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If Sons, Then Heirsby Lorene Cary
Synopses & Reviews
The critically acclaimed author of Black Ice, Pride, and The Price of a Child offers this deeply moving story of a familys challenge to reunite, understand the truth about its past, and secure its legacy.
Called a “well-paced, entertaining novel woven of many strands” by Kirkus Reviews and “a powerful take on family, history” by The Philadelphia Tribune, Lorene Carys brilliantly rendered tour de force explores the enduring bonds of blood, love, and the haunting consequences of the past. If Sons, Then Heirs sheds light on the largely untold story of African-American land ownership and racial hatred as seen through the eyes of the Needham family, whose members migrate north from South Carolina following the violent death of their patriarch, King. His devoted widow remains on the old home place to raise the children, but the responsibility to bring the family back together and save the land ultimately falls on Kings great-grandson, Rayne. Carys vividly drawn characters face challenges that mirror the experiences of families everywhere, but their distinct and unique voices will stay with readers forever.
“An absorbing and moving tale” (Publishers Weekly)—a uniquely American story of the consequences of past decisions on present realities.
After World War II, the Needham family moved north to Philadelphia from South Carolina, leaving behind the tragic injustice surrounding the violent death of their patriarch, King. His devoted widow, Selma, remains on the old home place. Over the years, she raises King’s children, including his great-grandson, Rayne, on whom falls the responsibility of bringing the family together, saving the family land, and mending the rift with his mother.
If Sons, Then Heirs is a tour de force that explores the power of family secrets, bonds, and love. Rayne and the other characters face challenges big and small that mirror the experiences of families everywhere. But in the masterful storytelling of Lorene Cary, their voices are so distinct and unique that they will live in the minds of readers long after the last page is read.
About the Author
Lorene Cary is the author of Pride and Black Ice, which was a 1992 American Library Association Notable Book. Cary currently lectures in creative writing at the University of Pennsylvania. She founded Art Sanctuary, a model non-profit lecture and performance series. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband and two daughters.
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