Here's my latest read, a book I couldn't recommend more. I had read Octavia Butler's Parable series (also excellent, although I have reread the first many times, but can barely remember the second) and the Xenogenesis series (amazing trilogy - perhaps more interesting for sci-fi fans, but something I would not discourage anyone from reading), but strangely only discovered Kindred this week.
Kindred is the story of a 26-year-old black woman who is abruptly yanked from 1976 Los Angeles to 1800s Maryland to save the life of her ancestor - a white slaveowner. She is repeatedly sucked back into this world, where she must live as a slave, and make choices that she finds appalling, in order to ensure her own future existence.
Rating: 5 of 5 stars
Excellent book. Not happy, but satisfying in the end, and powerful all the way through. Dana's jarring experiences, and the disorientation suffered by Dana and the reader both, as Dana is yanked through time to the 1800s, prove to be highly effective in communicating the inhumanity of slavery, and by extension, all forms of tyranny. Simultaneously, the author manages to convey the humanity of both the enslaver and the enslaved. Should be on everyone's must-read list.
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After reading such a profoundly serious novel, I wanted to balance it out with a bit of lightheartedness, so I am now reading Tom Robbins's* Even Cowgirls Get the Blues.
* It doesn't feel right, but according to Strunk's The Elements of Style, as well as other sources, the appropriate possessive ending to a name ending in "s" is " 's," with some exceptions. Speaking of apostrophes, did you know that there's a name for the use of an apostrophe to make a word plural?