Winner of the NBCC's John Leonard First Book Prize
A New York Times 2016 Notable Book
One of Oprah's 10 Favorite Books of 2016
NPR's Debut Novel of the Year
One of Buzzfeed's Best Fiction Books Of 2016
One of Time's Top 10 Novels of 2016
"Homegoing is an inspiration." -Ta-Nehisi Coates
The unforgettable New York Times best seller begins with the story of two half-sisters, separated by forces beyond their control: one sold into slavery, the other married to a British slaver. Written with tremendous sweep and power, Homegoing traces the generations of family who follow, as their destinies lead them through two continents and three hundred years of history, each life indeliably drawn, as the legacy of slavery is fully revealed in light of the present day.
Effia and Esi are born into different villages in eighteenth-century Ghana. Effia is married off to an Englishman and lives in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle. Unbeknownst to Effia, her sister, Esi, is imprisoned beneath her in the castle's dungeons, sold with thousands of others into the Gold Coast's booming slave trade, and shipped off to America, where her children and grandchildren will be raised in slavery. One thread of Homegoing follows Effia's descendants through centuries of warfare in Ghana, as the Fante and Asante nations wrestle with the slave trade and British colonization. The other thread follows Esi and her children into America. From the plantations of the South to the Civil War and the Great Migration, from the coal mines of Pratt City, Alabama, to the jazz clubs and dope houses of twentieth-century Harlem, right up through the present day, Homegoing makes history visceral, and captures, with singular and stunning immediacy, how the memory of captivity came to be inscribed in the soul of a nation.
"Gyasi's characters are so fully realized, so elegantly carved-very often I found myself longing to hear more. Craft is essential given the task Gyasi sets for herself-drawing not just a lineage of two sisters, but two related peoples. Gyasi is deeply concerned with the sin of selling humans on Africans, not Europeans. But she does not scold. She does not excuse. And she does not romanticize. The black Americans she follows are not overly virtuous victims. Sin comes in all forms, from selling people to abandoning children. I think I needed to read a book like this to remember what is possible. I think I needed to remember what happens when you pair a gifted literary mind to an epic task. Homegoing is an inspiration."
-Ta-Nehisi Coates, National Book Award-winning author of Between the World and Me
"Homegoing is a remarkable feat-a novel at once epic and intimate, capturing the moral weight of history as it bears down on individual struggles, hopes, and fears. A tremendous debut."
-Phil Klay, National Book Award-winning author of Redeployment
"I could not put this book down"
"It is hard to overstate how much I LOVE this book"
"One of the most fantastic books I've read in a long time...you cry and you laugh as you're reading it...a beautiful story"
-Trevor Noah, The Daily Show
"The hypnotic debut novel by Yaa Gyasi, a stirringly gifted writer . . . magical . . . the great, aching gift of the novel is that it offers, in its own way, the very thing that enslavement denied its descendants: the possibility of imagining the connection between the broken threads of their origins."
-Isabel Wilkerson, The New York Times Book Review
"It's impossible not to admire the ambition and scope of "Homegoing," and thanks to Ms. Gyasi's instinctive storytelling gifts, the book leaves the reader with a visceral understanding of both the savage realities of slavery and the emotional damage that is handed down, over the centuries, from mothers to daughters, fathers to sons. At its best, the novel makes us experience the horrors of slavery on an intimate, personal level; by its conclusion, the characters' tales of loss and resilience have acquired an inexorable and cumulative emotional weight."
-Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"The brilliance of this structure, in which we know more than the characters do about the fate of their parents and children, pays homage to the vast scope of slavery without losing sight of its private devastation . . . . [Toni Morrison's] influence is palpable in Gyasi's historicity and lyricism; she shares Morrison's uncanny ability to crystalize, in a single event, slavery's moral and emotional fallout. What is uniquely Gyasi's is her ability to connect it so explicitly to the present day: No novel has better illustrated the way in which racism became institutionalized in this country."
-Megan O'Grady, Vogue
"Toni Morrison's masterpiece, "Beloved," seared into our imagination the grotesque distortions of antebellum life. And now, Yaa Gyasi's rich debut novel, "Homegoing," confronts us of the involvement of Africans in the enslavement of their own people . . . the speed with which Gyasi sweeps across the decades isn't confusing so much as dazzling, creating a kind of time-elapsed photo of black lives in America and in the motherland . . . haunting . . . Gyasi has developed a style agile enough to reflect the remarkable range of her first novel. As she moves across the centuries, from old and new Ghana and to pre-Civil War Alabama and modern-day Palo Alto, her prose modulates subtly according to time and setting: The 18th-century chapters resonate with the tones of legend, while the contemporary chapters shine with clear-eyed realism. And somehow all this takes place in the miraculous efficiency of just 300 pages . . . truly captivating."
-Ron Charles, Washington Post
"Gyasi echoes [James] Baldwin's understanding of a common culture marked b
YAA GYASI was born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama. She holds a BA in English from Stanford University and an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, where she held a Dean's Graduate Research Fellowship. She lives in Brooklyn.
Fesselnde Storyline mit Einblick in die Geschichte Afrikas
von einer Kundin/einem Kunden am 19.06.2019
Bewertet: Einband: Taschenbuch
Die fiktive Story ist sehr spannend gegliedert und nimmt den Leser mit auf eine historische Reise durch das sich entwickelnde Afrika. Die Protagonisten sind komplexe Charaktere und jeder einzelne steht für eine Epoche bzw. einen Zeitpunkt in der Entwicklung Afrikas. Die Autorin schildert ebenfalls das Leben von (nicht nur) junge...
Die fiktive Story ist sehr spannend gegliedert und nimmt den Leser mit auf eine historische Reise durch das sich entwickelnde Afrika. Die Protagonisten sind komplexe Charaktere und jeder einzelne steht für eine Epoche bzw. einen Zeitpunkt in der Entwicklung Afrikas. Die Autorin schildert ebenfalls das Leben von (nicht nur) jungen Menschen, welche mit zwei Kulturen aufwachsen und persönliche Hürden, die auf dieser Fusion von Werten und Kulturen und dem sich ständig weiterentwickelndem Umfeld basieren, überwinden müssen.
Ein spannendes Buch, welches aufklärt und gleichzeitig einen Denkanstoß gibt und obwohl es größtenteils die Vergangenheit thematisiert auch einen Bezug zur Gegenwart schafft.
von miss.mesmerized am 13.12.2016
Bewertet: gebundene Ausgabe
Across the centuries and across the Atlantic Ocean stretches the story of Effia and Esi. Born at the end of the 18th century in the former British colony which now is Ghana, their lives develop completely different and we follow the line of the blood. From rivalling tribes in Africa, over slavery, from basic schooling in mission...
Across the centuries and across the Atlantic Ocean stretches the story of Effia and Esi. Born at the end of the 18th century in the former British colony which now is Ghana, their lives develop completely different and we follow the line of the blood. From rivalling tribes in Africa, over slavery, from basic schooling in missionary schools to higher education, from the African jungle to the jungle of the modern metropolis: We see the legacy that the two sisters have given with their blood, how generations later their story is not forgotten and how even across centuries and borders the struggles for a self-determined and independent life is fought yet, often without success. Maybe there is something as a curse that can be engraved in a family.
The story starts at a rather slow pace when we are presented the story in Ghana more than two hundred years ago. We get an idea of the living conditions and especially of the structure of an African village. What I found most interesting about this part of the story was the role that women had in the community, especially how different wives could share a husband and find a somehow acceptable arrangement with the situation. Additionally, the fights between the tribes were fascinating since this something which is completely different from our European history. The colonialization part shed another light on Africa the struggle between the indigenous population and the British coloniser. Here, the religious aspects were most intriguing. There is another aspect which always looms over the story: to what extent is the belief in evil a kind of self-fulfilling prophecy? In America, we rush from the slaves of the southern states over the times of the Civil Rights Movement to our days where still the colour of your skin is a decisive factor.
Yaa Gyasis novel is full of singular topics which cannot all be addressed in a short review. The most striking feature is how she manages to follow the line of the two families over the time and how they recall their ancestors and things connected to them. There is some kind of family remembrance which is really touching. All in all, a wonderful, with words colourfully depicted novel which gives you a lot of food for thought particularly about Africa and how the peoples perception there might differ from ours.