Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez is startling and original fiction that raises provocative questions of power and freedom, love and dependence. An enchanting and unforgettable novel based on little-known fact, Wench combines the narrative allure of Cane River by Lalita Tademy and the moral complexities of Edward P. Jones’s The Known World as it tells the story of four black enslaved women in the years preceding the Civil War. A stunning debut novel, Wench marks author Perkins-Valdez—previously a finalist for the 2009 Robert Olen Butler Short Fiction Prize—as a writer destined for greatness.
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An ambitious and startling debut novel that follows the lives of four women at a resort popular among slaveholders who bring their enslaved mistresses
wench \'wench\ n. from Middle English "wenchel," 1 a: a girl, maid, young woman; a female child.
Tawawa House in many respects is like any other American resort before the Civil War. Situated in Ohio, this idyllic retreat is particularly nice in the summer when the Southern humidity is too much to bear. The main building, with its luxurious finishes, is loftier than the white cottages that flank it, but then again, the smaller structures are better positioned to catch any breeze that may come off the pond. And they provide more privacy, which best suits the needs of the Southern white men who vacation there every summer with their black, enslaved mistresses. It's their open secret.
Lizzie, Reenie, and Sweet are regulars at Tawawa House. They have become friends over the years as they reunite and share developments in their own lives and on their respective plantations. They don't bother too much with questions of freedom, though the resort is situated in free territory–but when truth-telling Mawu comes to the resort and starts talking of running away, things change.
To run is to leave behind everything these women value most–friends and families still down South–and for some it also means escaping from the emotional and psychological bonds that bind them to their masters. When a fire on the resort sets off a string of tragedies, the women of Tawawa House soon learn that triumph and dehumanization are inseparable and that love exists even in the most inhuman, brutal of circumstances–all while they are bearing witness to the end of an era.
An engaging, page-turning, and wholly original novel, Wench explores, with an unflinching eye, the moral complexities of slavery.About the Author:
Dolen Perkins-Valdez is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel Wench. USA Today called the book “deeply moving” and “beautifully written.” Peoplecalled it “a devastatingly beautiful account of a cruel past.” O, The Oprah Magazine chose it as a Top Ten Pick of the Month, and NPR named it a top 5 book club pick of 2010. Dolen’s fiction has appeared in The Kenyon Review, StoryQuarterly, StorySouth, and elsewhere. In 2011, she was a finalist for two NAACP Image Awards and the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for fiction. She was also awarded the First Novelist Award by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and has received a DC Commission on the Arts Grant. Dolen teaches in the Stonecoast MFA program. A graduate of Harvard and a former University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow at UCLA, Dolen lives in Washington, DC with her family.
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Book Description Book Condition: New. Gift Quality Book in Excellent Condition. Bookseller Inventory # 36SE5E000ILT
Book Description Amistad, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 006170654X
Book Description Amistad, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P11006170654X
Book Description Amistad/HarperCollins, New York, N.Y. U.S.A., 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New [Mylar protected]. First Edition [Stated]. 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. [290 pp] . FIRST EDITION HARDCOVER - NEW in NEW Mylar-protected DJ. Author's first novel. Flawless. GIFT QUALITY COLLECTIBLE. Bookseller Inventory # 05894
Book Description Amistad Pr, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: Brand New. first edition edition. 304 pages. 9.00x6.00x1.00 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk006170654X