It was the year 1954 and a daring author published a story that covered a topic that was believed to be so dark children's eyes would be covered and towns would talk of a story that changed everything that they believed in. She dared to be bold and cover the topic of racial relations. People were amazed that a subject like that would be written about so there were many curious readers. The entire printing sold out two weeks after it was published. Shirley Ann Grau is daring, writes what she believes should be told, and tells both sides of a story.
Grau grew up in an integrated neighborhood in uptown New Orleans and Mongomery, Alabama. Even though the topic of racism came up constantly she avoided it and did not let it bother her. "Grau crosses the color line to create memorable characters in black and white." Her writing style shows no favoritism. She writes as if the world did not mind or care about skin color. Grau's book The Keeper of the House covers the romantic relationship between a dark colored housekeeper and a member of an Aristocratic Southern white family. Shirley Ann Grau won the Pultizer Prize for The Keeper of the House in 1965.
Even though most of her stories contain racially mixed characters she discusses major themes and topics that exist today. The House On Coliseum Street covers the topic of women fighting for what they believe in. This is still a major issue that is improving in the United States. Although elsewhere women continue to struggle for equal rights.
The Black Prince and Other Stories takes place in the Deep South during the 1940's.The stories this anthology contains demonstrate how even the smallest people can make a difference in the world and prove to be greater than those who are considered to be higher than the rest.
Grau's unique style of writing is a treasure. She views the world through her eyes and sees it from a different perspective that others would not choose to see. She lives her life and chooses to see her life through the world of her stories. " 'My writing reflects the world I live in that's all,' she continues. 'One doesn't sit down one day and say, 'Let's see, I'll write a story about a white woman today. And Tomorrow I'll write a story about a black man. I'm interested in people, but not as representatives of a race. I see people first. I do stories first."