Love and Freedom (Book Club)
Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez is the story of four female slaves who forge friendships at an annual retreat. The retreat is located in the free state of Ohio before the Civil War, where their Southern masters take the women whom they also claim as mistresses. As wives are left at home, the men can each occupy a cabin with their favored slaves for a week of privacy. The idea of escaping into the woods of this free state is a great temptation for the slaves, yet only one has no inclination to even think about such a plan—Lizzie. The book centers on the love between Lizzie and her master—a strong bond that draws pure loyalty from the devoted and trusting slave. Is that loyalty deserved? Will it keep her from running?
Despite the dire subject matter, my book club thought this was an interesting and worthwhile book. A look into Lizzie's relationship with her master revealed a compelling, as well as sad and complicated, story.
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