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Black studies
women's studies

The Invention of Wings

 
 
Author
Sue Monk Kidd.
Publisher Penguin  
Format paperback
Product Dimensions 7.75 x 5.1 x 0.75 inches
ISBN 9780143121701
Pages/Publication Date 373/2014
Daedalus Item Code 61642
List Price: $17.00
Sale Price: $4.98
You Save: $12.02
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(The 2014 Oprah's Book Club 2.0 Selection) Following The Secret Life of Bees and The Mermaid Chair, Sue Monk Kidd's third novel presents the remarkable journeys of two women in the Grimké household of antebellum Charleston—urban slave Hetty, called "Handful," and the Grimkés' idealistic daughter Sarah. Inspired by the historical figure of abolitionist and suffragette Sarah Grimké, Kidd's novel begins with Sarah's 11th birthday, when she is given ownership of 10-year-old Handful. The story follows these two women over the next 35 years as they shape each other's destinies and form a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement, and the uneasy ways of love.

"Inspired by the true story of early 19th-century abolitionist and suffragist Sarah Grimké, Kidd paints a moving portrait of two women inextricably linked by the horrors of slavery. Sarah, daughter of a wealthy South Carolina plantation owner, exhibits an independent spirit and strong belief in the equality of all. Thwarted from her dreams of becoming a lawyer, she struggles throughout life to find an outlet for her convictions. Handful, a slave in the Grimké household, displays a sharp intellect and brave, rebellious disposition. She maintains a compliant exterior, while planning for a brighter future. Told in first person, the chapters alternate between the two main characters' perspectives, as we follow their unlikely friendship (characterized by both respect and resentment) from childhood to middle age. While their pain and struggle cannot be equated, both women strive to be set free—Sarah from the bonds of patriarchy and Southern bigotry, and Handful from the inhuman bonds of slavery. Kidd is a master storyteller, and, with smooth and graceful prose, she immerses the reader in the lives of these fascinating women as they navigate religion, family drama, slave revolts, and the abolitionist movement."—Booklist (starred review)

 
 
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