On Valmorain’s arrival from France, he finds he is responsible for the sugar cane plantation on the island of Saint-Domingue at his father’s death.He purchases nine-year-old Tété who soon learns to manage his house. In her teenage years, he rapes her and uses her as his concubine. When he removes their first-born child, Tété’s life couldn’t be worse. With a slave rebellion in site, Tété’s moves Valmorain’s son from his first wife to New Orleans.
This historical fiction set in Haiti during the slave trading era held a mixture of points of view: from plantation owners to the slaves who practised voodoo and tried to maintain their African roots.
When Theo, a Nigerian art historian, removes a painting of a horse from a discarded pile of junk a neighbour has dumped in her front yard, he is unaware of its connection to a Kentucky slave from the 1800s. He takes the painting covered in soot to a restorer where he meets a Smithsonian scientist, Jess who has been studying the bones of the horse she believes is the same one in the painting. Jarret is a slave in the 1850s with a knack with horses. He forms a close bond with a foal after its birth and grooms the horse to race on the insistence of his master, Dr. Warfield.
What happens to Theo and the painting he has restored? And why did the bones of a horse from more than a hundred years ago end up in storage in a neglected section of Washington’s Smithsonian Museum?
What makes this book an even better read is the author’s meticulous research into many of her real characters and the events that actually happened back in the 1800s.
Nancy is a freelance Australian journalist based in Paris in the late 1930s. In between assignments, she wiles away her time with her French friend, Stephanie who soon introduces her to handsome, playboy, Henri. But Nancy’s life is set on a different course when she witnesses the whipping and humiliation of a Berlin Jew. She cannot forget the German torturer’s face nor the mesmerized crowd when Hitler gave a speech.
Continue reading “Ariel Lawhon’s—Code name Helene”
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.
Continue reading “Robert Jones Jr’s — The prophets *****”