The Autobiography of My Mother: A Novel
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The Autobiography of My Mother: A Novel

2.8 5
by Jamaica Kincaid
     
 

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From the recipient of the 2010 Clifton Fadiman Medal, an unforgettable novel of one woman's courageous coming-of-age

Powerful, disturbing, stirring, Jamaica Kincaid's novel is the deeply charged story of a woman's life on the island of Dominica. Xuela Claudette Richardson, the daughter of a Carib mother and a half-Scottish, half-African father, loses her

Overview

From the recipient of the 2010 Clifton Fadiman Medal, an unforgettable novel of one woman's courageous coming-of-age

Powerful, disturbing, stirring, Jamaica Kincaid's novel is the deeply charged story of a woman's life on the island of Dominica. Xuela Claudette Richardson, the daughter of a Carib mother and a half-Scottish, half-African father, loses her mother to death the moment she is born and must find her way on her own.
Kincaid takes us from Xuela's childhood in a home where she can hear the song of the sea to the tin-roofed room where she lives as a schoolgirl in the house of Jack LaBatte, who becomes her first lover. Xuela develops a passion for the stevedore Roland, who steals bolts of Irish linen for her from the ships he unloads, but she eventually marries an English doctor, Philip Bailey. Xuela's is an intensely physical world, redolent of overripe fruit, gentian violet, sulfur, and rain on the road, and it seethes with her sorrow, her deep sympathy for those who share her history, her fear of her father, her desperate loneliness. But underlying all is "the black room of the world" that is Xuela's barrenness and motherlessness.
The Autobiography of My Mother is a story of love, fear, loss, and the forging of character, an account of one woman's inexorable evolution, evoked in startling and magical poetry.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Fierce, incantory . . . lyrical . . . powerful and disturbing.” —Michiko Kakutani, New York Times

“Kincaid, always an elegant stylist, makes this story of a simple woman extraordinary . . . filling her prose with rich, poetic detail . . . An unforgettable account of singular survival.” —San Francisco Chronicle Book Review

“A book that comes both to haunt and to dazzle us . . . [Kincaid] writes like an angel: with enviable lucidity and precision and a lyric touch that frequently aspires to the condition of poetry.” —Boston Sunday Globe

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780374531874
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date:
05/07/2013
Series:
FSG Classics Series
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
594,415
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Jamaica Kincaid was born in St. John's, Antigua. Her books include At the Bottom of the River, Annie John, Lucy, My Brother, and See Now Then, all published by FSG. She lives with her family in Vermont.

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Autobiography of My Mother 2.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
HildasSon More than 1 year ago
A definite read filled with a mixture stark experiences and allegory...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ashleighbh More than 1 year ago
This must not be my preferred style of book. I kept waiting for the story to get interesting, but no such luck. The author was very descriptive, but the descriptions seemed to wander off track. By the time I would finish one of the many unnecessarily long sentences I would forget what she was originally talking about.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago