Thursday, March 24, 2011

Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez *Review*

Four slave women meet up every year at a resort called Tawawa House. Brought as mistresses by their slave masters, these ladies share a special bond. Not only are they faced with the same circumstance, but they finally have someone they can talk to who understands the different role they play in the lives of their masters.

More privileged than the field slaves and more special than the other house slaves, the mistresses are resented not only by their master's wife, but by some fo the other slaves as well. Their children, being part white are not accepted by the other slave children, and not quite accepted by their own father's as well.

Wench is the story of Lizzie, Sweet, Reenie and Tawu who spend 3 months each year sharing their hopes and their dreams for the future. The dream of one day being free. The dream of their children not having to suffer the same indignities they have. The dream of never having to suffer at the hands of their masters again. But just how far are they willing to go to make their dreams come true? And what will happen if they try?

Wench is a uniquely different angle to the slave sagas I had read in the past. It is one that was seldom written about or talked about but most certainly existed. It is a story that touched me deeply as I read about each character's tragic and confining life.

The book club that I am in reviewed this in March and I think most of the women were pleasantly surprised by the book. To see another review, and to see how our book club puts a fun spin on the books we review go to my friend Sheila's website Book Journey. The club's overall rating was a 4, my rating 4/5 stars.