reviewed by two staff members
In the spirit of The Secret Life of Bees, Kidd follows the story of a woman coming of age. This time the subject is slavery and subsequently abolition, told through the experiences of Sarah Grimke. What Kidd doesn't reveal until the Afterword is that Sarah and her sister were flesh and blood Southern elite, living in Charleston, SC. Read the Afterword first and appreciate the historical context of the novel.
Human Resources Representative
Sarah Grimke was an abolitionist, writer and feminist in the early 19th century. This fictional book was inspired by an important woman's life and the lives of the slaves her family owned in Charleston, South Carolina. "Handful" Grimke is given to Sarah as a gift on her 11th birthday to be her handmaid. Sarah and Handful develop a very complex relationship over 35 years, as they each try to find their place in the world. Even though this is a very intense subject, the book is a quick read and I enjoyed it.