Isaiah and Samuel only know the names they’ve been given by their master, Paul, who owns a southern cotton plantation. They know nothing of their past. They are assigned to the barn to tend the animals where Paul plans to use them as breeding stock to enrich his plantation with more slaves. But once the pair mature, their love for each other deepens. When Amos learns of their conduct behind closed doors, he preaches to the rest of the slaves that they are evil. Many turn their backs of Isaiah and Samuel and they become more isolated. But their love for each other sustains them until Timothy, Paul’s only son, returns from the north after completing his education. One night, when he spies the pair entwined in each other arms, their lives change, and will never be the same again.
I heard about this book on a CBC Radio One interview with the author, and the book more than lives up to the praise given by the interviewer. The author’s style and content made me feel like I was reading Toni Morrison.