Synopses & Reviews
For Abeje and her brother Adunbi, home is the slave quarters of a Caribbean sugar plantation on the Island of Martinique. Under the watchful eye of their mother, they thrive despite what threatens to break them. But when one night of brutality leaves the two children orphaned, it is the strength of their extraordinary bond that carries them through. Abeje finds her calling in the natural world, developing a spiritual connection to plants that earns her place as a well-loved and respected healer on the island. Adunbi finds love with a young woman who gives birth to Ayo, a beautiful daughter born into slavery who finds her way to Quebec City while working as a maid. It is there that she discovers a talent for piano and meets a bold saddler's apprentice named Dax Rougeaux. In literary prose, award-winning author Jenny Jaeckel creates a brilliantly imagined epic, weaving a multi-layered narrative that celebrates the Rougeaux family while exposing systemic brutalization. As each new member of the family takes the spotlight, a fresh piece of the puzzle is illuminated until at last, after a span of nearly two centuries, the end brings us back to the beginning. Jaeckel masterfully blends genres of mysticism, coming-of-age, folklore, and historical fiction with explorations of gender and race, creating a wondrous tale of hope and healing. A relevant work of love, determination, and the many small achievements that make up greatness, this book draws a new map of what it means to be family.