Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Cane River

Cane River
Author: Lalita Tademy
Source: My parents
Days to Read: 10

Cane River was another novel that my parents passed on to me over the holidays. The story follows four generations of women born into slavery and living in Louisiana. Each woman’s story is unique and each woman strives to create a better life for her children.  The novel begins with Elisabeth telling her story of working on the plantation as a cook and raising a family. At a young age, a white man rapes her daughter, Suzette.  Suzette soon becomes pregnant and over the years as the white man’s source of pleasure, has several children.  Philomene, her daughter, is a headstrong girl and from an early age knows she wants more for her family.  Philomene has children with a white businessman. Property and inheritance are only passed down to legitimate white children. Knowing this, Philomene uses her influence over her man to save money and educate her children. One of her daughters, Emily, falls in love with a successful white man who is friends with her father.  After the many generations of women partnering with white males, the family line has been significantly bleached and as a result, Emily and her siblings have a better start at life from the get go.

I enjoyed how each chapter in the book was the next generation and the story was then told from that woman’s perspective. It was also interesting to see how life changes with the passage of time for these women and their families.  For some reason I was never fully invested in any of the characters. I have thought about what it was that was missing and cannot put my finger on it! Regardless, the book is a good one but I did not love it.

I am thinking that I need to develop some type of rating system to give each book.  I will think on this and come up with something to implement with my next review! Happy reading :)
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