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The Prophets

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Paperback
Published: January 2021
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BIC Subject: Historical fiction
Published By: Hachette Australia
 
Published: 12-Jan-2021
Format: Paperback, 320 pages,
ISBN: 9781529405729
Stock Code: 9405729
Product Description
 
With lyricism reminiscent of Toni Morrison and James Baldwin, Robert Jones Jr. tells an unflinching story of forbidden love between two enslaved men in Mississippi whose relationship threatens all around them.With lyricism reminiscent of Toni Morrison and James Baldwin, Robert Jones Jr. tells an unflinching story of forbidden love between two enslaved men in Mississippi whose relationship threatens all around them.
'Rarely is a book this finely wrought, the lives and histories it holds so tenderly felt, and rendered unforgettably true' Ocean Vuong, author of On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous

In this blinding debut, Robert Jones Jr. blends the lyricism of Toni Morrison with the vivid prose of Zora Neale Hurston to characterise the forceful, enduring bond of love, and what happens when brutality threatens the purest form of serenity.

The Halifax plantation is known as Empty by the slaves who work it under the pitiless gaze of its overseers and its owner, Massa Paul. Two young enslaved men, Samuel and Isaiah dwell among the animals they keep in the barn, helping out in the fields when their day is done. But the barn is their haven, a space of radiance and love - away from the blistering sun and the cruelty of the toubabs - where they can be alone together.

But, Amos - a fellow slave - has begun to direct suspicion towards the two men and their refusal to bend. Their flickering glances, unspoken words and wilful intention, revealing a truth that threatens to rock the stability of the plantation. And preaching the words of Massa Paul's gospel, he betrays them.

The culminating pages of The Prophets summon a choral voice of those who have suffered in silence, with blistering humanity, as the day of reckoning arrives at the Halifax plantation. Love, in all its permutations, is the discovery at the heart of Robert Jones Jr's breathtaking debut, The Prophets.