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5.0 out of 5 stars Caribbean Diaspora, 25 Jun 2003
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P. Cuder Dominguez (Spain) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: At the Full and Change of the Moon (Paperback)
This is Dionne Brand's second novel, and her best narrative effort so far. Each of the chapters of the novel tells the life of one of the many descendants of Marie Ursule, an African slave in early 19th-century Trinidad. Male or female, living in Trinidad, Venezuela, Canada, the United States or the Netherlands, they all share a cultural heritage and a sense of being "family" which confers structural and ideological unity to the narrative.
The novel starts with the forced relocation of African Marie Ursule as she is sold from one plantation to the next due to her rebelliousness and insolence, and continues by tracing the criss-crossing paths of her descendants over North America, the Caribbean and Europe. Some leave home in order to escape the nightmare their life has become: Cordelia, for instance, leaves her Venezuelan home and comes to the island in order to forget her father's incestuous harassment. Others are trying to improve their prospects, like Maya, who earns her living in Amsterdam's red-light district, or Priest, who sells drugs in New York City. Yet other members of this extended family are simply trying to do what they think is right, like Private Sones, who joined the Second West India Regiment in 1917 in order to fight for the country he had thought his, Great Britain, and returned a broken man. All the stories are engaging, and often truly poignant. A must read.
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At the Full and Change of the Moon
At the Full and Change of the Moon by Dionne Brand (Paperback - Sep 2000)
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