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Library Journal – by Eleanor J. Bader: 2006-03-26
  • The psychological damage caused by not knowing one's personal history comes center stage in John's alluring debut. Thirty-seven-year-old Lillian Baptiste, a native of Dominica, has lived in the United States for 23 years and has never returned home. But she has never stopped questioning-maybe even obsessing over-what happened to the women in her family.
    Although Lillian does not have many facts, she knows that her mother, a prostitute, died in prison shortly after visiting the home the child shared with her stepmother. She also knows that her maternal grandmother, an alleged murderer and purveyor of Obeah, was hung. Was her grandmother truly guilty? What happened at her trial? Had her mother been trying to confide something before passing on?
    When Lillian eventually returns to the island, she is accompanied by her longtime friend Teddy, a scholar of African culture. Together, they slowly uncover what transpired. The result is a page-turner, melding magical realism with historical fact and fascinating social observations about the politics of class, gender, and race… this layered, compassionate novel is highly recommended.

    Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information
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