Vailes Shepperd | A Good Ending for Bad Memories


Vailes Shepperd grew up with a love of words: Words first, then stories, and inevitably books. Thank goodness for her grandmother’s library. She is happiest in her reading chair, enjoying one story with two new books waiting in the wings. Shepperd is one of the founding members of the Washington Independent Review of Books and a former senior features editor. She grew up in Washington, DC, and after moving around the world, returned home and lives there now with her husband and sons. A Good Ending for Bad Memories is her first published novel. 
A Good Ending for Bad Memories is a multi-generational tale that follows the matriarchal lineage of a splintered woman with an irregular memory. Equal parts sprawling travelogue and family saga, A Good Ending is imbued with magical realism and southern gothic Americana. It is a fascinating study of the fragmented psyche of its central character and the ancestral trauma of racism and abuse on her children.
Ultimately, this story is about the quest for wholeness and the reconstruction of memory to reclaim one’s own narrative. A Good Ending for Bad Memories is preoccupied with the elusive, ghost-like nature of memory and its distant echoes across continents, personas, and generations. (Published by Bold Story Press.
Visit for more information and to buy a copy of A Good Ending for Bad Memories.
A version of this article was published by Good Day Orange County. It has been republished here with permission.

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