Sunday, January 20, 2013

All Different Kinds of Free - Jessica McCann

**spoiler alert to my first Monday's reading group**

In 1837, a free black woman in Pennsylvania and her children were kidnapped by a bounty hunter and taken to Maryland.  She and the state of Pennsylvania sued in a case that reached the United States Supreme Court and launched a disagreement on state's rights that contributed to the start of the Civil War.

This book takes the historical facts and weaves a fictional story of what Margaret Morgan's life may have been like before and after the kidnapping.  Its a fascinating account of life before the civil war in both Pennsylvania (my home state) and Maryland as well as the state of the nation.

I found myself rushing through the chapters to see how her life would turn out, knowing from the beginning that even the fictional account would be heartbreaking.  Being separated from your children like cattle is hard to grasp over 175 years later.  The treatment of women of all color was marginally better than that of the slaves.  

I read this for one of my reading groups and look forward to our discussion on it.

Published: 2011  Read: January 2013   Genre: Historical fiction
Winner Freedom in Fiction Prize

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