Margaret Wilkerson Sexton with Anita Gail Jones - On the Rooftop (ESCOM College of Marin)

Margaret Wilkerson Sexton
in conversation with Anita Gail Jones

On the Rooftop

Fri., April 28, 2023 • 1:00pm PT
College of Marin • Free Event

This event will be hosted by College of Marin. Please contact with questions.

Join us for two exciting author events at College of Marin: in this event, Margaret Wilkerson Sexton will talk about her brilliant novel, On the Rooftop. Admission is free and all are welcome. You don't need a ticket. Parking for these events is easy and free.

More information: or (415) 485-9475. These events are sponsored by the Emeritus Students of College of Marin.

A stunning novel about a mother whose dream of musical stardom for her three daughters collides with the daughters’ ambitions for their own lives — set against the backdrop of gentrifying 1950s San Francisco

At home they are just sisters, but on stage, they are The Salvations. Ruth, Esther, and Chloe have been singing and dancing in harmony since they could speak. Thanks to the rigorous direction of their mother, Vivian, they’ve become a bona fide girl group whose shows are the talk of the Jazz-era Fillmore.

Now Vivian has scored a once-in-a-lifetime offer from a talent manager, who promises to catapult The Salvations into the national spotlight. Vivian knows this is the big break she’s been praying for. But sometime between the hours of rehearsal on their rooftop and the weekly gigs at the Champagne Supper Club, the girls have become women, women with dreams that their mother cannot imagine.

The neighborhood is changing, too: all around the Fillmore, white men in suits are approaching Black property owners with offers. One sister finds herself called to fight back, one falls into the comfort of an old relationship, another yearns to make her own voice heard. And Vivian, who has always maintained control, will have to confront the parts of her life that threaten to splinter: the community, The Salvations, and even her family.

Warm, gripping, and wise, with echoes of Fiddler on the Roof, Margaret Wilkerson Sexton’s latest novel is a moving family portrait from “a writer of uncommon nerve and talent” (New York Times Book Review ).

Margaret Wilkerson Sexton studied creative writing at Dartmouth College and law at UC Berkeley. Her most recent novel, The Revisioners, won a 2020 Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize and an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work and was a national bestseller as well as a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her debut novel, A Kind of Freedom, was long-listed for the National Book Award. She lives in Oakland with her family.

Anita Gail Jones - Born and raised in Albany, Georgia, Anita maintains a strong connection with this southwest corner of the state. This region is the setting for her upcoming debut novel, The Peach Seed. The manuscript was selected as a 2021 Finalist in the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction and was acquired by Retha Powers at Holt in a two-book deal for publication in August 2023.
In 2002, Anita and her husband, Rob Roehrick, founded the Gaines-Jones Education Foundation, awarding need-based college scholarships to Black students in southwest Georgia and the San Francisco Bay Area. Her oral tradition storytelling grew out of an early desire to write and illustrate children’s stories.





Margaret Wilkerson Sexton photo courtesy of Smeeta Mahanti. Anita Gail Jones photo courtesy of the author.



Academic Center, Room 255
835 College Ave.
Kentfield, CA 94904
On the Rooftop: A Reese's Book Club Pick By Margaret Wilkerson Sexton Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063139961
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ecco - September 6th, 2022

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The Peach Seed By Anita Gail Jones Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250872050
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Henry Holt and Co. - August 1st, 2023