There is something very disturbing in reading about the time when slavery was rampant in the Western world ( not that it is any easier to read my own country’s history but in this case , this comment is more of a buildup to the book in question) . This book is part of Oprah Winfrey’s book club ( I had not heard of the club before this and I did not base my selection of the book only on the O on the cover page) and I can see why that would be so. This is a fictitious representation of the lives of the Grimke sisters, two of the first women abolitionist involved even in women’s rights.
During the reading of the book I started framing bits of this review in my head to distract from the more morbid picture of the life of a slave in the 19th century USA. I wanted to state that I was not aware of the amount of liberties that the author took with the sisters lives and how much of their mind she actually represented. But the author stole my thunder by declaring completely how and which parts of the real story she manipulated and how much of it is based out of very thorough research on her part when she realized they were from her neck of the woods. With that declaration included in the book, I do not feel any qualms in recommending this book myself ( I do not know why I would think any author who wrote historical fiction would not pay respect or homage to history)
The struggle to read this book is not as painful as reading Roots (By Alex Haley), since we are dealing more with household slaves and not the field slaves ( That there is such a distinction is bad enough) . This is more of the struggle of two people living on the privileged side fight with their conscience in varying degrees to come to terms with what they see and live with in their day to day life and how they could do their part to voice dissent as well as try to right the wrongs of their forefathers. The way slavery is justified in the minds of the slave owners is scary ( Yes, that is the word I wanted to use)
The writing is simple and you do not focus on anything but the flow of the story. The book is carried on the merit of what the story stands for. I gave it 4 stars only because it did not give me any good tingles ( though the blame rests on the horrors of slavery where people were treated as commodities because of a difference in colour. I am in no way saying that that has ended but at least it is frowned upon by a larger percentage of people)
To get back to the book review, it is a good book 🙂