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Informative,
Insightful,
Dramatic

1 review

Song Yet Sung
by James McBride

Published: 2008-02-05
Hardcover : 368 pages
2 members reading this now
12 clubs reading this now
1 member has read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 1 of 1 members
From the New York Times-bestselling author of The Color of Water comes a powerful page-turner about a runaway slave and a determined slave catcher.

Nowhere has the drama of American slavery played itself out with more tension than in the dripping swamps of Maryland's eastern shore, where ...
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Introduction

From the New York Times-bestselling author of The Color of Water comes a powerful page-turner about a runaway slave and a determined slave catcher.

Nowhere has the drama of American slavery played itself out with more tension than in the dripping swamps of Maryland's eastern shore, where abolitionists such as Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman, born less than thirty miles apart, faced off against nefarious slave traders in a catch-me-if-you-can game that fueled fear and brought economic hardship to both white and black families. Trapped in the middle were the watermen, a group of America's most original and colorful pioneers, poor oystermen who often found themselves caught between the needs of rich plantation owners and the roaring Chesapeake, which often claimed their lives.

The powerful web of relationships in a small Chesapeake Bay town collapses as two souls face off in a gripping page-turner. Liz Spocott, a young runaway who has odd dreams about the future of the colored race, mistakenly inspires a breakout from the prison attic of a notorious slave thief named Patty Cannon. As Cannon stokes revenge, Liz flees into the nefarious world of the underground railroad with its double meanings and unspoken clues to freedom known to the slaves of Dorchester County as "The Code." Denwood Long, a troubled slave catcher and eastern shore waterman, is coaxed out of retirement to break "The Code" and track down Liz.

Filled with rich history-much of the story is drawn from historical events-and told in McBride's signature lyrical storytelling style, Song Yet Sung brings into full view a world long misunderstood in American fiction: how slavery worked, and the haunting, moral choices that lived beneath the surface, pressing both whites and blacks to search for relief in a world where both seemed to lose their moral compass. This is a story of tragic triumph, violent decisions, and unexpected kindness.

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Discussion Questions

Suggested by Members

Discuss examples of foreshadowing in the book.
Research and discuss a little of the true life of Harriet Tubman
by FTessa (see profile) 11/02/10

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Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
  "Song Yet Sung by James McBride"by FTessa (see profile) 11/02/10

4.5 stars
McBride is best known for his memoir "The Color of Water." Here he turns his talents to an historical novel based on the true story of Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad
... (read more)

 
  "Song Yet Sung"by ssouchak (see profile) 06/24/09

 
  "Song Yet Sung"by tmaurer (see profile) 06/24/09

 
  "The story of slavery in the era of the Civil war, of slaves beginning to flee their captivity, the terrible cost paid by many to do so."by gmaluvsu (see profile) 04/16/09

There is an element of fantasy in this book with the main character who has visions of the future for freed blacks, and how she is misunderstood by her own people as she talks of what will be waiting for... (read more)

 
  "Great read"by Shannon (see profile) 02/09/09

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