Homegoing (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews


For 300 years the story follows the fates of the descendants of two sisters.  From the slave trade in Ghana to the plantations of the American South, from African Colonial Rule to the Civil War and its aftermath, as each generation moves forward the story describes their lives.  Effia’s father has big plans for his beautiful daughter.  He hopes to wed her to the young chief thus securing a prominent position for his family in their tribe.  Scheming for a higher bride price and to be rid of this unwanted daughter, his wife arranges a “marriage” to one of the Brits at the Castle.  James Collins is kind to Effia, she lives in the Castle overlooking the sea on the coast of Ghana.  Esi’s fate is not so good, while Effia resides in comfort; Esi is crowded into the dark, fetid dungeon below the Castle, subjected to cruelty and deprivation.  Soon she is loaded onto a ship, transported in horrible conditions to the American South, and sold into slavery where she will live out her brief unhappy life.  Each generation will face challenges; the effect of selling fellow Africans into slavery on the tribes of Ghana, life as a slave in the American South, the years when a free black could be grabbed off the streets of the north to be sold into slavery in the south, the decades when to be black limited choices on jobs, housing, where you could dine, while passing for white opened those opportunities, the racial tensions of the 60’s and so much more.  This book moves with a blistering pace through history, illuminating lives and captivating readers.  Yaa Gyasi has a powerful voice and a brilliant use of story.

— Deon Stonehouse

June 2016 Indie Next List


“Homegoing is an epic narrative that is sure to become a treasured staple. Two sisters in Ghana are marked by fiery tragedy: one is married off to an English slave trader, and the other is sold to be a slave in America. The story follows their descendants generation by generation. Homegoing will break your heart over and over, impress you with the resilience of the human spirit and the amazing power of forgiveness, and leave you optimistic and in awe.”
— Nichole McCown (E), Bookshop Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA

Description


"Homegoing is an inspiration." --Ta-Nehisi Coates

An unforgettable New York Times bestseller of exceptional scope and sweeping vision that traces the descendants of two sisters across three hundred years in Ghana and America.

A riveting kaleidoscopic debut novel and the beginning of a major career: Yaa Gyasi's Homegoing is a novel about race, history, ancestry, love and time, charting the course of two sisters torn apart in 18th century Africa through to the present day.
Two half sisters, Effia and Esi, unknown to each other, are born into two different tribal villages in 18th century Ghana. Effia will be married off to an English colonist, and will live in comfort in the sprawling, palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle, raising "half-caste" children who will be sent abroad to be educated in England before returning to the Gold Coast to serve as administrators of the Empire. Her sister, Esi, will be imprisoned beneath Effia in the Castle's women's dungeon, before being shipped off on a boat bound for America, where she will be sold into slavery.
Stretching from the tribal wars of Ghana to slavery and Civil War in America, from the coal mines in the north to the Great Migration to the streets of 20th century Harlem, Yaa Gyasi has written a modern masterpiece, a novel that moves through histories and geographies and--with outstanding economy and force--captures the intricacies of the troubled yet hopeful human spirit.

About the Author


YAA GYASI was born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama. She is a recent graduate of the presitigious Iowa Writers' Workshop where she held a Dean's Graduate Research Fellowship. Her short stories have appeared in African American Review and Callaloo. Homegoing is her debut novel.
Product Details
ISBN: 9789577412300
ISBN-10: 9577412300
Publisher: Chun Tian Chu Ban
Publication Date: August 30th, 2019
Language: Chinese