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Critical Praise

"A first novel, yes. But balanced with experiences, imagery, and characters that linger on the flesh. Eyes. In the heart. And as I read the last paragraph and closed the book, I knew that I had experienced an amazing journey of light. Thank you my dear sister for this wonderful book." 

—Sonia Sanchez, poet and writer

“‘Alone, I sat on the sand and took in the beauty of my grandmother’s land’ was the reason Lauren Francis-Sharma gave for writing her remarkable debut ‘TIL THE WELL RUNS DRY. I was swept away by this thunderous, witty, and deeply soulful novel about family, Trinidad, secrets, porch sitters, dirt roads and passion. And so satisfying, like the first time I read my aunt’s novel, THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD.” 

—Lucy Anne Hurston

“An evocative and emotionally resonant family saga with one of the most compelling heroines I’ve met in a long time. A story of love, loss and triumph set in a world of secret and moral consequence. Like the Obeah woman in her story, Lauren Francis-Sharma has cast a spell that refuses to release me. I won’t forget this story or the voice of this wonderful new writer any time soon.”

—Brunonia Barry, New York Times bestselling author of THE LACE READER

"Lauren Francis-Sharma takes us to the island of Trinidad, the ‘Land of the hummingbird,’ in a story that feels like a song, with a chorus of voices across generations, revealing a culture as vibrant and enriching as it is overlooked by those on the mainland." 

—Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Alphonse Fletcher University Professor, Harvard University


"’TIL THE WELL RUNS DRY is unforgettable. Like the best poetry, it has all the high notes: a beautiful girl, a spell that leads to love and death, and a terrible secret  --- in language pierced with the cries and colors of the West Indies. But this is not just a story; it’s the author’s retelling of her own origins. Sweet, brutal, and unsparing, this is Lauren Francis-Sharma’s first book, yet she commands the page." 

—Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller THE DEEP END OF THE OCEAN

"[A] remarkably accomplished first-time novelist…Francis-Sharma’s spellbinding, intimately detailed, psychologically lush and suspenseful tale of racial and sexual trauma, hard work, love and family devotion makes personal the injustice people endured in the years leading up to the civil rights movement in both multicultural Trinidad and segregated America." 

—Booklist, starred review