LISTEN: Sisterhood, Accountability and Ravenously Hungry Girls

Emmy and duPont-Columbia award-winning journalist Anissa Gray’s debut novel The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls is a poignant exploration of sisterhood and motherhood situated at the intersections of race and gender.

When Althea and her husband, Proctor, face charges related to their local restaurant-cum-community-charity that cause their family to fall from grace, her sisters Lillian and Viola find themselves rarely reunited in an effort to care for her daughters, Baby Vi and Kim. As the couple awaits their fates, the Butler family members standing strong in Lillian’s home are forced to reckon with some of their darkest memories—and figure out how to forge an unthinkable path together toward healing.

Gray’s novel, narrated through the alternating voices of Althea, Lillian and Viola, hits shelves in bookstores across the country today. The audiobook, narrated by January LaVoy, Adenrele Ojo, Bahni Turpin and Dominic Hoffman, is now ready for your earbuds as well.

Gray covers much ground in telling the engrossing story of the Butler family—including eating disorders, the disparate consequences of a turbulent economy and the fresh wounds of centuries of racial injustice. In the exclusive clip for Ms. readers below, the tied-tightly and therefore ever-put-together Lillian attempts to quiet her own inner turmoil in order to find the strength to comfort Althea’s daughters, and imagines the worst that could be facing her big sister.

The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls by Anissa Gray. Narrated by January LaVoy, Adenrele Ojo, Bahni Turpin and Dominic Hoffman. Published by Penguin Random House Audio.



Carmen Rios is a self-proclaimed feminist superstar and the former digital editor at Ms. Her writing on queerness, gender, race and class has been published in print and online by outlets including BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, DAME, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic, the National Women’s History Museum, SIGNS and the Women’s Media Center; and she is a co-founder of Webby-nominated Argot Magazine. @carmenriosss|