Synopses & Reviews
In this first installment of his epic Haitian trilogy, Madison Smartt Bell brings to life a decisive moment in the history of race, class, and colonialism. The slave uprising in Haiti was a momentous contribution to the tide of revolution that swept over the Western world at the end of the 1700s. A brutal rebellion that strove to overturn a vicious system of slavery, the uprising successfully transformed Haiti from a European colony to the worlds first Black republic. From the center of this horrific maelstrom, the heroic figure of Toussaint Louverture-a loyal, literate slave and both a devout Catholic and Vodouisant-emerges as the man who will take the merciless fires of violence and vengeance and forge a revolutionary war fueled by liberty and equality.
Bell assembles a kaleidoscopic portrait of this seminal movement through a tableau of characters that encompass black, white, male, female, rich, poor, free and enslaved. Pulsing with brilliant detail, All Souls Rising provides a visceral sense of the pain, terror, confusion, and triumph of revolution.
"A major work, a triumph of both storytelling and inspired historical analysis." Robert Stone
"Bell's luminous, intelligent novel...is magnificent. It restores my faith in the energy of American fiction." Barbara Probst Solomon
"A powerful and intelligent novel.... Historical fiction in the monumental manner." The New York Times Book Review
"A beautifully composed, eloquent, grand nightmare of a book. With it, Bell becomes as remarkable a historical novelist as we have in this country." Harold Bloom
"Remarkable....All Souls' Rising deserves to be read for its fictional representation of history and for its compelling characterizations. But its political importance should not be underestimated....Bell's excursion into revolutionary Haiti is the attempt of an undaunted novelist to stand face to face, as it were, with the prehistory of our own racial divisiveness....An important book." The Oregonian
One of the most prolific and gifted writers at work today presents an epic novel of astonishing depth and range about the black uprising in Haiti 200 years ago. A remarkable retelling of an episode of racial hatred at its most visceral and most unimaginably destructive, All Souls' Rising is Bell's most ambitious, most deeply satisfying novel to date.
"From the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Madison Smartt Bell is the author of fourteen works of fiction, including The Stone That the Builder Refused
; Master of the Crossroads
; Save Me, Joe Louis
; Dr. Sleep
; Soldier's Joy
; and Ten Indians
. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland with his family and teaches at Goucher College.