Monday, November 16, 2009

The Book of Negoes by Lawrence Hill

This book has been recommended by a number of readers who have enjoyed it.

In this book, Animata tells the story of her life. She is born and raised in a small village in Africa. The midwifery skills she learns from her mother are useful throughout life. Animata survives the brutality and cruelty of the slave traders and owners. It is clear that she has derived great strength and wisdom from her parents even in the few years she had with them.

Eventually she escapes and in New York registers her name in the ‘Book of Negroes’, a historic British military ledger allowing 3,000 former slaves to sail from Manhattan to Nova Scotia. The British fail to keep their promises of freedom and land and years later, Animata joins a group of 1,200 former slaves traveling to Sierra Leone to establish a place called Freetown. Aminata sees it as a chance to finally return home.

This book makes history come alive and is well worth reading.

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