This month, our book club decided to read The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill. I had wanted to read it for ages, so I was excited by the prospect. It definitely took me longer to get through than I expected, though. The book, for those who haven’t read it, is incredibly powerful. It follows the life of Aminata, a young African woman who is stolen from her home at age 11 and shipped to the U.S. to become a slave on an American plantation.
Along the way she learns to read and to write and to speak many languages. She uses her skills to challenge her oppressors and to create unique relationships as she moves from through cities, countries and continents on an incredible journey. The book is beautifully written but also incredibly heartbreaking in places. It took me so much longer to read than most books because some parts just hurt my heart too much to take in large chunks.
Thankfully, the amazing book community I have on Twitter encouraged me to keep reading and it was so worth it. The Book of Negroes is definitely one of the most important books I’ve ever read and I feel like I will carry a piece of it with me moving forward. I can’t wait to discuss it at book club and see if others have been similarly affected.
Have you read The Book of Negroes? What did you think?