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One Day's Tale: A Novel

Lois Barliant

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ISBN 10: 0986245100 / ISBN 13: 9780986245107
Published by Austin Lamp Press, 2016
Condition: Good Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: One Day's Tale: A Novel

Publisher: Austin Lamp Press

Publication Date: 2016

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition: Good

About this title


Betsy Randall and her family set out from 18th Century England for her  late brother's plantation in Colonial Virginia, but she alone survives  the voyage to a land of Europeans, Africans, and Indians becoming a  nation.
She disembarks in a port where Africans on a slave ship are  brutalized and sold to the highest bidder. Accustomed to a life ruled by  men, she realizes that she is now the owner of the plantation and the  people who live and work there, and that their fate is in her hands  alone. On her journey to claim her inheritance, she encounters the  kindness and treachery of colonials; the bravery and violence of  frontiersmen, soldiers, bandits and Indians; the beauty and danger of  untamed wilderness; the cruelty of slavery, and the unpredictable  intimacy between slave and master. She arrives at the plantation, named  Good Hope, to discover family she had not imagined. It is then, at the  end of the journey, that she finds self-realization and autonomy.

From the Author:

A nightmare about pirates terrorizing a colonialfamily triggered the writing of One Day's Tale, anovel about Betsy Randall, a naïve young English woman who sails to Virginia inthe early 18th century. The narrativebegins with the pirates, but while writing of the assault onBetsy by the British officer who rescued her, I was jarred by therealization that the war in Iraq had spurredthe original nightmare in 2003. Suddenly, my illusion of writing about the pastwas shattered, and the writing became about contemporary struggles againstviolence, oppression, racism, and the suppression of women. The pirates'ruthless murders reflect all too much of the contemporary world. The horror ofthe African slave trade and the inhumanity of the treatment of black people, evenwhen they lived intimately with their masters in elegant homes, foreshadow thecontinuing struggle with racism. Betsy's dread of the peoples whose landcolonials claimed parallels current fears of terrorists. And her reluctant submissionto the norms of male supremacy echoes the plight of women today. 
Nevertheless, history comforts with itsonce-upon-a-time, and travels to Colonial Williamsburg in every season of theyear both taught and entertained me, turning research into recreation: boardingwind-powered ships like those that had sailed the Atlantic at the turn of the18th century; conversations with sailors andhistorians; visits to the Google domain; studying books on sailing, ships, andlife at sea for migrants, sailors, and pirates; and reading numerous slavenarratives, accounts of planters' lives and journals of expeditions describingthe flora and fauna of the Virginia wilderness. The twelve years dedicated toBetsy's adventure have been well spent. 
The writing of One Day's Tale was also informed by my experiences as a tutor atthe Tuskegee Institute Summer Education Program, and teaching at CuttingtonCollege in Liberia for two years, all long before I began my journey in Betsy's company.  

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