Powerful tragedy distilled into a small masterpiece by the Nobel Prize winning author of Beloved and, like a prelude to that story, set two centuries earlier. n the 1680s the slave trade was still in its infancy. In the Americas, virulent religious and class division, prejudice and oppression were rife, providing the fertile soil in which slavery and race hatred were carefully planted and took root. Jacob is an Anglo-Dutch trader and adventurer, with a smallholding in the harsh North. Despite his distaste for dealing in flesh , he takes a small slave girl in part payment for a bad debt from a plantation owner in Catholic Maryland. Her slave mother has urged him to take her This is Florens, with the hands of a slave and the feet of a Portuguese lady , who can read and write and might be useful on his farm. Rejected by her mother, Florens looks for love, first from Lina, an older servant woman at her new master s house, but later from the handsome blacksmith, an African, never enslaved, who comes riding into their lives here are other voices- the native American Lina, whose tribe was decimated by smallpox; their mistress Rebekka, herself a victim of religious persecution back
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Toni Morrison was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. She is the author of many novels, including The Bluest Eye, Beloved (made into a major film), Paradise and Love. She has also received the National Book Critics Circle Award and a Pulitzer Prize for her fiction.
A Mercy, A by Toni Morrison
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