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It’s Carnival time and the Caribbean-colonized planet of Toussaint is celebrating with music, dance, and pageantry. Masked “Midnight Robbers” waylay revelers with brandished weapons and spellbinding words. But to young Tan-Tan, the Robber Queen is simply a favorite costume to wear at the festival—until her power-corrupted father commits an unforgivable crime.
Suddenly, both father and daughter are thrust into the brutal world of New Half-Way Tree. Here monstrous creatures from folklore are real, and the humans are violent outcasts in the wilds. Here Tan-Tan must reach into the heart of myth—and become the Robber Queen herself. For only the Robber Queen’s legendary powers can save her life… and set her free.
Jeanne Duval, the ginger-colored entertainer, is descended from African slaves and white sailors. It is twilight, and she argues with her lover Charles Baudelaire in his Paris apartment. Ginger is hot in its roots with a beautiful, lush red flower above. And ginger has a bite as she does…
Mer, plantation slave and doctor, has healing hands though her spirit is sickened. She both hungers for and dreads liberation, and longs for the gods to take her home. My wishes can’t fly freely. They’re rooted to the ground like me, who eats salt.
Thais, a beauty from Alexandria, was sold into slavery and prostitution as a girl. Impelled to seek a glorious revelation, she will travel the long hot roads to Jerusalem. She is dark-skinned, this beauty, and ruddy like copper. No salt-pucker of bitterness in her. …[more]
The New Moon’s Arms is a mainstream magical realism novel set in the Caribbean on the fictional island of Dolorosse. Calamity, born Chastity, has renamed herself in a way she feels is most fitting. She’s a 50-something grandmother whose mother disappeared when she was a teenager and whose father has just passed away as she begins menopause. With this physical change of life comes a return of a special power for finding lost things, something she hasn’t been able to do since childhood. A little tingling in the hands then a massive hotflash, and suddenly objects, even whole buildings, lost to her since childhood begin showing up around Calamity.
One of the lost things Calamity recovers is a small boy who washes up on the shore outside her house after a rainstorm. She takes this bruised but cheerful 4-year-old under her wing and grows attached to him, a process that awakens all the old memories, frustrations and mysteries around her own mother and father. She’ll learn that this young boy’s family is the most unusual group she’s ever encountered-and they want their son back.
Nalo Hopkinson has gained universal acclaim as one of the most impressively original authors to emerge in years. Now she presents Skin Folk, a richly vibrant collection of short fiction that ranges from Trinidad to Toronto, from fantastic folklore to frightening futures, from houses of deadly haunts to realms of dark sexuality. Powerful and sensual, disturbing and triumphant, these tales explore the surface of modern existence…and delve under the skin of eternal legends.
Set in Toronto after the turn of the millennium, Brown Girl in the Ring focuses on “The Burn,” the inner city left when Toronto’s economic base collapsed. Young Ti-Jeanne lives with her grandmother, who runs a trade in herbal medicine that is vital to the disenfranchised of The Burn. A fascinating cast of characters combined with the dark world of Afro-Caribbean magic create an altogether original and compelling story by an intriguing new voice.