Based on actual events, BRUTAL EXCLUSIONS focuses on life in Charleston, SC, during a decade that changed history: The Sixties. 

After a school bus is toppled by eight Charleston businessmen in protest against school desegregation, Alethea Jamison, the only African American youngster on a bus full of white children, withdraws from everyone, including her adoring family.

Within the plot, other Charlestonians encounter trials and challenges that were typical of this decade that gave birth to feminism, gay rights, free love, black power, and distrust of "the establishment." 

For example:

Duncan, a closeted gay man, struggles not only with his crush on his best friend, Robert, but also on what it means to come out of the closet. 

Elsa, a European American, must hide her relationship with Jason, an African American who "escaped" the South to live in New York City, from her friends and colleagues. 

Robert must decide whether to support a close family member who was one of the perpetrators in terrorizing a child in the bus incident. 

And Lionel Jamison, Alethea's brother and a Marine, struggles with his feelings about U.S. involvement in Vietnam. 

Through all of the plot's twists and turns, Charleston is portrayed as a city that is, all at once, celebrated, reviled, and even deified by its cast of memorable but often troubled characters. 


The murders of ten worshipers by a racist at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, on June 17, 2015, renders this novel even more relevant today, as our society still struggles with issues pertaining to race, diversity and identity.

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A Brutal History from Which No One Is Excluded