finish the final page. It is an exceptional story that celebrates the complexities of family, love, and the quest for self-discovery.