• Book

The known world

by Jones, Edward P.

There are currently 6 available

Where To Find It

Call number: Fiction

Available Copies: Downtown 1st Floor, Malletts Adult, Pittsfield Adult

Reviews & Summaries

Community Reviews

Slavery and Freed Black People in VA

Fascinating historic fiction, set mostly in the decade before the Civil War in a rural part of Virginia. The vignettes in the book all revolve around a group of Black freedmen (and women), the slaves they own, and their white neighbors and their slaves.

The writing is beautiful - elegant and moving, and it really pulls you into that "Known World" - a pretty socially and geographically circumscribed area. Bang on for "sense of place", in other words.

For me, it was hard to get into the story at first because it was disjointed in time - it jumps from a character's childhood, to his funeral, to his manumission - and there were so many characters. But about halfway through, it became terribly compelling. Big thumbs up, I think it deserved the Pulitzer Prize, AND it was beautiful, shocking, moving, and all that.

Difficult, but important book...

This book is beautifully written, and incredibly complex. It dealt with aspects of slavery that I had not anticipated and that were deeply unsettling. Because of its moral complexities, I found this to be a difficult book to love. But I am glad that I read it. Edward P. Jones is truly a gifted writer.

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