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The Book of Negroes

A Novel
Written by: Lawrence Hill
Length: 15 hrs and 46 mins
5 out of 5 stars (165 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Abducted as an 11-year-old child from her village in West Africa and forced to walk for months to the sea in a coffle - a string of slaves - Aminata Diallo is sent to live as a slave in South Carolina. But years later she forges her way to freedom, serving the British in the Revolutionary War and registering her name in the historic Book of Negroes. This book, an actual document, provides a short but immensely revealing record of freed loyalist slaves who requested permission to leave the United States for resettlement in Nova Scotia, only to find that the haven they sought was steeped in an oppression all its own.

Aminata's eventual return to Sierra Leone - passing ships carrying thousands of slaves bound for America - is an engrossing account of an obscure but important chapter in history that saw 1,200 former slaves embark on a harrowing back-to-Africa odyssey.

Lawrence Hill is a master at transforming the neglected corners of history into brilliant imaginings, as engaging and revealing as only the best historical fiction can be. A sweeping story that transports the listener from a tribal African village to a plantation in the Southern United States, from the teeming Halifax docks to the manor houses of London, The Book of Negroes introduces one of the strongest female characters in recent Canadian fiction, one who cuts a swath through a world hostile to her colour and her sex.

©2007 Lawrence Hill Creative Services, Inc. (P)2016 Jody Colero for Silent Joe Inc

What members say

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One of the best listens to date.

Everyone who's able should hear Mr. Hill's book. Powerful imagery...amazing story line. Perhaps predictable in some spots but that's what keeps one interested. The narration was excellent. I would recommend this to anyone.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Brilliantly told painful story of our story

It was hard at times to listen to some of the painful things that our people endured to come to North America and the Caribbean but it's important that we never forget our struggles and how far we have come. I would definitely recommend this book to all people.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Amazing

loved this book, would highly recommend it and seen the TV series but of course is nothing in comparison

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Human face to the slave trade

This is the first really political novel that I’ve listened to on audible and I was impressed. The narrator was fantastic and the story does a really good job of balancing the reader/listener’s need for narrative cohesion with a historian’s awareness of the inevitability of loose ends.
What’s interesting is that the anti-abolitionists are not stock-bad-guys. They simply lack empathy and believe that slavery is a natural institution and that it’s not as bad people think. It puts them in the category that Hannah Ardendt called the banality of evil.
The best compliment you can give this type of story is that I learnt truth from the fiction.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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STUNNING

I absolutely cannot get enough of this book I will sit in my vehicle finishing a chapter when I get home just because I need to finish it because it's that good it's like a movie playing in my head absolutely spectacular #Audible1

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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I suffered pangs of withdrawal when it ended.

I loved this book. I loved this story. I loved this narrator. Will listen again and will be recommending most insistently to my friends and family. Listen to this book and learn.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Wow!

I was hooked from the get-go. Top-notch writing with one heart-wrenching moment after another. Interesting characters that shed light on a very dark subject. A must-be-listened-to audio book.

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Thoroughly Engaging!

The story telling captures the essence of the life of a slave and her endurance, perseverance and use of all of her intellectual faculties to not just survive but become a world shaker in a time when it seemed impossible. Never, Ever give up on yourself... is my take away.

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What a great book!

Captivating and beautifully written and performed, a panoramic, yet intimate guide to the plight of black people under the pernicious shadow of slavery in the 18th century.

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A true masterpiece.

Should be an essential read for everyone living in North America, and England.

Thank you Lawrence Hill,
and Khadijah Roberts-Abdullah

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  • Joshua Browne
  • 2016-10-27

Wonderful and heartbreaking. Beautifully read.

Incredible story, and Ms. Roberts-Abdullah reads with a wonderful understanding of emotion and restraint. Can't recommend it enough.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Bailee
  • 2017-01-26

beautiful story and a beautiful voice to tell it

Beautifully told, beautifully read, it is not a happy story, but a strong wonderful one.

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  • Victoria
  • 2016-11-29

it's good

it was a struggle to Finnish. I just felt it was good but then got boring.

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  • Alanna
  • 2016-10-13

phenomenal

Loved it! this is part of mandatory reading canon for all Canadians. More complete than Alex Haley's Roots anyone interested in the Western World's sordid economic legacy should read this to better understand the sacrifices of African people.

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  • aamna
  • 2016-09-30

awesome

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

yes i would because i feel like we take things for granted, and this book opens our eyes. broadens our prespectives. our problems can be over comed and this book makes it sound like a breeze.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • becca
  • 2016-09-26

powerful

loved this book! easy listen and was anxious to see what woukd unfold next. excellent choice

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  • Adam
  • 2017-02-07

Good story, bad editing

The s sorry and narrating were great, but the editing was not. It felt like this audiobook was edited quickly without listening to the results afterwards.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful