An unlikely friendship is born between Sarah Grimké and her slave, Hetty ‘Handful’ Grimké.
The tale which follows is based surprisingly closely on a true story.
The Grimké sisters were trailblazing abolitionists (and strident feminists), born into the upper echelons of Charleston slave-owning society.
Sue Monk Kidd’s main departure from history is that Handful’s real life counterpart died before she reached adulthood.
If you’re the sort of person who wept buckets during 12 Years a Slave, this one may not be for you.
It made me cry more than once, and there’s a healthy dollop of white guilt in there, as there most certainly should be.
Although I loved it right from the start, there was a lull in the action towards the middle, during which I wasn’t sure where the story was heading. You must push through this. Because afterwards, the story really comes into its own.
A gripping and emotional read, which nimbly toes the line between uplifting and realistic. Quite a feat, when the subject is the US slave trade.