The Water Dancer
A NovelLarge Print - 2019
"This potent book about America's most disgraceful sin establishes [Ta-Nehisi Coates] as a first-rate novelist."-- San Francisco Chronicle
IN DEVELOPMENT AS A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE * Adapted by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Kamilah Forbes, produced by MGM, Plan B, and Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Films
NOMINATED FOR THE NAACP IMAGE AWARD * NAMED ONE OF PASTE 'S BEST NOVELS OF THE DECADE * NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Time * NPR * The Washington Post * Chicago Tribune * Vanity Fair * Esquire * Good Housekeeping * Paste * Town & Country * The New York Public Library * Kirkus Reviews * Library Journal
Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage. When his mother was sold away, Hiram was robbed of all memory of her--but was gifted with a mysterious power. Years later, when Hiram almost drowns in a river, that same power saves his life. This brush with death births an urgency in Hiram and a daring scheme: to escape from the only home he's ever known.
So begins an unexpected journey that takes Hiram from the corrupt grandeur of Virginia's proud plantations to desperate guerrilla cells in the wilderness, from the coffin of the Deep South to dangerously idealistic movements in the North. Even as he's enlisted in the underground war between slavers and the enslaved, Hiram's resolve to rescue the family he left behind endures.
This is the dramatic story of an atrocity inflicted on generations of women, men, and children--the violent and capricious separation of families--and the war they waged to simply make lives with the people they loved. Written by one of today's most exciting thinkers and writers, The Water Dancer is a propulsive, transcendent work that restores the humanity of those from whom everything was stolen.
Praise for The Water Dancer
"Ta-Nehisi Coates is the most important essayist in a generation and a writer who changed the national political conversation about race with his 2015 memoir, Between the World and Me . So naturally his debut novel comes with slightly unrealistic expectations--and then proceeds to exceed them. The Water Dancer . . . is a work of both staggering imagination and rich historical significance. . . . What's most powerful is the way Coates enlists his notions of the fantastic, as well as his fluid prose, to probe a wound that never seems to heal. . . . Timeless and instantly canon-worthy." -- Rolling Stone
From Library Staff
LPL_ShirleyB Sep 14, 2020
Read an immersive tale to celebrate the Underground Railroad.
Ta-Nehisi Coates’s first work of fiction is as beautiful and wise as his essays!
LPL_ShirleyB Sep 17, 2020
Recommended by Shirley
LPL_ReadersServices Sep 07, 2020
"From the National Book Award-winning author of Between the World and Me, a boldly conjured debut novel about a magical gift, a devastating loss, and an underground war for freedom."
LPL_LeahN Jul 13, 2020
"The jump is done by the power of the story. It pulls from our particular histories, from all of our loves and all of our losses, all of that feeling is called up and on the strength of our remembrances, we are moved." This is Conduction.
This book is purely and simply a revelation. T... Read More »
With water and memory, Hiram Walker becomes a powerful Underground Railroad conductor. This is Coats fiction debut, influenced by Toni Morrison and E.L. Doctorow. Awarded the Audie Award for Literary Fiction & Classics, Published in September 2019
From the critics
QuotesAdd a Quote
'Way I see it, ain't no pure and it is we who are blessed, for we know this.'
'Blessed, for we do not bear the weight of pretending pure[...]I would live down here among my losses, among the muck and mess of it, before I would ever live among those who are in their own kind of muck but are so blinded by it they fancy it pure. Ain't no pure[...]Ain't no clean.'" (293)
“Bored whites were barbarian whites. While they played at aristocrats, we were their well-appointed and stoic attendants. But when they tired of dignity, the bottom fell out. New games were anointed and we were but pieces on the board. It was terrifying. There was no limit to what they might do at this end of the tether, nor what my father [the white Master of the plantation] would allow them to do.”
AgeAdd Age Suitability
There are no ages for this title yet.
SummaryAdd a Summary
There are no summaries for this title yet.
There are no notices for this title yet.