Emancipation Day

Emancipation Day

A Novel

Book - 2013
Average Rating:
3
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With his curly black hair and his wicked grin, everyone swoons and thinks of Frank Sinatra when Navy musician Jackson Lewis takes the stage. It's World War II, and while stationed in St. John's, Newfoundland, Jack meets the well-heeled, romantic Vivian Clift. But when Vivian meets Jack's mother and brother, everything she thought she knew about her new husband gets called into question. They don't live in the dream home that Jack depicted, they all look different from one another - and different from anyone Vivian has ever seen - and after weeks of waiting to meet Jack's father, William Henry, he never materializes. Told from three perspectives, white, black, and mixed - Vivian, William Henry, and Jack - this is a novel that challenges our notion of racial history in Canada and explores the cost of denial and prejudice on generation after generation.
Publisher: Toronto :, Doubleday Canada,, [2013].
Copyright Date: ©2013
ISBN: 9780385677660
Characteristics: 330 pages ;,23 cm.

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podgorskis
Nov 08, 2015

This novel is both entertaining and compelling. It explores the rich complexities of racism through the story of a mixed race child growing up in Windsor, out to Newfoundland during the war, then back to Toronto and Windsor. Characters are richly developed, filled with conflicted misgivings over racial identity. The tension in the story builds like an elastic pulled tighter and tighter, right to the very last line. A great read.

b
blolo
Jan 28, 2015

I really did not enjoy this book. My biggest issue with it was that the characters were “thinly” developed and didn’t seem like believable people.

inthestacks Feb 25, 2014

Jack Lewis, a young Navy musician stationed in Newfoundland at the end of the Second World War, meets and marries Vivian, a naïve, local girl. They travel to Windsor, Ontario, where Vivian discovers, in meeting Jack’s family, that he is black but has been passing for white since an early age. Vivian struggles to accept this and to find acceptance with Jack’s family. Too many plot holes and some awkwardly-written passages make for a weak story overall. Hard to believe this was long-listed for the 2013 Giller Prize.

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