Saturday, February 1, 2014

4 New Voices in Black Fiction

The Twelve Tribes of Hattie (M)
by Ayana Mathis"In 1923, 17-year-old Hattie Shepherd flees Georgia for Philadelphia, where, though her first two babies die because she can't afford medicine, she keeps nine children alive with old southern remedies and sheer love. Saddled with a husband who brings her nothing but disappointment, she prepares her children for a world she knows will not be kind to them. A searing portrait of an unforgettable family, an emotionally transfixing drama of human striving in the face of insurmountable adversity and a ferocious vision of humanity at its most threadbare and elemental."--Publisher

"Mathis writes with blazing insight into the complexities of sexuality, marriage, family relationships, backbone, fraudulence, and racism in a molten novel of lives racked with suffering yet suffused with beauty." - Booklist

The House Girl (M)
by Tara Conklin" Lina Sparrow, an ambitious first-year associate in an elite law firm, is given a difficult, highly sensitive assignment that could make her career: she must find the "perfect plaintiff" to lead a historic class-action lawsuit worth trillions of dollars in reparations for descendants of American slaves." -publisher

"Simultaneously telling the stories of two women separated in time by 150 years, the author slowly builds a suspenseful and dramatic revelation of their deep connection across the decades. Conklin's debut is a seamless juxtaposition of past and present, of the lives of two women, and of the redemptive nature of art and the search for truth and justice. Guaranteed to keep readers up long past their bedtimes" - Library Journal

The Wedding Gift (M)
by Marlen Suyapa Bodden "When prestigious plantation owner Cornelius Allen gives his daughter Clarissa's hand in marriage, she takes with her a gift: Sarah, her slave and her half-sister. Raised by an educated mother, Clarissa is not the proper Southern belle she appears to be--with ambitions of loving whom she chooses--and Sarah equally hides behind the facade of being a docile house slave as she plots to escape. Both women bring these tumultuous secrets and desires with them to their new home, igniting events that spiral [out of control]" - publisher

"Though passionate, this story is not an historical romance. Women's relationships, thoughts, and conversations predominate in this novel about slavery and human rights, making it a good choice for readers who like a fast-paced historical story with a clear and relevant them" - Library Journal

Wash: a novel (M)
by Margaret Wrinkle"In early 1800s Tennessee, two men find themselves locked in an intimate power struggle. Richardson, a troubled Revolutionary War veteran, has spent his life fighting not only for his country but also for wealth and status. When the pressures of westward expansion and debt threaten to destroy everything he's built, he sets Washington, a young man he owns, to work as his breeding sire. Wash, the first member of his family to be born into slavery, struggles to hold onto his only solace: the spirituality inherited from his shamanic mother. As he navigates the treacherous currents of his position, despair and disease lead him to a potent healer named Pallas. Their tender love unfolds against this turbulent backdrop while she inspires him to forge a new understanding of his heritage and his place in it. Once Richardson and Wash find themselves at a crossroads, all three lives are pushed to the brink."" - publisher

"Wrinkle has written a remarkable first novel, one that will haunt readers with the questions it raises, and the disturbing glimpse it offers into an unfathomable world." - Booklist

1 comment:

  1. still don't understand the ending of Twelve Tribes, but the rest of it was good