What It Is About: This isn't an easy book to summarize. The story follows Cora is a young slave girl living on a cotton plantation in Georgia. She doesn't fit in with the slave owners and/or the other slaves. She lives her life on her own and tries to make the best of a difficult situation. Caesar, another slave from Virginia, arrives and tells Cora about the "underground railroad". The difference with the well-known railroad in history, is that there is an actual underground railroad helping slaves escape. Cora and Caesar plan their escape. What follows is an incredible journey of fear, heartache, abuse, terror, and survival. She travels from state to state and encounters different situations and people on each of her stops. The main goal is for her to reach freedom and a life that she has always dreamed of.
What I Thought Of It: I went into this reading a tad bit fearful that I wouldn't enjoy the novel. Once I started the first few chapters I fell into a rhythm of a beautiful reading experience. There were parts when I was confused and found myself having to do some rereading, but isn't that what we teach our young readers to do. I was also confused on the realistic part of the story and the "magical" aspects, but once I let that go, everything fell into place. The writing in this novel is outstanding and the author sure does know how to tell a story. There were parts that were deeply disturbing, but when telling about this experience it should be upsetting. I'm glad I gave this Oprah pick a chance and hope she announces more wonderful stories in the future.
Who Should Read It: This is definitely an adult read. If you have followed Oprah's Book Club in the past, then this is a novel for you. Adult readers that enjoy historical fiction, especially focused on slavery, this is the book for you. Happy Reading!
Rating: 4 STARS out of 5 Stars