Jennifer Reese
November 02, 2007 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Someone Knows My Name

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Lawrence Hill
publisher
W.W. Norton
genre
History, Fiction

We gave it an A-

Aminata Diallo, the narrator of Lawrence Hill’s transporting historical novel Someone Knows My Name, is nabbed from her African village by slave traders when she’s 11. Shipped to South Carolina, she works on an indigo plantation, bears and loses a child, escapes to freedom in Nova Scotia, returns to Africa, moves to London, and becomes involved in the abolitionist movement. That’s an impressive CV for a ”little bitty pint-sized fast-talking African woman,” but Hill makes Aminata such a terrific character, you believe she could have pulled it off. And through her curious eyes, a terrifying patch of history comes to vivid life. A-

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