Customer Reviews for

The Twelve Tribes of Hattie

Average Rating 3.5
( 274 )
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(94)

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(43)

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(35)

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(28)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

21 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

I don't always agree with Oprah, but this one is definitely a wi

I don't always agree with Oprah, but this one is definitely a winner. Grabs you from the beginning and doesn't lrt go.

posted by Hipster_dufas1 on December 6, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

26 out of 43 people found this review helpful.

Drivel

I hate this kind of writing. There is no plot, no moral, no fully formed characters. There also are no redeeming features to this depressing drivel whatsoever. It reminds me of high school girls writing overly dramatic essays full of 'OMG!' That speaks to the depth of t...
I hate this kind of writing. There is no plot, no moral, no fully formed characters. There also are no redeeming features to this depressing drivel whatsoever. It reminds me of high school girls writing overly dramatic essays full of 'OMG!' That speaks to the depth of the novel adequately. Perhaps someday this author can find a true voice which speaks of joy, redemption, or lessons learned. Or, novel idea, tells a STORY! I admit I was caught by the Oprah hook, much to my regret. Readers, find a good book to spend your hard earned dollars on and give this author a wide berth until she really has something to say.

posted by Anonymous on December 24, 2012

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Sort by: Showing 21 – 40 of 274 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2013

    Slow and depressing...did not finish it.

    I was so excited to start this book after hearing about it, but I just couldn't believe how slow it moved. Sad and depressing and I didn't think it was particularly well-written. I did not make it to the end. I may try again, but I was disappointed to say the least.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    Absolutely one of my favorites

    This is one of the best books I have ever read, and i am dissapointed to see others reviews. The story is told in a family's point of view as opposed to just a single character's view, and as unlikable or difficult one character is, you see thier view and understand them. Highly recommended. I am so glad i found this book, I didn't want it to end.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2012

    This sounds very interesting. Good luck with reviews Ronna Gage

    This sounds very interesting. Good luck with reviews
    Ronna Gage romance author

    2 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2014

    Good book

    Very good book only wish the writer would have told how.each child's life was either made better or how what happened to them. And nothing else was mentioned about the daughter hattie had by Lawrence. I really liked the book but was left with questions.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2014

    Pass on it

    Read it with our book club. Did not care for the writing as it was awkward. The format of each chapter being on a different person and time was interesting and unique. Stories were depressing and most of the characters very strange. Would have liked just a few to be achievers or overcome their circumstances. What an odd collection. The think I liked the least is that there seemed to be no message or lesson here about life. What a sad glimpse into a family's life.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2013

    Siblings

    I really enjoyed this book. Read it before Oprah put it on her list. My mom came from a big family like this. It helped me realize how no matter how much a mother loves her children each child does not receive it the same and shouldn't be treated the same. You can never tell how your children will turn out.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 9, 2013

    Over the years, I've developed an affinity for the short story f

    Over the years, I've developed an affinity for the short story format that I once despised. Mathis uses the Great Migration of African-Americans from the South to the North to kick off this saga of a family's history told through linked short stories. After moving from Georgia to Philadelphia, 15 year old Hattie and her husband August have settled in their new city and are celebrating the birth of their twins, Philadelphia and Jubilee. In the first story, named for the twins, Hattie is nursing them through a bout of pneumonia. 




    Two pages in, I was hooked. The writing was so vivid and beautiful that I felt that I was in the room with those sick babies and was moved to tears while reading on my commute to work. (I'm sure the other passengers thought I was going through some things.)  Each subsequent chapter focuses on the couple's 9 other children and takes us from 1925 to the 1980's giving us insight not only into the lives of each person, but also the nature of the family dynamic and each person's role in it. Children from large families at times have very different relationships with their parents than their siblings and I love that each story reflected that while also checking in with Hattie and August.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Ayana Mathis¿The Twelve Tribes of Hattie was an emotional journe

    Ayana Mathis’The Twelve Tribes of Hattie was an emotional journey from beginning to the very last word of the book. The dynamics in which she portrayed her tribes left many readers unsure about, although obvious, to me, whom was Hattie’s ‘twelfth tribe’.

    Hattie-- a courageous, callous, strong yet loving mother and wife left a lot to be desired. She was described as a beautiful woman physically but life circumstances created an ‘undesired’ and ‘unfair’ portrait of her. The author amazingly draws you into Hattie’s and the characters life with vivid depictions of the times and environment. Leaving no stone unturned current issues we face and struggle with today were very much apparent in times past – marital woes, infidelity, sexual identity crisis, discrimination, sibling relationships, forgiveness, mental illness, poverty and suffering.

    Every reader will relate to some part of Hattie and the characters, even if it’s just a micro inkling of that ‘something’ that will cause some comfort to know that ‘there indeed isn’t anything new under the sun’ and at that point is when you will begin to understand Hattie and not judge her so harshly. However, you have to remove your shades of judgment as you visit each tribe …hang in there, exercise patience. The kind of patience you feel you deserve when you make decisions that were not very wise and pray that you are given another opportunity for a ‘do over’.

    As a mother, I know we sometimes have to make decisions to ‘the best of our ability’ that those looking from the outside don’t understand. Granted ‘the best of our ability’ entails many components such as our past experiences, emotions, education & the duty of the moment that many aren’t privy too or would approve. Having been in need of ‘grace & mercy’ in my past, present and days to come ‘The Twelve Tribes of Hattie’ enlightened my remembrance of the NEW mercies God grants us every morning! I purposely didn’t disclose a lot of details about the book because I hope that if you haven’t read it this review will entice you to do so and then come back and join the discussion.

    I felt Hattie was a complex character and the more I read the more I began to see the beauty in the picture Mathis was painting. But as the dots began to form visually for me the more I began to strike my presupposition of labeling her callous to realizing it was strength, yet strange and somewhat foreign. As I closed my Kindle I became hopeful and was gently nudged to remember ‘change is possible’!

    To my BBC members and our Facebook Friends who have read the book please briefly share your thoughts of Hattie or any of the other characters.

    ~ Katie
    Brownstone Book Club Member

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 6, 2013

    Worthwhile read.  A look at how our choices, other's choices and

    Worthwhile read.  A look at how our choices, other's choices and our community can affect our lives and the lives of those we love.  Many mother's of young children can related how you pulled in so many levels to meet so many needs  that at the end of the day you have nothing left for yourself.  Multiply those feeling times 11 children and a useless husband.  You are the sole responsible one.  You understand how Hattie is looked at as a "General" by her children, cold and unfeeling.  She is just "trying to the best she can" and get her children for the real world. Many didn't like the abrupt ending.  I thought it was wonderful.  In her granddaughter she realizes she can support her without pushing her away.  She had the courage to give Sala tenderness,  although "rough", which was a huge stepping step for Hattie after 55 years of being "the general."

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 22, 2013

    TRASH! What could have been a sympathetic account of a black wom

    TRASH! What could have been a sympathetic account of a black woman's struggles and travails, the loss of her two young children, by the second chapter took a plunge into gratuitous filth of the kind once peddled under plain brown wrappers. Worse yet was the message of Hattie raising her children without affection or kindness so that they could survive in a cruel world, a prescription for sociopathic behavior, depression, or suicide. If this book was screened at all, it was not past the first few pages. Oprah should have read it and not given her uncritical endorsement simply because the author was young, aspiring, and black.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    It started good but it was all over the place. Struggled through

    It started good but it was all over the place. Struggled through bits of it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 31, 2012

    Disappointing, Oprah missed the mark on this one. Just a bunch

    Disappointing, Oprah missed the mark on this one. Just a bunch of chapters with no glue really holding it together except for a bit of Hattie. Seemed like a bunch of dry newspaper clippings with no beginning and an awful ending. Didn't find any substance to this book, no realy story. I thought because Oprah recommended it that it would have been better. I found it really quite boring.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2012

    Her words speak to my core being

    After reading this amazing novel, I had an epiphany of what sisterhood and brotherhood truly are - sharing to edify another - no familial ties required. Oprah and Ayana expressed sisterhood in sharing these words and realities with me. Ayana Mathis and Toni Morrison surely share a similar spirit. This book will linger in my heart. Thank you, Ayana!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2012

    Good read

    I purposely did not read reviews of this book before buying the book. I tend to enjoy books like this one and figured it was a bonus because Oprah had chosen the book. I thought the book was very good. I understood Hattie and I imagined what life could have been like for my ancestors who also migrated to Philadelphia from the south. You won't get a happy ending, but you get a very realistic story with a very realistic ending...the writing is vivid and beautiful as it paints the picture of mother's experience as the head of her family...
    Yu

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Very amateurish writing. Had to force myself thru it. Much like

    Very amateurish writing. Had to force myself thru it. Much like Oprahs highly recommended pot pie, this failed to deliver!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2012

    I agree with the people that talk about jumping around.  I did n

    I agree with the people that talk about jumping around.  I did not have too much trouble with that, but like others have mentioned, it ended so suddenly.  My nook said that I had 30 pages left, and then, it was over.  The rest was discussion questions.  I would have liked to learn more about the characters and would have like to see some of their conflicts resolved.  But, that is just me!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2012

    Wonderful

    Loved this book! Hate it ended so soon.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2015

    Disappointing

    Full of smut and would lead you to believe all stereotypes about black sexuality and breeding like rabbits.

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  • Posted November 18, 2014

    HAVEN'T READ IT YET STILL WAITING

    I CAN'T WRITE A REVIEW, I HAVEN'T GOTTEN MY BOOK YET. BUT I SEE SEE WHERE YOU ALL HAVE TAKEN THE MONEY FROM MY ACCOUNT. IS IT ON BACK ORDER OR SOMETHING?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    wow I love your book

    wow I love your book

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