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Libertie: A Novel por Kaitlyn Greenidge
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Libertie: A Novel (edição 2021)

por Kaitlyn Greenidge (Autor)

MembrosCríticasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
20717101,123 (3.59)5
Membro:jlweiss
Título:Libertie: A Novel
Autores:Kaitlyn Greenidge (Autor)
Informação:Algonquin Books (2021), 336 pages
Colecções:2021, A sua biblioteca
Avaliação:****
Etiquetas:women-writers, wsv, bipoc-writers

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Libertie por Kaitlyn Greenidge

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» Ver também 5 menções

Mostrando 1-5 de 17 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Libertie is an engrossing read with lyrical, beautiful writing. It’s a haunting story of a young Black woman growing up in post-Civil War America as a free woman, but denied many of her rights because of her skin colour.

Libertie (named after her father’s interest in a free country for Negroes in Liberia) has always lived in her mother’s shadow. Her mother is a doctor, with her lighter skin offering her many freedoms that Libertie is denied. Her mother dreams of the day the two can work side by side as doctors, but doesn’t see white women recoiling from Libertie nor notice that Libertie’s heart is not in medicine. Libertie tries to be a keen student, but she knows that she doesn’t have the passion that drives her mother. Seeing her mother unable to cure some people, such as Ben Daisy who escaped from the south, plants seeds of doubt in Libertie’s mind. Libertie is everything to her mother, but Libertie chafes against her mother’s direction and assertions. Sent to an all-Black college in Ohio, Libertie finds that her mind is not on her studies in medicine and finds joy in music instead. Returning home, she finds herself enamoured of her mother’s protegee, Emmanuel. Can he offer the freedom she craves in Haiti? Or will Libertie need to find it on her own?

I really enjoyed the majority of the novel, but did lose interest when the setting moved to Haiti. The focus on Libertie tended to drift away as she became less interested in Emmanuel and his family. Her drawing away from them was necessary for her to define herself and what she wanted from life, but it all felt a little detached and far away. In contrast, Libertie’s time with her mother growing up and at college felt very focused and in close range. The reader is privy to every thought of Libertie, including those that question her mother and others in position of power. Through Libertie’s eyes, the reader gets an idea of what it is like to be Black during that time period. Despite being free, Libertie is denied a seat in a stagecoach (instead, she is ordered to ride on the roof for miles) and has people staring at her because of the colour of her skin. In Haiti, she is also an anomaly because of her skin, her new family and that she doesn’t speak the language. Her outsider status continues, just as her husband tells her that Haiti is the place for Black people. There, Libertie sees things she disagrees with and gains the strength to call it out. In that way, she achieves her own freedom and accepts her past.

The writing in Libertie is simply stunning, evoking emotion and a clear sense of the setting. The characters are just as fascinating. Libertie can make silly choices and be infuriating at times, but you can’t help but cheer her on. Her mother is all business, but glimpses of her deep love for Libertie shine through in unexpected ways. It’s a thought provoking read of interpretations of freedom as well as a coming of age story.

Thank you to Allen & Unwin for the copy of this book. My review is honest.

http://samstillreading.wordpress.com ( )
  birdsam0610 | Jul 24, 2021 |
This is a beautifully written historical novel by Kaitlyn Greenidge. If you look closely at this picture, you can see the red tabs that I stuck to pages when I found a particularly well-wrought sentence. There were dozens.

The setting is 1860s Brooklyn. I have to admit, part of the charm of the book was that this was a time and place that was fresh and unknown to me.

The line that opens the first section is this: "Se pa tout blesi ki geri. Not all wounds heal. 1860." The protagonist is Libertie Sampson, a young Black woman and the daughter of a doctor who can pass for white. Her mother intends that Libertie will join her medical practice, that they will be Dr. Sampson and daughter, but Libertie's interests lean elsewhere. The book begins in 1860, and we see through Libertie's eyes (told in first person POV) the world before the Civil War, during it, and afterwards, when Libertie moves to Haiti and experiences life there.

Despite being set during a war, this is not a book full of Huge Events. Rather, it's a thoughtful, poignant look at a mother and a daughter, striving to find their places in a world where everything is changing. It is also a nuanced meditation on race and our responsibilities toward others. I'm tempted to call it a coming-of-age story, and I would recommend it not only to adults but to YA readers, who I think will identify with Libertie's longings and hopes, her fears of disappointing her mother, and her desperate break with her early life that causes her to feel regret and brings about a growing awareness of herself.

I'm always entranced by authors who develop their secondary characters well. My favorite SCs in this novel are Experience and Louisa, two Black women singers, who are inspired by the Fisk Jubilee singers, all emancipated slaves, who formed an a cappella group that toured America and Europe to earn money to support Fisk University. The last section of the book, set in Haiti, was hard for me to read, as Libertie suffers emotional abuse at the hands of her husband Emmanuel's family. But her letter to her husband, at the end, is a satisfying triumph. ( )
  KarenOdden | Jul 21, 2021 |
My review of this book can be found on my Youtube Vlog at:

https://youtu.be/UB3GR2u7H9o

Enjoy! ( )
  booklover3258 | Jul 12, 2021 |
The story of Libertie Sampson, daughter of a Black female doctor in the Civil War and Reconstruction eras in the US, is slow-paced and extremely subtle. The way Greenidge weaves together themes and ideas of the nineteenth century with concerns about identity and racism today is very well done and never seems too abrupt or didactic. She has a good command of period-appropriate tone and language, and the story is incidental and character-driven. Gradually we build a picture of Libertie's coming of age and understanding of herself as a person in the world. I didn't love the section set in Haiti as much as the first 2/3 of the book, but this is definitely an author for me to watch. ( )
  sansmerci | Jun 22, 2021 |
I didn't really enjoy this and skimmed the last pages. The story has potential. It revolves around the life of a free Black woman doctor in the mid through late 1800s and her daughter, Liberties. The mother wants her daughter to become a doctor like her, but instead she marries a man and moves to Haiti. Her life there is not as promised.

There were interesting attempts at themes about escaping from slavery, creating Black communities, how these communities could and whether they should interact with whites. But in the end, I found the writing clumsy and never connected to any of the characters. The plot sort of meanders and the voice of the narrator just wasn't believable to me.

I've read much better books that cover the same general time period and themes. But, this book has also been widely praised, so don't avoid it on my account! ( )
  japaul22 | Jun 17, 2021 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 17 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
Kudos to the writer of this book. You did an amazing job. Why don't you try to join NovelStar's writing competition? You might win a prize, judging from the book I just read.
adicionada por AnnasThesia | editarLibraryThing.com, Annas Thesia
 
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