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Publisher's Summary

For the newly freed black residents of Colfax, Louisiana, the beginning of Reconstruction promised the right to vote, to own property, and, at the very least, control over their own lives. However, in the space of a day, angry whites took back Colfax in one of the most brutal incidents of racial violence in Southern history. Now, in the bitter aftermath, the Tademys and the Smiths will have to deal with the wreckage, push on, and build a better life for their sons and daughters over the next 70 years. Hailed as "remarkable" (Philadelphia Inquirer), "astonishing" (Essence), and "spellbinding" (Detroit Free Press), Lalita Tademy's first novel, Cane River, was a New York Times best seller and the 2001 Oprah Book Club Summer Selection. Now, once again, Tademy weaves together history and the story of her own family to bring us an epic work of fiction - the dramatic, intertwining tale of two families struggling to make peace for themselves in an America deeply divided after the Civil War.
©2007 Lalita Tademy (P)2007 Books on Tape
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Critic Reviews

"Through her characters, the author paints an indelible portrait of rural life under Jim Crow, built around backbreaking farm labor, blood ties that bind and chafe, and the omnipresent fear of a capricious white racism that can undo in a moment the work of a lifetime. Combining family anecdotes with historical research and a rich imagination, Tademy crafts another American epic." (Publishers Weekly)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 12-03-11

Stilted, painful for the listener

What was most disappointing about Lalita Tademy’s story?

Stilted narrative, most of which was done in third person. The narrator did a fine job, but can't overcome the book's glacial pace. Charitably gave it two points for the subject matter. I liked Cane River, but not this one. I wish I could get my credit back.

What does Bahni Turpin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I liked her, but she couldn't save this book.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By MrsG on 06-30-18

A Necessary Book

I would suggest this book to any African American who for whatever reason remains ambivalent about the importance of education and voting. I read Cane River first and they were both eye opening and dramatic reads.

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