When seventeen-year-old Nora White successfully graduates High School in 1922 Mississippi and is College bound, everyone is overjoyed and excited. Everyone except Nora. She dreams of Harlem, Cotton Clubs, Fancy Dresses, and Langston Hughes. For years, she's sat under Mr. Oak, the big oak tree on the plush green grass of her families five acres, and daydreamed of The Black Mecca.
The ambitious, young Nora is fascinated by the prospect of being a famous writer in The Harlem Renaissance and decides she doesn't want to go to College. Despite her parent's staunch protest, Nora finds herself in Jacobsville, New York, a small town forty-five minutes outside of Harlem.
Shocked by their daughter's disappearance, Gideon and Molly White are plagued with visions of the deadly south, like the brutal lynching of Gideon's sister years ago. As the couple embarks on a frightening and gut wrenching search for Nora, they are each stalked by their own traumatic past. Meanwhile, Nora learns that the North is not all it's cracked up to be.
Can Gideon and Molly overcome their disturbing past in time to find their daughter before it's too late?
|Publisher:||Literary Korner Publishing|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.37(d)|
About the Author
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Renaissance by Yecheyliah Ysrayl is recognizably the first installment of a longer story. It is mostly introduction and we are indeed introduced to a whole world, the Harlem Renaissance, and what it meant for an entire generation of artists. The story is split into two main plots, one following Nora, a young aspiring author who finds her way in among the most influential artists of the Renaissance, and one following her parents in the South, who have lost all news of her and have to face not just her disappearance, but also the consequences of multiple events in the past. There’s a vast and varied cast of characters that, especially in Nora’s parents’ section, gives a very strong sense of community, whereas Nora’s section is crowded with big names of the Renaissance scene. Personally, I enjoyed the ‘southern’ thread more – besides, reading about ‘normal’ people is always my preference. But I liked the Renaissance thread too because it revolves around true events and offers a vision of the movement that is seldom seen: not just the excitement and the advancement of Africa American art and experience, but also more shady relationships that supported it. The characters all sound real. I really really liked all the dialogues, it seems like hearing true people speaking. Even the crowd scenes (and there are a few in the ‘southern’ thread) are involving and easy to follow. There is one thing that halted me in places: the story is very fragmented. We have the two main threads that sometimes intertwine in odd places, but we also have lots of flashbacks, sometimes one inside the other. It never resulted in confusion, but I did find it unnecessarily complicated, especially because rather than support each other, these multiple threads happening at different times seems to scatter the story. It resulting in a difficulty – at least on my part – to see a direction in the novel. But apart from this, it was a fine, easy read. I enjoyed it.