Memory, Loss, and Motherhood explored in Author Carol Mitchell’s Riveting Debut Adult Novel What Start Bad a Mornin’ 

Carol Mitchell, Author of What Start Bad a Mornin'


BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – Kittitian Author Carol Mitchell’s debut adult novel, What Start Bad a Mornin’, is receiving rave reviews ahead of its September 19th release.

Booklist from the American Library Association said “Mitchell’s ability to sustain tension while telling a nuanced story that balances family tragedy with a vision of acceptance and support makes this an engaging and life-affirming read.”

Elizabeth Nunez, award-winning author of Prospero’s Daughter and Now Lila Knows calls the prose “luminous,” while Cleyvis Natera, celebrated author of Neruda on the Park refers to the book as “breathtaking” and a “stellar debut.”

Mitchell, who has authored 18 books for children and tweens, has penned a novel about an immigrant Caribbean woman which spans Jamaica, Trinidad and the United States of America.

What Start Bad a Mornin’ gives voice to an immigrant woman forced to confront her repressed memories of violent trauma. While it is an immigrant story, even if you have never left home to seek a better life abroad, it is a human story to which we can all relate,” says Mitchell, who teaches writing in Virginia.

In the novel, Amaya Lin has few memories of the years before she turned eighteen. Now in her forties, she has compensated by carefully cultivating a satisfying life as a wife, mother, and business professional. Her husband’s law practice is on the brink of major success; her neurodiverse son has grown into an independent adult; and she has come to terms with her aunt’s dementia. This sense of order is disrupted when she encounters a stranger who claims to have an impossible connection, launching Amaya on a tumultuous journey into the past.

What Start Bad a Mornin’ grapples with themes ranging from quiet domestic desperation to the perils of the immigrant experience, from latent racism to the literal violence of politics. The character dynamics are complex and interesting; the entanglements sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes heartwarming, sometimes frustrating, sometimes cozy, all the beats of genuine human interaction. A compelling, meditative, and well-paced journey,” says ANSA-winning author Joanne C. Hillhouse of Antigua & Barbuda.

Published by Central Avenue Publishing, it will be released September 19, 2023. It is now available for pre-order wherever books are sold. In celebration of its launch, Mitchell will be appearing at Sankofa Video and Books in Washington D.C. on September 19, in St. Kitts on October 28, and at many other venues in the Caribbean and the United States.

Learn more about Carol Mitchell’s new novel and her other works at