Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Book of Negroes

I finally finished reading Lawrence Hill's The Book of Negroes when I was home sick again yesterday afternoon. It was soooo slow to start but I'm glad I persevered because it turned out to be such a worthwhile book to spend time with.

The novel is about a woman named Aminata Diallo who was stolen from her African village at the age of 11 and sold into slavery to work an indigo plantation in South Carolina. She eventually finds her way to a free Black settlement in Nova Scotia by registrering her name in the "book of Negroes" a British military ledger that allowed 3,000 Black Loyalists passage on ships sailing from Manhattan. Her ultimate wish however, is to return to the village of her birth and she nearly succeeds after returning to Africa with the Sierra Leone Company. She narrowly escapes enslavement a second time and spends her final days in London, England, where she finds her happy ending.

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