Monday, July 18, 2011

Roots by Alex Haley. Week #5 of the summer Read-A-Long

Roots by Alex Haley.
Read-A-Long Week #5

Pages Read:  402-500
Chapters Read: 64-77

Note:  I am reading ROOTS in honor of my former student Quincy Blue who was recently found murdered, his body burned beyond recognition, in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

OMG, where has the summer gone?  I am already halfway through this 900 page edition of Roots and am loving this book.  It is very hard for me to stop reading every week.   For me, the book is highly readable and entertaining and I can't wait to see what happens to Kunta Kinte. 

This week Kunta gets married to Bell.  It is the first time he has ever held or been with a woman and he is almost 40 years old.  Kunta and Bell are from two different worlds, his African and hers Slavery.  Many times they don't understand each other's differences and argue or worse, quit talking to each other.  Their love is unique as they discover and learn about each other.  Bell can read and write and Kunta can write Arabic and speak Mandinka.  Bell has reminded Kunta that he cannot be African anymore and must forget those days but he cannot.

Kunta and Bell have a baby girl.  Kunta names her in the traditional way by whispering her name in her ear and they call her Kizzy.  Kizzy is the apple of Kunte's eye yet it frustrates him that he has no control over her destiny.  He doesn't want her to become a white child's play thing but that is just what she becomes.  Missy Anne is the Massa's niece and she adores Kizzy and as they grow up, much to Kunta's chagrin, they become inseparable. Both parents worry about the fate of their daughter as she grows up in a hostile world.

As Bell reads the newspaper she learns that in Haiti, the sugar cane slaves are treated to horrible atrocities and revolt against there white owners and overseers.  Toussaint L'Ouverture rises up and leads the slaves to fight against the English, declares their Independence and wins it and then he has to fight the French who are vying for control of the sugar market.  The book hasn't talked about this yet but Toussaint will defeat Napoleon in 1804 and become known as the black Napoleon.  Toussaint is Kunta's hero and he eagerly awaits news of Haiti. 

Slaves are revolting in Virginia as well and the whites are scared. 
The year is 1800
Kunta is now 50 years old and his daughter Kizzy is 9 (I think)
Location:  Virginia

These are the bloggers/readers participating in the Read-A-Long.  Please visit them and comment.  Also if you are participating and want to be included on this list, please comment and I will add a link to your blog.
Thanks everyone for participating.

1.  Bre from Booksnob Wannabe
2.  Sherrie from Just Books
3.  Michelle from Truebookaddict
4.  Laurie from Whatsheread

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