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1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

The Farming of Bones

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The Farming of Bones Cover

ISBN13: 9781569471265
ISBN10: 1569471266
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

From Powells.com:

By 1996 Haitian-born author Edwidge Danticat had been nominated for the National Book Award for her collection Krik? Krak!, had gained national recognition from Oprah's Book Club for her novel Breath, Eyes, Memory, and had even been named one of Granta's twenty "Best Young American Novelists." This exceptional recognition was made even more significant by the fact that Krik? Krak! and Breath, Eyes, Memory, were her first collection and novel published – and both before she turned 26. The Farming of Bones, a 1998 New York Times Notable Book, is her homage to tens of thousands of Haitians who were slaughtered by their Dominican neighbors under Trujillo's rule in 1937. Against this historical background, Danticat stages the love story of Amabelle and Sebastien, two workers who are separated during the panicked flight of Haitians from Dominican borders. In the dreamlike manner characteristic of one who is profoundly damaged by tragedy and left to reshape her life, Amabelle relates her story in slow, selective, descriptive pieces. Danticat's sensually compelling and respectful treatment of one of the 20th century's most overlooked atrocities both mourns and honors the burden borne by the Haitian people, leaving behind an indelible memory of loss and endurance. Malia, Powells.com

Publisher Comments:

In a 1930s Dominican Republic village, the scream of a woman in labor rings out like the shot heard around Hispaniola. Every detail of the birth scene--the balance of power between the middle-aged Señora and her Haitian maid, the babies' skin color, not to mention which child is to survive--reverberates throughout Edwidge Danticat's Farming of Bones. In fact, rather than a celebration of fecundity, the unexpected double delivery gels into a metaphor for the military-sponsored mass murder of Haitian emigrants. As the Señora's doctor explains: "Many of us start out as twins in the belly and do away with the other."

But Danticat's powerful second novel is far from a currently modish victimization saga, and can hold its own with such modern classics as One Hundred Years of Solitude and The Color Purple. Its watchful narrator, the Señora's shy Haitian housemaid, describes herself as "one of those sea stones that sucks its colors inside and loses its translucence once it's taken out into the sun." An astute observer of human character, Amabelle Désir is also a conduit for the author's tart, poetic prose. Her lover, Sebastian, has "arms as wide as one of my bare thighs," while the Señora's complicit officer husband is "still shorter than the average man, even in his military boots."

The orphaned Amabelle comes to assume almost messianic proportions, but she is entirely fictional, as is the town of Alegría where the tale begins. The genocide and exodus, however, are factual. Indeed, the atrocities committed by Dominican president Rafael Trujillo's army back in 1937 rival those of Duvalier's Touton Macoutes. History has rendered Trujillo's carnage much less visible than Duvalier's, but no less painful. As Amabelle's father once told her, "Misery won't touch you gentle. It always leaves its thumbprints on you; sometimes it leaves them for others to see, sometimes for nobody but you to know of." Thanks to Danticat's stellar novel, the world will now know.

Review:

"Edwidge Danticat's strong and unique voice speaks in the language of hearts. She knows the dreams and hidden thoughts of her characters, and her readers. She takes us traveling down a river of blood. That river sings in our veins." Walter Mosley

Review:

"Sensuously atmospheric...perfectly paced...lushly poetic and erotic...and starkly realistic." Publishers Weekly

Synopsis:

It is 1937, the Dominican side of the Haitian border. Amabelle, orphaned at the age of eight when her parents drowned, is a maid to the young wife of an army colonel. She has grown up in this household, a faithful servant. Sebastien is a field hand, an itinerant sugarcane cutter. They are Haitians, useful to the Dominicans but not really welcome. There are rumors that in other towns Haitians are being persecuted, even killed. But there are always rumors.

Amabelle loves Sebastien. He is handsome despite the sugarcane scars on his face, his calloused hands. She longs to become his wife and walk into their future. Instead, terror enfolds them. But the story does not end here: it begins.

The Farming of the Bones is about love, fragility, barbarity, dignity, remembrance, and the only triumph possible for the persecuted: to endure.

Synopsis:

From the acclaimed author of "Krik? Krak!". 1937: On the Dominican side of the Haiti border, Amabelle, a maid to the young wife of an army colonel falls in love with sugarcane cutter Sebastien. She longs to become his wife and walk into their future. Instead, terror unfolds them. But the story does not end here: it begins.

About the Author

Edwidge Danticat was nominated for the National Book Award in 1995 for her story collection, Krik? Krak! Her first novel, Breath, Eyes, Memory, was published to acclaim when she was twenty-five.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

lukas, July 18, 2014 (view all comments by lukas)
I picked this up after reading Julia Alvarez's excellent "In the Time of the Butterflies," which is about life in the Dominican Republic under the brutal (and quietly U.S.-supported) Rafael Trujillo. Danticant Is a Haitian author and this story is set during the Trujillo ordered massacre of 1,000s of Haitians, often called the "Parsley" Massacre. Also, see "Feast of the Goat," "Dew Breaker," and "The Autumn of the Patriarch."
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781569471265
Author:
Danticat, Edwidge
Publisher:
Soho Press
Location:
New York, NY :
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Caribbean area
Subject:
Haiti Fiction.
Subject:
Genocide -- Dominican Republic -- Fiction.
Subject:
Plantation life -- Dominican Republic -- Fiction.
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Historical fiction
Subject:
Refugees -- Fiction.
Subject:
Refugees
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20030701
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
312
Dimensions:
8.00 x 5.00 in

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Farming of Bones Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$6.95 In Stock
Product details 312 pages Soho Press - English 9781569471265 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Edwidge Danticat's strong and unique voice speaks in the language of hearts. She knows the dreams and hidden thoughts of her characters, and her readers. She takes us traveling down a river of blood. That river sings in our veins."
"Review" by , "Sensuously atmospheric...perfectly paced...lushly poetic and erotic...and starkly realistic."
"Synopsis" by , It is 1937, the Dominican side of the Haitian border. Amabelle, orphaned at the age of eight when her parents drowned, is a maid to the young wife of an army colonel. She has grown up in this household, a faithful servant. Sebastien is a field hand, an itinerant sugarcane cutter. They are Haitians, useful to the Dominicans but not really welcome. There are rumors that in other towns Haitians are being persecuted, even killed. But there are always rumors.

Amabelle loves Sebastien. He is handsome despite the sugarcane scars on his face, his calloused hands. She longs to become his wife and walk into their future. Instead, terror enfolds them. But the story does not end here: it begins.

The Farming of the Bones is about love, fragility, barbarity, dignity, remembrance, and the only triumph possible for the persecuted: to endure.

"Synopsis" by , From the acclaimed author of "Krik? Krak!". 1937: On the Dominican side of the Haiti border, Amabelle, a maid to the young wife of an army colonel falls in love with sugarcane cutter Sebastien. She longs to become his wife and walk into their future. Instead, terror unfolds them. But the story does not end here: it begins.
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