Saturday, May 19, 2012

Clarabelle's Rose by Judy Kashi

Clarabelle's RoseA brutal tale. Very brutal...about how bigotry and racism destroys lives and families...about what it's like to be raised in it, to face it, to fight it.

The main players:

Clarabelle is at first a snotty white trash chick. The more you read about her background though, the more you can see why. She's raised to be one. She's beaten on a daily basis for anything and everything, foul words and language is just ingrained into her, racism and hatred... Her father is a klansman. Her only escape--she thinks--is her boyfriend. He's a prick who is just using her till he joins the Army. (I didn't care for him appearing later in the book. Though, it ties in with the people can change theme.)

Sara is an African American woman whose husband was lynched by Clarabelle's father. She struggles with grief and making a new life for her and her daughters in a world that hates her due to her skin color. She rises above but later in the story, when the truth about her Clarabelle is revealed, she hates too.

Rose is Clarabelle's daughter and the result of a rape. She's half black/half white. Sometimes she hates white people, sometimes she want to paint herself so she can be like them and life will be easy...

There's a kind Jewish family, a man grappling with his faith, a lawyer who breaks the law for justic... Readers literally see it from all sides. No end to the heartbreak. Even the ending contained brutality. But the story shows that people change and you CAN rise above your beginnings and you DON'T have to hate like you may have been taught.

I'd recommend it, but there was quite a few editorial issues such as missing commas, misspelled words, and odd sentences that made me do a double take. With another solid round of editing, it would be great. It was a brutal but extremely engaging story that sucked me in.

Four bikes. I received this from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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