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  • Published: Boston, MA : Beacon Press, 1979.
  • Year Published: 1979
  • Description: 287 p.
  • Language: English
  • Format: Book

Reading Level

  • Lexile: 580

ISBN/Standard Number

  • 0807083690 (softcover)
  • 0807083054 :
  • 0385150598 :

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by Butler, Octavia E.

There are no copies available and 2 requests on 2 copies

Where To Find It

Call number: Science Fiction

Community Reviews


There aren't many sci fi books that feature people of color, so I'm glad that I found this book and picked it up. I also haven't read any science fiction books that jumped into slave territory. As in, the main character from a current time goes back in time...to slavery. Now, I know that would suck. And as this book portrayed, slaverydoes actually suck. I was engaged throughout the entire book, and it was thrilling and suspenseful enough to the point where I finished it in a weekend even with my busy schedule. It definitely has interesting premise with a plot that is unusual and maybe a bit uncomfortable and inconvenient for certain readers. But Octavia Butler is an author that chooses to boldly step forward into a time period that is often talked about but yet forgotten. The book is a reminder that the past should not be forgotten no matter how long ago it was because it still affects the present. I do have to admit that the ending is a bit strange, though inventive. Though it is strange, it's not surprising since it's science fiction and in the science fiction world, anything can happen. I wouldn't openly recommend this book to anyone because of the subject matter, but if you want a taste in a different kind of science fiction, experience a life that you would never experience, or just read for the thrill of it, I would lay this book down on the table in front of you. It's not a hard read, and it's not a slow read either, so why not pick up a small book and read it if not for any other reason?

Interesting read....

When you read a lot of books, you really do find out that they're really all the same 5-10 stories told in different ways. It's the job of the author to make you think his way is the best: the most innovative, the most poetic, the most thrilling, the most heart pulling. Octavia Butler has definitely put a new spin on an old tale. Here the slave novella meets science fiction. And I can't say I know many authors are brave enough to tread such peculiar territory. To her credit, Ms. Butler does keep her reader engaged but sometimes it's only because the reader is hoping the absurdity will make some sense along the way. Inconsistent in prose and not particularly lyrical, this book won't do much to quench a thirst for the poetic. But the story does drive in action from start to bizarre finish. It's a fun summer read and brings some interesting history to light but not one I couldn't live without.

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