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Growing up in the Deep South during the years leading to the Civil War, two young girls find freedom on a hillside overlooking Westland, an Alabama plantation. Essie Mae, an intuitive, intelligent slave girl, and Evie Winthrop, the sheltered, imaginative dreamer and planter's daughter, strike up a secret friendship that thrives amidst the shadows of abuse.
Told from the viewpoint of four women: Katherine Winthrop, kind mistress and unexpected heiress to her father's small, cotton plantation; Delly, her sassy and beloved house slave; Essie Mae, her slave girl; and Evie Winthrop, Katherine's only child, Essie's Roses tells of forbidden relationships flourishing in secret behind Westland's protective trees and treasured roses.
After scandal befalls Westland, Evie and Essie, aged nineteen, travel to Richmond, Virginia, to escape their abusive pasts. There, they face the gross indecencies and divisions leading to the War Between the States. Though the horrors of slavery and discrimination prompt action, Evie and Essie's struggles lie within. The secrets they hold and the pain of the past lead them away from one another and back home again.
A story about a black slave who frees a white woman, Essie's Roses reveals the innocence of children's friendships, the diverse meanings of freedom, the significance of a dream, and the power of love. In their efforts to save each other, will the women of Westland find the true freedom they desire?
As the two girls grow to young adulthood, the world around them darkens and agitates more and more toward the triggering events of the American Civil War, and when the two travel to Richmond, Virginia, on the eve of war, they are exposed to the worst depravities of a depraved society. Their friendship is tested in several very dramatic ways.
Muriel does an extremely confident job of moving her complex, multi-part novel forward. Her characters are vividly drawn, and the many period details - social, linguistic, and even literary - with which she fleshes out her story never feel forced or melodramatic.
Fans of both Gone with the Wind and Geraldine Brooks' March will find Essie's Roses a richly moving reading experience. -Historical Novel Society
- ">19th Century Historical Fiction - General & Miscellaneous
- ">Civil War (U.S.A.) - Historical Fiction
- ">Slavery - Fiction
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Lauren TowersApr 3, 2015 - We dipped our feet in water with rose petals, and rubbed lotion with oatmeal and maple, and ">Historical Romance - Other. Khloe chose a teal called Token to Turks from Essie, and I chose a lavender called. My guide of EBTs is ready for you guys to download!. Hoping this ebook will do well enough that I can make a second one!
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