Penny Mickelbury

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Bywater Books img Link Publisher

Belletristik / Gegenwartsliteratur (ab 1945)


Award-winning author Penny Mickelbury takes readers on a beautiful and complicated journey through Harlem in 1953. This captivating story is passionate and alive, teeming with the contradictory joy and pain of Black life in America.

World War II ended less than 10 years ago, and the Korean War less than one. But no one has recovered from wartime privations, especially the Colored soldiers who fought a ruthless enemy on foreign lands, expecting to return home with all the rights and privileges of American citizenship.

But those rights and privileges remain few and far between, and Mickelbury’s cast of characters find themselves reflecting on the Harlem they call home: they are educated and unschooled; wealthy and desperately poor; committed to improving circumstances for Negroes and abjectly hopeless. They create a family of and for themselves—women, men, children, gays, and the proudly self-named. They commit themselves to helping create a world to benefit their people based on hard work, artistic expression, and faith in their community.

They have learned to live in the larger world by two guiding principles: Each One Teaches One, and Harm to One is Harm to All—because in this neighborhood, payback will always be swift and painful.

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lesbian, Colored, revenge, Black, wlw, sapphic, Harlem, 1950s, Negro, civil rights, community