The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat **** (of 4)
Danticat impeccably captures the voices and inner thoughts of Haitian peasants, and first and second generation Haitian immigrants to New York and Florida. Violence lingers in the background of the story as it does in real life in a country ruled by dictators, which makes the book readable, rather than gruesome. There are several literary references to lost sight, deafness, and voices gone silent, reflections, I believe, on Danticat’s view of the Haitian plight. Characters are complicated mixtures of emotions and priorities. I listened to this book narrated by Robin Miles who distinguished half a dozen Haitian accents so effectively that I felt I knew each protagonist personally. The book is understated, rather than a two by four, subtle and complex enough that it should really be read twice or by a book club. May 2006.
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[…] story that feels like an early Danticat work; something from before she really shined in books like The Dew Breaker and Breath, Eyes, Memory (an Oprah book I haven’t read.) In Farming of Bones, […]