A Comet's Tale: A Novel about Sojourner Truth

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Overview

From Publishers Weekly
First-timer Sheehan offers an uneven but emotionally and lyrically powerful novelization of the life of Sojourner Truth. Born Isabella at the beginning of the 19th century, the future crusader for equality and justice spends nine years on a New York State farm with her wise mother and kind father before being sold-as a lot, along with sheep, at auction. Whipped for speaking her native Dutch, she begins to talk to God: "God is big to us, and we should speak...
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The Comet's Tale: A Novel About Sojourner Truth

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Overview

From Publishers Weekly
First-timer Sheehan offers an uneven but emotionally and lyrically powerful novelization of the life of Sojourner Truth. Born Isabella at the beginning of the 19th century, the future crusader for equality and justice spends nine years on a New York State farm with her wise mother and kind father before being sold-as a lot, along with sheep, at auction. Whipped for speaking her native Dutch, she begins to talk to God: "God is big to us, and we should speak to him under the biggest sky," her mother always said. So begin years of masters both kind and cruel, but none able to see her as a human-a blindness Isabella describes as one of the damages slavery inflicts on both slave and master. Though Isabella experiences indescribable horrors, she also finds love and desire; she even meets with rare self-sacrifice and aid from abolitionist whites, some helping her sue to get her son back from an illegal master. After she acquires her freedom and becomes a preacher, she falls in with a "house of seekers" led by a false prophet, Matthias, whom at first she stands by ("I did not survive slavery and see two husbands die of broken spirits to be put off so easily"), and from whose thrall she barely escapes. Isabella's strong, warm, distinctive voice is a genuine accomplishment, able to render tortures and prayers alike. Though the pacing is inconsistent, this is a disturbing and robust work, offering a new way of looking at one of history's greatest champions of freedom.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Booklist
Psychologist Sheehan offers a fictionalized account of the life of Sojourner Truth, relating the incredible saga of a woman who survived slavery and cruelty to become a fiery abolitionist orator. Sheehan's story is based on five years of research of public documents, including Truth's own Narrative of Sojourner Truth, which Sheehan's character describes as "weak tea." The novel is graphic in describing the cruelty and suffering inflicted on slave women as it explores the mental and emotional development of a young girl who is sold away from a loving family at the age of nine and thrown into the hands of a succession of cruel masters. Truth, who took her name from a divine inspiration, suffered the loss of the man she loved and later separation from her children, all the time receiving guidance from her conversations with God. Following Emancipation, she takes up with spiritualists before settling into a lifelong crusade for reparations for slaves and women's right to vote. Historical fiction fans will enjoy this sensitive portrayal of a slave woman's survival and triumph. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780984716531
  • Publisher: Greenforge Books
  • Publication date: 6/28/2012
  • Pages: 348
  • Sales rank: 814,519
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.72 (d)

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