A Mercy

Front Cover
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Nov 11, 2008 - Fiction - 208 pages
32 Reviews

National Bestseller

One of The New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year

In the 1680s the slave trade in the Americas is still in its infancy. Jacob Vaark is an Anglo-Dutch trader and adventurer, with a small holding in the harsh North. Despite his distaste for dealing in “flesh,” he takes a small slave girl in part payment for a bad debt from a plantation owner in Catholic Maryland. This is Florens, who can read and write and might be useful on his farm. Rejected by her mother, Florens looks for love, first from Lina, an older servant woman at her new master's house, and later from the handsome blacksmith, an African, never enslaved, who comes riding into their lives.

A Mercy reveals what lies beneath the surface of slavery. But at its heart, like Beloved, it is the ambivalent, disturbing story of a mother and a daughter—a mother who casts off her daughter in order to save her, and a daughter who may never exorcise that abandonment.




From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
7
4 stars
22
3 stars
2
2 stars
1
1 star
0

Review: A Mercy

User Review  - Marion - Goodreads

I actually loved the narration style here. The different voices, the different perspectives, the many raw moments. A thought that accompanied me on almost every page was, "But was there no joy at the ... Read full review

Review: A Mercy

User Review  - Jamilla Rice - Goodreads

Hmmm. She seems to be evolving in style with each book. I like how the perspective switches, like in Paradise, slowly developing the story, until the end. It's going to be difficult for some readers ... Read full review

All 23 reviews »

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
9
Section 3
36
Section 4
43
Section 5
67
Section 6
72
Section 7
101
Section 8
116
Section 9
135
Section 10
143
Section 11
157
Section 12
162
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2008)

Toni Morrison is the Robert F. Goheen Professor of Humanities, Emerita, at Princeton University. She has received the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize. In 1993 she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. She lives in Rockland County, New York, and Princeton, New Jersey.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Bibliographic information