Alex Haley's Queen: The Story of an American Family

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HarperCollins Publishers, Jan 1, 1993 - African Americans - 800 pages
27 Reviews
Once in every generation, there is a landmark book that adds a new richness to all our lives. For millions of people of all colors, that book was Alex Haley's Roots. Roots was an instant success, winning a Pulitzer Prize and spawning the most-watched miniseries in television history. Alex Haley's legacy has had as great an impact on American families as any story in the twentieth century. Now, from the author of Roots, comes Alex Haley's Queen - the saga of his father's family. Lovers of sweeping generational epics will find much to rejoice in here. Once again, this is a personal saga, but one played out against the broad canvas of American history. The story begins in Ireland, where Haley's white great-great-grandfather, James Jackson, Sr., is born. From there we travel with Jackson to Nashville, where he meets Andrew Jackson, the future president of the United States. The two men become business partners, and James Jackson makes his fortune. He establishes his grand plantation, The Forks of Cypress, in Alabama, while Andrew ascends to the White House, and the rumblings that will explode into the Civil War gather force. James's son Jass Jackson inherits the plantation just as the genteel, well-ordered antebellum world begins to crumble. His adolescent attraction to the beautiful and strongwilled slave named Easter blossoms into a powerful and lasting love, and from their passionate union comes Queen - the heroine of the tale, Alex Haley's grandmother. This is history at its most compelling - from the Irish sod to the settlement of the South; from the Trail of Tears to the battlefield at Manassas; from the agonies of slavery to the tribulations of freedom - all rendered with the eye fortelling detail and the sense of historical significance that readers have come to expect of Haley. In this, his final book, Alex Haley has created a truly multicultural family saga, the capstone to one of the great, classic American stories. The television miniseries of Alex Hal

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The depth of character development was splendid. - Goodreads
There is no doubt that Haley was a great writer. - Goodreads
Alex Haley's "Roots" writing continues with "Queen". - Goodreads

Review: Queen

User Review  - Ardonna Ward - Goodreads

It's a great story of how a biracial child of a slave mother and plantation owner father grew up and navigated the cruel and unjust worlds that she felt she didn't belong in. Read full review

Review: Queen

User Review  - Joy Williamson - Goodreads

This is a big book, but if you liked Roots you will find this a good followup. It's very graphic in spots but this is true history as shameful as it is. A good resource for some of the lesser known facts about politics during the Civil War era. Fictional liberties taken but much truth as well. Read full review

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About the author (1993)

Alex Haley's full name was Alexander Palmer Haley. He was born in Ithaca, N.Y. in 1921, and grew up in Henning, Tenn. Educated at Elizabeth City Teacher's College in North Carolina, Haley became a journalist while serving in the United States Coast Guard from 1939 to 1959. After retiring from the service, Haley moved to Los Angeles, finding fulltime employment as a freelance writer. First known for his work as co-author and editor of the highly regarded Autobiography of Malcolm X, Haley's biggest success stemmed from his Pulitzer Prize-winning book, 'Roots: The Saga of an American Family.' Extensively researched and based in part on Haley's own African roots, the work became a national bestseller and, in addition to the Pulitzer, won the Springarn Medal in 1977. Roots was also adapted into one of the first television miniseries and garnered some of the highest ratings in television history. His next book, "Queen", told the story of Queen Haley, Alex Haley's paternal grandmother. He died before this work was completed and it was finished by David Stevens. This was also adapted for television. Another work, "Mama Flora's Family" compiled from Haley's unpublished writings, continues the family saga and was published in 1998. Alex Haley died in 1992 in Seattle, Washington. He was 71 years old.

David Stevens is the winner of eleven Chelsea Flower Show gold medals. He has hosted two popular garden design series on television and is the author of many successful gardening books. He lives in England.

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