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This title in other editions

Caucasia

by

Caucasia Cover

ISBN13: 9781573227162
ISBN10: 1573227161
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Awards

Winner of the 1998 BOMC Stephen Crane Award for First Fiction
One of Glamour's three Best Novels of the Year by a New Writer
One of the School Library Journal's 23 Best Adult Books for the Young Adult
One of the Los Angeles Times's Best Books of 1998
Winner of an Alex Award from the American Library Association for one of the top ten adult books for the teenager
Finalist for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother, intellectuals and activists in the Civil Rights Movement in 1970's Boston. The sisters are so close that they have created a private language, yet to the outside world they can't be sisters: Birdie appears to be white, while Cole is dark enough to fit in with the other kids at the Afrocentric school they attend. For Birdie, Cole is the mirror in which she can see her own blackness.

Then their parents' marriage falls apart. Their father's new black girlfriend won't even look at Birdie, while their mother gives her life over to the Movement: at night the sisters watch mysterious men arrive with bundles shaped like rifles.

One night Birdie watches her father and his girlfriend drive away with Cole — they have gone to Brazil, she will later learn, where her father hopes for a racial equality he will never find in the States. The next morning — in the belief that the Feds are after them — Birdie and her mother leave everything behind: their house and possessions, their friends, and — most disturbing of all — their identity. Passing as the daughter and wife of a deceased Jewish professor, Birdie and her mother finally make their home in New Hampshire. Desperate to find Cole, yet afraid of betraying her mother and herself to some unknown danger, Birdie must learn to navigate the white world — so that when she sets off in search of her sister, she is ready for what she will find.

Review:

"Senna brings an accomplished voice to this vivid comint-of-age tale, offering images sweet and sorrowful of a child caught on the fault line between races." USA Today

Review:

"Extraordinary....A cross between Mona Simpson's Anywhere But Here and James McBride's The Color of Water, this story of a young girl's struggle — to find her family, her roots, her identity — transcends race even while examining it. A compelling look at being black and being white, Caucasia deserves to be read all over." Glamour

Review:

"[An] absorbing debut novel...Senna superbly illustrates the emotional toll that politics and race take on one especially gutsy young girl's development as she makes her way through the parallel limbos between black and white and between girl and young woman....Senna gives new meaning to the twin universal desires for a lost childhood and a new adult self by recounting Birdie's struggle to become someone when she can look and act like anyone." The New York Times Book Review

Review:

"The visual conundrums woven through Danzy Senna's remarkable first novel [will] cling to your memory. There's Birdie, who takes after her mother's white, New England side of the family — light skin, straight hair. There's her big sister, Cole, who takes after her father, a radical black intellectual. It's the early seventies, and black-power politics divide their parents, who divide the sisters: Cole disappears with their father, and Birdie goes underground with their mother....[Senna] tells this coming-of-age tale with impressive beauty and power." Newsweek

Synopsis:

Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother, intellectuals and activists in the Civil Rights Movement in 1970s Boston. The sisters are so close that they have created a private language, yet to the outside world they can't be sisters: Birdie appears to be white, while Cole is dark enough to fit in with the other kids at the Afrocentric school they attend. For Birdie, Cole is the mirror in which she can see her own blackness.

Then their parents' marriage falls apart. Their father's new black girlfriend won't even look at Birdie, while their mother gives her life over to the Movement: at night the sisters watch mysterious men arrive with bundles shaped like rifles.

One night Birdie watches her father and his girlfriend drive away with Cole—they have gone to Brazil, she will later learn, where her father hopes for a racial equality he will never find in the States. The next morning—in the belief that the Feds are after them—Birdie and her mother leave everything behind: their house and possessions, their friends, and—most disturbing of all—their identity. Passing as the daughter and wife of a deceased Jewish professor, Birdie and her mother finally make their home in New Hampshire. Desperate to find Cole, yet afraid of betraying her mother and herself to some unknown danger, Birdie must learn to navigate the white world—so that when she sets off in search of her sister, she is ready for what she will find.

Synopsis:

Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother, intellectuals and activists in the Civil Rights Movement in 1970's Boston. The sisters are so close that they have created a private language, yet to the outside world they can't be sisters: Birdie appears to be white, while Cole is dark enough to fit in with the other kids at the Afrocentric school they attend. For Birdie, Cole is the mirror in which she can see her own blackness.

Then their parents' marriage falls apart. Their father's new black girlfriend won't even look at Birdie, while their mother gives her life over to the Movement: at night the sisters watch mysterious men arrive with bundles shaped like rifles.

One night Birdie watches her father and his girlfriend drive away with Cole—they have gone to Brazil, she will later learn, where her father hopes for a racial equality he will never find in the States. The next morning—in the belief that the Feds are after them—Birdie and her mother leave everything behind: their house and possessions, their friends, and—most disturbing of all—their identity. Passing as the daughter and wife of a deceased Jewish professor, Birdie and her mother finally make their home in New Hampshire. Desperate to find Cole, yet afraid of betraying her mother and herself to some unknown danger, Birdie must learn to navigate the white world—so that when she sets off in search of her sister, she is ready for what she will find.

About the Author

Danzy Senna's first novel, Caucasia, was the winner of the Book-of-the-Month Club's Stephen Crane Award for First Fiction and an American Library Association Alex Award. It was a finalist for an International IMPAC Dublin Award, and was a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. Her short fiction and essays have been widely anthologized. She is a recipient of the 2002 Whiting Writers' Award and currently holds the Jenks Chair of Contemporary American/Letters at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

Margareto, June 15, 2010 (view all comments by Margareto)
Great look into a kind of life I never thought about before. The writing made me feel like I could identify with the characters and their situation.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(2 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
inveterate_reader, January 21, 2010 (view all comments by inveterate_reader)
Birdie is one of the characters in literature that seems as real as your best friend in fifth grade. Senna, who, like her protagonist, is a biracial woman who looks white, paints an utterly believable portrait of a deep love that sours, of radical chic in the 70s, and of the struggle for authenticity that all adolescents face. One of my favorite novels, but I'm sad to say I can't recommend later works by this author.
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(2 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)
maricar_daron, January 31, 2008 (view all comments by maricar_daron)
It is a story good for the public...it shows the differences between people that would make them feel apart with each other..It is simply the racial discrimination between people...
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(4 of 6 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 5 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9781573227162
Author:
Senna, Danzy
Publisher:
Riverhead Books
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Boston (Mass.)
Subject:
Family saga
Subject:
Interracial marriage
Subject:
Interracial marriage -- Fiction.
Subject:
Racially mixed children.
Subject:
Psychological
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literary
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
19990231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
432
Dimensions:
8.04x5.14x.92 in. .77 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

Caucasia Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.50 In Stock
Product details 432 pages Riverhead Books - English 9781573227162 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Senna brings an accomplished voice to this vivid comint-of-age tale, offering images sweet and sorrowful of a child caught on the fault line between races."
"Review" by , "Extraordinary....A cross between Mona Simpson's Anywhere But Here and James McBride's The Color of Water, this story of a young girl's struggle — to find her family, her roots, her identity — transcends race even while examining it. A compelling look at being black and being white, Caucasia deserves to be read all over."
"Review" by , "[An] absorbing debut novel...Senna superbly illustrates the emotional toll that politics and race take on one especially gutsy young girl's development as she makes her way through the parallel limbos between black and white and between girl and young woman....Senna gives new meaning to the twin universal desires for a lost childhood and a new adult self by recounting Birdie's struggle to become someone when she can look and act like anyone."
"Review" by , "The visual conundrums woven through Danzy Senna's remarkable first novel [will] cling to your memory. There's Birdie, who takes after her mother's white, New England side of the family — light skin, straight hair. There's her big sister, Cole, who takes after her father, a radical black intellectual. It's the early seventies, and black-power politics divide their parents, who divide the sisters: Cole disappears with their father, and Birdie goes underground with their mother....[Senna] tells this coming-of-age tale with impressive beauty and power."
"Synopsis" by ,

Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother, intellectuals and activists in the Civil Rights Movement in 1970s Boston. The sisters are so close that they have created a private language, yet to the outside world they can't be sisters: Birdie appears to be white, while Cole is dark enough to fit in with the other kids at the Afrocentric school they attend. For Birdie, Cole is the mirror in which she can see her own blackness.

Then their parents' marriage falls apart. Their father's new black girlfriend won't even look at Birdie, while their mother gives her life over to the Movement: at night the sisters watch mysterious men arrive with bundles shaped like rifles.

One night Birdie watches her father and his girlfriend drive away with Cole—they have gone to Brazil, she will later learn, where her father hopes for a racial equality he will never find in the States. The next morning—in the belief that the Feds are after them—Birdie and her mother leave everything behind: their house and possessions, their friends, and—most disturbing of all—their identity. Passing as the daughter and wife of a deceased Jewish professor, Birdie and her mother finally make their home in New Hampshire. Desperate to find Cole, yet afraid of betraying her mother and herself to some unknown danger, Birdie must learn to navigate the white world—so that when she sets off in search of her sister, she is ready for what she will find.

"Synopsis" by ,

Birdie and Cole are the daughters of a black father and a white mother, intellectuals and activists in the Civil Rights Movement in 1970's Boston. The sisters are so close that they have created a private language, yet to the outside world they can't be sisters: Birdie appears to be white, while Cole is dark enough to fit in with the other kids at the Afrocentric school they attend. For Birdie, Cole is the mirror in which she can see her own blackness.

Then their parents' marriage falls apart. Their father's new black girlfriend won't even look at Birdie, while their mother gives her life over to the Movement: at night the sisters watch mysterious men arrive with bundles shaped like rifles.

One night Birdie watches her father and his girlfriend drive away with Cole—they have gone to Brazil, she will later learn, where her father hopes for a racial equality he will never find in the States. The next morning—in the belief that the Feds are after them—Birdie and her mother leave everything behind: their house and possessions, their friends, and—most disturbing of all—their identity. Passing as the daughter and wife of a deceased Jewish professor, Birdie and her mother finally make their home in New Hampshire. Desperate to find Cole, yet afraid of betraying her mother and herself to some unknown danger, Birdie must learn to navigate the white world—so that when she sets off in search of her sister, she is ready for what she will find.

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