The Twelve Tribes of Hattie
The newest Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection The arrival of a major new voice in contemporary fiction. A debut of extraordinary distinction: Ayana Mathis tells the story of the children of the Great Migration through the trials of one unforgettable family. In 1923, fifteen-year-old Hattie Shepherd... show more
The newest Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection The arrival of a major new voice in contemporary fiction. A debut of extraordinary distinction: Ayana Mathis tells the story of the children of the Great Migration through the trials of one unforgettable family. In 1923, fifteen-year-old Hattie Shepherd flees Georgia and settles in Philadelphia, hoping for a chance at a better life. Instead, she marries a man who will bring her nothing but disappointment and watches helplessly as her firstborn twins succumb to an illness a few pennies could have prevented. Hattie gives birth to nine more children whom she raises with grit and mettle and not an ounce of the tenderness they crave. She vows to prepare them for the calamitous difficulty they are sure to face in their later lives, to meet a world that will not love them, a world that will not be kind. Captured here in twelve luminous narrative threads, their lives tell the story of a mother’s monumental courage and the journey of a nation. Beautiful and devastating, Ayana Mathis’s The Twelve Tribes of Hattie is wondrous from first to last—glorious, harrowing, unexpectedly uplifting, and blazing with life. An emotionally transfixing page-turner, a searing portrait of striving in the face of insurmountable adversity, an indelible encounter with the resilience of the human spirit and the driving force of the American dream. Ayana Mathis is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and is a recipient of the Michener-Copernicus Fellowship. The Twelve Tribes of Hattie is her first novel.
Publish date: December 6th 2012
Pages no: 256
Edition language: English
, Book Club
, Adult Fiction
, Historical Fiction
, Literary Fiction
, African American
Following the story of Hattie and her 11 kids from different POVs, this book provides a good example of 'what it means to be black in America' without victimism. Here, African Americans are not goody two shoes, perfect examples of human beings who turn to be just tokens/objects/plot devices to showc...
This struck me as a collection of well written essays on life in Philadelphia (and to a lesser extent, Georgia), post 1925, when 17 year-old Hattie moves north with her mother and sisters. Immediately the difference between living as a Black in The North, against staying in The South, is apparent to...
"Of course Im angry!" She looked at Bell as though she'd have liked to shake her by the shoulders. "I probably always will be. But I've been mad all my life, and I finally figured out that I couldn't keep carrying that with me. Its too heavy and Im too tired. Time will take care of it, like it d...
I thought each of Hattie's "tribes" had their own unique viewpoint and manner of speaking, which I think is hard for an author to do well.Really liked some of her prose; even highlighted one..."She had been with her share of schemers and men who were forever building castles in the sky. All of those...
This book is divided into sections representing Hattie's progeny. The first chapter takes place in 1925 and the last in 1980, so a lot of time is covered. The format shares a lot with the "short story" format, though there is enough continuity for it to be called a novel. While I was reading it, I w...