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Pickle Me This

August 10, 2020

The Vanishing Half, by Brit Bennett

A literary highlight of my week away in July was Brit Bennett’s The Vanishing Half, the follow up to her smash-hit debut The Mothers, which was one of my favourite books of 2016. A novel that reaches across lines of race, class and gender, across history, across an entire nation…to tell the story of a pair of twin sisters who run away from the southern town they come from, a community of light-skinned Black people. And then years later, in the summer of 1968, one of the sisters returns with her daughter, to live out her life where she started. Ironic when she’s the one who wanted to be an actor, but it’s her twin sister who—as we learn in the rest of the book—spends the rest of her life passing as white, enacting her suburban ennui in an upscale California neighbourhood, like a character in a 1970s’ Joan Didion novel. And what happens when the two sisters’ children become connected years later? Whole lifetimes unfurling from a connection that cannot be severed, a fascinating story of halves and doubleness, infinitely satisfying.

2 thoughts on “The Vanishing Half, by Brit Bennett”

  1. Diane says:

    Kerry, I really appreciate all the lovely Gleanings you share. I’m especially honoured to be included. I’ve discovered some lovely minds and engaging bloggers. Thank you for what you do and for what you share.

    1. Kerry says:

      Thank YOU, Diane, for saying so and for your blog.

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