Homegoing by Yaa GyasiHomegoing by Yaa Gyasisticker-burst

Homegoing

byYaa Gyasi

Paperback | May 2, 2017

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about

"Homegoing is an inspiration." —Ta-Nehisi Coates 

An unforgettable New York Times bestseller of exceptional scope and sweeping vision that traces the descendants of two sisters across three hundred years in Ghana and America.


A riveting kaleidoscopic debut novel and the beginning of a major career: Yaa Gyasi's Homegoing is a novel about race, history, ancestry, love and time, charting the course of two sisters torn apart in 18th century Africa through to the present day.
     Two half sisters, Effia and Esi, unknown to each other, are born into two different tribal villages in 18th century Ghana. Effia will be married off to an English colonist, and will live in comfort in the sprawling, palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle, raising "half-caste" children who will be sent abroad to be educated in England before returning to the Gold Coast to serve as administrators of the Empire. Her sister, Esi, will be imprisoned beneath Effia in the Castle's women's dungeon, before being shipped off on a boat bound for America, where she will be sold into slavery.
     Stretching from the tribal wars of Ghana to slavery and Civil War in America, from the coal mines in the north to the Great Migration to the streets of 20th century Harlem, Yaa Gyasi has written a modern masterpiece, a novel that moves through histories and geographies and—with outstanding economy and force—captures the intricacies of the troubled yet hopeful human spirit.


From the Hardcover edition.
YAA GYASI was born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama. She is a recent graduate of the presitigious Iowa Writers' Workshop where she held a Dean's Graduate Research Fellowship. Her short stories have appeared in African American Review and Callaloo. Homegoing is her debut novel.
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Title:HomegoingFormat:PaperbackDimensions:320 pages, 8 × 5.18 × 0.71 inPublished:May 2, 2017Publisher:Doubleday CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0385686153

ISBN - 13:9780385686150

Reviews

Rated 2 out of 5 by from Great premise, difficult to follow I heard great things about this book and purchased it, thinking it would be as amazing as everyone had said it was. The beginning of the story was captivating, however as the book went on it was difficult to follow the story line, as each chapter focused on a new individual a generation or two later, and only one chapter dedicated to them. Within each chapter, there were other characters involved so it was a lot to take in, and once you did, the chapter would end and a new character's story would start. It didn't flow like a normal story line, rather a collection of mini stories within the overall story and that is perhaps why I didn't like it as much.
Date published: 2018-09-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Buy this book! Everyone needs to read this book. Yaa Gyasi's writing is stunning. I borrowed this book from my local library and a few pages in, I ordered a copy from Indigo because I just knew I had to have a copy for myself.
Date published: 2018-07-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A great read Homegoing is a book that keeps you captivated from beginning to end!
Date published: 2018-07-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An incredibly spellbinding tale of two families! Two sisters, separated forcefully and their descendants and their experiences. I couldn't put it down!
Date published: 2018-07-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from riveting A gripping book you can't stop reading. Includes a little history lesson as well as perspective on current climate. I'd love a follow up or a sequel.
Date published: 2018-07-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Blew me away I am struggling to put into words just how powerful a book Homegoing is. It is is beautiful, touching and thought provoking; destined to become a classic that I strongly believe everyone should read. The plot is a truly unique concept, covering the 300 year history of one family through a series of short stories. It starts with two sisters - one stays in Ghana, while the other is kidnapped and shipped off to America as a slave. The chapters alternate between the two branches of the family, following one person on each side per generation. There is a family tree at the front of the book that I referenced back to for every chapter - thank goodness for that, because it really helped to keep all the names and events straight in my head. It’s a beautiful, stunning book. Please - go read it.
Date published: 2018-06-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very Good. I liked this book a lot, but I'm not sure I liked it as much as everyone else did. Still a very good read though.
Date published: 2018-06-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from LOVED This book is on my favourites shelf. The way the author eloquently shares each character's story leaves you wanting more.
Date published: 2018-06-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book This is was a great yet heartbreaking story. Gyasi does an amazing job at describing the feelings of the characters to the point that the reader also feels them. The family tree is also really helpful when trying to keep who everyone was straight. As another reviewer says, a great intergenerational, historical fiction book.
Date published: 2018-06-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from unique story I loved the concept of this book following the families throughout the generations, and showcasing how different their lives were!
Date published: 2018-06-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Masterpiece This novel is amazing. It's essentially a dozen or so intricately interwoven short stories. They overlap in characters, symbolism, metaphor...it is so carefully constructed and beautifully written. This is an amazing debut novel and this author is now on my must-read list.
Date published: 2018-05-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Book I have Read in Years This book is SO good. Perfect if you love intergenerational stories. I couldn't put it down. It was truly beautiful (and sad) to read and I cannot believe that it was a first time author. I very highly recommend checking out this book.
Date published: 2018-05-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic This book is so beautifully written and engaging, I could not put it down (and I can't stop thinking about it now that I'm done reading it). I love the style of the book, although I have to confess that I was often flipping back to the family tree to make sure that I was following along properly. My only complaint? I wish that the book was longer, so we could learn more about the characters who weren't given their own chapter! Highly recommended!
Date published: 2018-04-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great first book Love the various perspectives, gave the story much more meaning!
Date published: 2018-03-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved this! Absolutely loved this book! I would love to see more in depth stories about each character is this book as I feel Yaa Gyasi did such a great job at developing each story line. Highly recommend this, it was a great read!
Date published: 2018-02-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting style In 18th Century Ghana, 2 sisters born in separate villages, go on to lead very different lives. This book seemed to try to cover too much- 8 generations- so that I had to keep checking the family tree to keep track of the characters. Interesting writing style and story but I feel she should have been more focused on a few generations, or written the story in a series of books instead.
Date published: 2018-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING A really fascinating premise following two branches of the same family, experiencing hardship and challenges both in the US and in Ghana. Interesting to track history through generations, found that this book was really engaging and would definitely recommend it to everyone!! #plumreview
Date published: 2018-02-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from SO GOOD! I really liked this book!!! It was beautiful and it also made me think. I expected it to be kind of hard to get through, but it wasn't at all. My only criticism was that with so many characters, it was hard to keep track of who was who and who was related to who. The family tree at the beginning helps. #plumreviews
Date published: 2018-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautifully-rendered A sweeping debut novel of stylistic complexity and remarkable emotional force, Homegoing traces three hundred years of Ghanaian history through descendants of half-sisters, Effia and Esi. Notable for its lyrical prose and ambitious subject matter, Gyasi’s Homegoing presents an atmospheric and haunting portrayal of the continued effects of slavery and race relations in both Ghana and the United States of America.
Date published: 2018-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from more than excellent This is a historical heart wrenching epitome of racism and slavery. Yaa has successfully inflicted the pain on every words that the characters have been suffering all through out the story. I highly recommend this to my friends as this is not simply a story, it educates more than it entertains.
Date published: 2018-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from 5 Star Book if there ever was one... What a powerful novel, and what a perfect way to move the plot along through the introduction of a new generation in each chapter. Homegoing begins with Effia and Esi; half sisters that have been born unaware of the other’s existence. Effia ends up married to the white governor (James) in charge of slavery for this area, and Esi ends up on one of his ships bound for America as a slave. Generations of descendants from each woman reveal the story of the previous generation...until a full circle has been made. Hardship, grief and unfairness plague each generation. But these people rise up in the face of obstacles and remain strong, hopeful, and always open to love. The most touching chapters for me were from the perspectives of H (such unfairness...but so strong), Akua, (devastating), and Ness (incomprehensible.) Every once in awhile you read a book that truly changes you, and the way you look at the world. Reading this book was not entertainment, it was an education. You simply can’t give it less than 5 stars. 5 stars.
Date published: 2017-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from terrific! this was such a good book I had a hard time putting it down. Suggested it to my friend for her book club and she can't wait to read it. Will probably read again Highly recommend
Date published: 2017-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My new favorite book! This story is both inspiring, heart breaking and real. It shows the chronological history of racism and slavery. The way it is set up is unique and works in an impactful way. I couldn't believe I found a book I admired so much. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of those books that enriches you by reading it... This book made me cry..but it also made me hopeful. In 300 pages, Yaa Gyasi manages to include multiple rich perspctives, centuries of history, and a beautiful overall story. Probably will be passing this book on to anyone that reads...
Date published: 2017-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You will want to read and reread this book I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. As soon as I finished it, I began reading it again. Yaa Gyasi is able to weave the story line between two family trees and several generations. Very well written and engaging, a book that is difficult to put down. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2017-10-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of the most intricate books you will ever read Yaa Gyasi has succeeded in threading one of the most delicate tails of heritage, family, faith, and culture that I have ever read. Homegoing is so fascinating, so heartbreaking, so uplifting and so powerful that it is near impossible to put down. An incredible must-read
Date published: 2017-09-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You will want to re read this book, it is that engaging! I truly enjoyed reading this novel, and although I had other books that I wanted to start reading, I felt compelled to reread it as soon I I reached the end. Although the time periods and family generations and connections may be confusing, the family tree at the beginning of the book is very helpful. I highly recommend this book.
Date published: 2017-09-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful touching story So glad to have read this. Looking forward to read what Yaa Gyasi has to offer in the future.
Date published: 2017-09-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing! I don't read a lot of literary fiction. It intimidates the hell out of me, which makes me scared to pick it up. However, I'm in a book club now and this was the book that was chosen so... I had to read it. And I really enjoyed it. I can't believe this is a debut novel. Yaa Gyasi has written a complex family history that she somehow manages to fit in 300 pages, without the feeling that anything has been sacrificed. These characters only get about 20-30 pages to tell their stories but they feel so complete, and you move onto the next story with a real sense of who that character was. This is an important book and I'm glad I read it. I might also be more inclined to pick up other literary fiction works, which makes me pretty happy.
Date published: 2017-09-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Engaging history Very powerful and engaging read. Immerses the reader in a history that must be heard and remembered.
Date published: 2017-09-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Such a good book. Especially great for those who have a hard time getting to plots of books as the changing of characters and their stories made it easy to pick up and then put down when busy. Didnt feel like i was missing out on forgotten information. Well written and easy to read and fall in love with the characters and sometimes i found myself getting angry when their part of the story would end
Date published: 2017-08-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible I can't help but rave about this book! Homegoing is an incredible novel weaving together stories of slavery, family, and history. It's an important, and in many ways, timely piece that makes you reflect on intergenerational strengths and struggles. Highly recommend.
Date published: 2017-08-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This is a great book The tracing of two family lineages, from the origins of the Ghanaian slave trade to the present, does an amazing job of demonstrating the effects of slavery through many further generations, rather than studying it as an isolated event. Homegoing is an amazing narrative.
Date published: 2017-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This is really a great book The tracing of two family lineages, from the origins of the Ghanaian slave trade to the present, does an amazing job of demonstrating the effects of slavery through many further generations, rather than studying it as an isolated event. Homegoing is an amazing narrative.
Date published: 2017-08-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of my favourite books Beautifully written multigenerational tale. This is one of the best books I have read in a long time. I loved how each chapter focused on a different generation.
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Such a great read! I love the way the two timelines flowed, and the development of each character as the story moved forward in time. If only each of the stories could be longer! Even the short time we spend reaching each character's story it felt like I still connected as if I had been reading about them the whole time.
Date published: 2017-07-26
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Liked it! Reading this I learned quite a lot and yet at the same time there were too many stories and characters, which ultimately reduced the overall effect of the book.
Date published: 2017-07-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing and heartbreaking To understand where we are, we must know how we got here. This book is a must-read.
Date published: 2017-07-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Captivating I enjoyed this book. It almost reads as if it’s a short story collection. Each chapter tells the story of a different person that is connected to Effia or Esi through generations. The author is a wonderful storyteller. Her prose is so captivating. No matter how difficult the subject she’s writing about is you keep wanting to know more. Each chapter is tells a fragment of each character's life. Each chapter has a kind of open ending because their story still continues when we leave them. It leaves more to be desired. I would have liked to know more about them. Overall, a great read that deals with relevant societal topics. Everyone should read this.
Date published: 2017-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Eye-opening The story of the devastation brought upon generations of Africans for many centuries is one we must acknowledge. This is a must-read. It ties in well with recent hits, such as the YA novel The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.
Date published: 2017-06-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Really, really, really good Gyasi did not disappoint with her debut novel. This book is equally heartbreaking and inspiring. I only wish it had a bit more recognition.
Date published: 2017-06-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Ambitious Debut! I finally read the book after all the hype and it didn't disappoint!
Date published: 2017-06-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic! This is one of my new faves. I loved every page, every character and every winding thread that was weaved throughout the book. Would happily read it again!
Date published: 2017-06-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My new favourite This may be one of the best novels I have ever read. It's so incredibly written, and the premise is very unique. No spoilers, but I haven't stopped thinking about the ending of this novel because it was so fantastic.
Date published: 2017-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A brilliant book deserving of a wide readership Following the descendants of two sisters in alternating perspectives as time progresses, this brilliant book masters voice in a way I have no read in many, many years. It's a remarkable story told in exceptionally. Unforgettable, this book deserves to endure on bookshelves and in the culture for generations to come.
Date published: 2017-06-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Read I really enjoyed this book! I loved the idea of following families down along generations. I only wanted to know more about what happened to each character after their chapter was over.
Date published: 2017-05-27
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Interesting Idea I thought the idea for this book was interesting - it follows the descendants of two half-sisters throughout the last few hundred years. I also liked that this book taught me about the history of Ghana, something I didn't know too much about. I enjoyed some of the characters' stories, but I also found that others didn't get enough time to develop since each descendant gets only one chapter focusing on them. I still enjoyed the read, though. I'd recommend this to anyone who likes historical fiction, or to anyone who wants a compelling story with a fresh take.
Date published: 2017-05-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Strong writing. The characters are very well drawn. Each time you left a character, you wished there as more. It was an interesting means by which to represent the historical record.
Date published: 2017-04-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from History and Truth This book taught me so just in just a few hundred pages. I believe it captures the true meaning of slavery and its aftermath. Of course, it could not explain it all. But I learned so much while loving and caring for every character of the story. Brilliant! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-04-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read Great read. I highly would recommend this to a friend.
Date published: 2017-04-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing It made me care about so many of the characters. Each chapter had me wanting to know more. A very real tale of the slave trade and its devastating effects as well as showing life in Africa in comparison. I loved it!
Date published: 2017-04-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Gripping Story! I absolutely loved the style and concept of this book. The story of these two women and their descendants is powerful and inspirational. Each chapter left me wanting so much more, but I still finished it satisfied. I highly recommend checking this out.
Date published: 2017-04-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome. Very beautiful and would absolutely recommend.
Date published: 2017-04-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very ppignant A very poignant and powerful book. A bit hard to understand with the time jumps, but overall I would recommend this book to anyone!
Date published: 2017-04-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So powerful. What an original concept. After finishing, I jumped right on the Internet to start researching some of the history that the author touched on. I'd read a full length novel on any of the characters that she wrote a chapter on.
Date published: 2017-04-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fantastic Great read. Will be reading again. I would recommend to a friend #plumreview
Date published: 2017-04-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Inspirational I simply enjoyed reading this story. I loved it. Wonderful for all ages.
Date published: 2017-03-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A power and impactful story Homegoing look at the history of slavery in 18th century Ghana continuing to America until the mid 1900s when Blacks face segregation from the families of two half sisters. Gyasi looks at what it means to be black in Africa and America and white privilege. What I loved about this story was reading about the different generations and how they intersect with each other through class, socio-economic class and race.
Date published: 2017-03-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a story! An excellent addition to any library.
Date published: 2017-03-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Well written, compelling, readable. My only complaint is that it isn't twice as long.
Date published: 2017-03-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A necessary read A masterpiece of a novel that deals with extremely important topics
Date published: 2017-03-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful Book This book was amazing! It was beautifully written. it was a beautiful, but sad, story. I would recommend this book to anyone -100%! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-03-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow To put it simply, I don't have the words to describe how wonderful Homegoing is. All I have to say is that everyone should read it, and that they won't regret doing so.
Date published: 2017-03-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Difficult but important novel First, I feel the need to place a disclaimer for my rating of 4 out of 5 stars. Typically, when I give a book 4 out of 5 stars, it means I really 'liked' the novel and really 'enjoyed' the reading experience. That could not be further from the truth for this novel. The plot of this novel: horrific yet fascinating. The layout of the novel: unique and well done. The writing: incredible. Yet, the experience of this novel was as far as 'enjoyable' as you can get. It truly is hard to review this novel because along with it being intriguing and fascinating, it was horrific and it was graphic. In all honesty, it's on my list of top five 'most difficult books to read' (along with "A Little Life" by Hanya Yanagihara) due to the level of discomfort it places the reader in while reading. The content is definitely heavy so be prepared for that. With all of that being said, I definitely would recommend this book to others. It was eye opening, it was thought provoking, and it really exposed differences and similarities between cultures as well as what does and what does not change with the progression of time.
Date published: 2017-03-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The work of a real storyteller This story covers the whole sweep of slavery and race in the US by beginning on the Gold Coast of Africa. I loved her style of writing: she's a real storyteller. I did find it slightly difficult to keep track of the characters through the generations. Perhaps I needed to refer more often to the family tree at the front of the book.
Date published: 2017-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Gripping I devoured this book in a couple days. I suggested it to my book club to diversify our reading list and boy, am I pleased! Every chapter is unique and just as interesting as the book started. It takes you over a long period of history, and it maintains a great many themes.
Date published: 2017-02-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! This book was amazing! You have to get into the story a bit but wow what a fantastic read
Date published: 2017-02-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from amazing This book made me laugh and cry. So heartbreaking. Would recommend to anyone.
Date published: 2017-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My Favourite Book of 2016! An amazing debut novel that I was unable to put down! I cannot wait for more of this author's work to be published.
Date published: 2017-02-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this! Such an amazing story. You might think that since each chapter is a new perspective that you wouldn't connect with the characters, but you really do. Wonderful story! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-02-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing experience It moves you in a big way, reminds me of Born a crime
Date published: 2017-02-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read!, This book takes you on quite a journey. It was beautifully written and deeply moving. A must read!,,
Date published: 2017-02-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Great book I enjoyed this read. Would recommend to a friend. #plumreviw
Date published: 2017-02-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful! When I sat down to read this book, I didn't take a break until I was at least halfway through. It was so wonderful to get in my comfy chair and become lost in the words as the rest of the world slipped away. It has been a while since I've started a book and felt so immersed in it. Personally, I love stories that span different characters or generations, and Homegoing was a book of this nature that was beautifully written. Beginning with two sisters in 18th century Ghana, Homegoing tells the story of what happens to them and their decedents as one is sold into slavery and one is married to a white man. One downfall of books that are structured in a way that gives little glimpses into different characters' lives is that some of the perspectives can be really boring. I didn't find that this was the case with this book at all! While reading, I found myself thinking I would put down the book once I finished with a certain story; however, once I read the first few sentences of the next story, I was immediately intrigued by this new character and their life. I can't recall any character perspectives that I didn't enjoy. This is certainly a sign of great storytelling! Homegoing is probably my favourite debut novel of 2016, so obviously I would recommend this one! I think if you are interested at all in African and American history, this is a book for you, and even if you are simply a fan of good storytelling, this is a book for you! It's hard to believe that this is Yaa Gyasi's first novel and I'll be interested to see what she puts out next!
Date published: 2017-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Stunning Such a beautiful tale of two sisters
Date published: 2017-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Brilliant I absolutely loved this book. Well written. I love how Yaa painted a clear picture of such important themes throughout many generations of histories and geographies. Very helpful keeping track of the family tree at the beginning of the book. I couldn't put it down, life got in the way of trying to read it straight through.
Date published: 2017-02-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful When I sat down to read this book, I didn't take a break until I was at least halfway through. It was so wonderful to get in my comfy chair and become lost in the words as the rest of the world slipped away. It has been a while since I've started a book and felt so immersed in it. Personally, I love stories that span different characters or generations, and Homegoing was a book of this nature that was beautifully written. Beginning with two sisters in 18th century Ghana, Homegoing tells the story of what happens to them and their decedents as one is sold into slavery and one is married to a white man. One downfall of books that are structured in a way that gives little glimpses into different characters' lives is that some of the perspectives can be really boring. I didn't find that this was the case with this book at all! While reading, I found myself thinking I would put down the book once I finished with a certain story; however, once I read the first few sentences of the next story, I was immediately intrigued by this new character and their life. I can't recall any character perspectives that I didn't enjoy. This is certainly a sign of great storytelling! Homegoing is probably my favourite debut novel of 2016, so obviously I would recommend this one! I think if you are interested at all in African and American history, this is a book for you, and even if you are simply a fan of good storytelling, this is a book for you! It's hard to believe that this is Yaa Gyasi's first novel and I'll be interested to see what she puts out next!
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Beautiful This is one of the most ambitious, heartbreaking, and beautifully written books I have ever read.
Date published: 2017-02-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Awesome epic! The characters in homegoing were very interesting and woven together expertly. The family tree at the front was helpful for keeping everything straight.
Date published: 2017-02-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from loveee intresting read, good book
Date published: 2017-01-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Book I really enjoyed this one. It brings you so many years of history within this family.
Date published: 2017-01-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from buy it this is a captivating read.
Date published: 2017-01-29
Rated 1 out of 5 by from book of negroes was better this is an imitation. read other things.
Date published: 2017-01-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting take on slavery It was a bit jarring to go into new narrators constantly but it was enjoyable to get such a broad view of slavery.
Date published: 2017-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from a great read! making you want more OMG I loved this book. It didn't take me long to read because the story was so real to me. I had me thinking about the past, the present and the future of the black race. I loved the fact that some of the stories did not have a ending ( making you wondering what happen to the person from that chapter). Now I want to go to Africa to find my own roots. Thank you
Date published: 2017-01-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Beautiful book. Reminicent of "The Book of Negroes". I can't say enough about this book! I love how the author intertwined these families and their stories. The characters were perfectly described and I truly felt like I was watching this story through the authors eyes instead of reading it! I HIGHLY reccomend this novel!
Date published: 2017-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A must read This novel made me cry and put me into a rage then made me cry again. And yet, I didn' t want to put it down. I would gladly re-read Homegoing just to experience the gut wrenching and beautiful writing and the way the author manages to bring each character (and there are many) to life during their brief time on the page. A great literary achievement from a very talented young writer.
Date published: 2017-01-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Such a beautiful book I was engrossed from page one to end of the book
Date published: 2017-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING. IM STILL IN AWE, this book truly is a work of art. Seems like Aaron Sorkin made it, but this is an amazing book, i recommend it to everyone.
Date published: 2017-01-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Simply Amazing This book is stunning, I've been telling everyone to read it. It is up there as one of my favorite 2016 reads. Such an amazing story and makes you fall in love with each character. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awe-inspiring The way that Yaa Gyasi is able to weave such a beautiful and emotional story through generations is incredible. Will be recommending this book to all of my friends this year!
Date published: 2016-12-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Homegoing This book is stunning! One of my favourite reads this year. The stories and how they weave together is so wonderful and interesting, you will not be able to put it down. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible Gyasi has created an incredible piece weaving together stories of slavery and struggle. This book provides a window into the horrible experiences of many families and the long lasting reprecussions that can be seen across North America even today. While I also found myself referring back to the family tree, I did not feel this took away from the reading experience at all. The author's writing style allows you to connect with the characters in each chapter, and unlike an earlier criticism, I did not feel it left me wanting more. This book was flawless and it's hard to believe it was a debut novel!
Date published: 2016-12-19
Rated 1 out of 5 by from I Want my time back I recommended this novel to our book club and no one liked it. No plot, short on character development. author is obsessed on relating how each character is conceived. Poorly constructed back and forth between families. Huge gaps in timeline and no rationalization to some sequences. For instance: one character who advocates for independence later has emigrated to the U.S. with no reasons given. This is simply a novel written for writings sake and has no redeeming literary value. I will never read another piece by this authour. There is just too much good stuff out there to bother wasting my time.
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read, one of the best books I have read this year I was in Ghana visiting family last year and I had the chance to visit the Castle were the slaves were kept before being traded. Reading the book .....made it so really. The author desribed it so well in the book. Great read. I couldn't put the book down and read well past my bed time, night after night. I have just purchased the book for a niece. I hope she will enjoy the book as much as I did.
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I absolutely loved this book Although at times the family tree was a little hard to follow (I often returned back to the family tree at the front of the book as reference) I loved this book. It was an interesting look at the impact slavery has had over the generations. I couldn't put it down, I don't think I've read a book this fast before in my life. Definitely worth reading!
Date published: 2016-12-05
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Good book, I gave it to a friend to read too
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book! This is one of the best of the year. Historical fiction over several generations. I rarely give 5 stars but this is worthy.
Date published: 2016-11-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Unforgettable One of the best books I've read this year - masterfully written and powerful
Date published: 2016-11-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Book of the Year Without a doubt my favourite book I've read this year. Engaging, thought provoking, and beautifully written.
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved this! My mother bought this for me cause my Husband's family is from Ghana, and we are heading back their this coming January. I found this book very eye-opening on how much slavery still impacts us in present day. It has made me more interested in going to Ghana and doing a tour of the Gold Coast Castle.
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Necessarily brutal A chronicle of the many permeations of racial and sexual violence following generations of the same family. A very well-written and assured debut.
Date published: 2016-11-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from best book i've ever read #plumreview This book is a work of art. It is written so beautifully and completely had me the entire time. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My Favourite Book of the Year! The scope of this book is unlike any other I've read. Fascinating family history across the ocean and generations
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great generational story! This is a great story! I loved the writing and the story, and if it had been longer I would have been happy! Highly recommend
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Brilliant This is one of the best books I've ever read. From the brilliant concept to the gorgeous writing, this is one for the ages.
Date published: 2016-11-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing An incredible novel. The author has done an amazing job with such an intricate story line. It's a must read!!!
Date published: 2016-11-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fantastic Debut from New Author A strongly written debut novel that captures great feelings of authenticity from perspectives told from hundreds of years ago. Gyasi is able to write each chapter (each of which is told from a different character's perspective) as if she truly was that character herself. Her ability to tell a story is remarkable and compels the reader to delve further into the book. While the ending, particular the last two chapters or so, aren't as strong as the rest of the book, the overall experience is pleasant, compelling, and well worth it.
Date published: 2016-11-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Book of 2016 I was pleasantly surprised with how I felt after reading Yaa Gyasi's debut novel. From the premise to the transitions between stories to the ending, Gyasi executed her idea beautifully. The story starts with one lady who gives birth to twins and follows the girls and their future generations as they lead their separate lives, unaware of their connection. This book was powerful and memorable. A definite page turner!
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Beautiful story This was probably one of the better books I read this year. It is a beautifully written story about the descendants of two half sisters in Africa and the trials and tribulations they face over the generations. Although we like to think we have come a long way, it is easy to see while reading this book, that many of the issues presented in the book still linger today and I think the book helps to explain why that is. We still have a long way to go to heal. My one complaint would be that we often do not know what happens to most of the characters in the story. Each chapter is the story of a new descendant and what happened to the ancestors may only be mentioned in passing. It would have been nice to get some closure on some of the previous stories. That said...I think this is a reflection of how it is in real life. While we would all like to know our history and where we come from, most of our stories are simply lost to history.
Date published: 2016-11-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Strong, but not without problems. All too often the big advance first novels fail to follow through on their promise. Homegoing is the exception. Esi and Effia are two half-sisters, unknown to each other. Esi is sold into slavery, travelling to the US while Effia remains in Africa, married to the British governor of the local slave castle on the coast. The book is structured in paired chapters, each telling the story of one descendant on either side of the ocean for each generation. The strength lie in the first two thirds of the novel. The early part of the book, particularly those chapters set in Africa, are almost of no particular time with few mentions of dates or specific events, as instead focusing on the individual story of the character at hand. This has the effect of making the stories more personal and affecting. Of particular note is Gyasi's willingness to explore the African tribes wars and their own contribution to the salve trade, and the lasting effect that has on the continent. However, the novel is not without its weaknesses. The last third of the book, particularly the American chapters, become less specific to a certain character and more an attempt to cover as many major historical events as possible. Where before the characters were able to show the effects of slavery and historical events, suddenly we are subjected to a great deal more exposition and generalizing. In the space of one chapter, Gyasi covers the Great Migration, jazz clubs, Harlem, "passing", civil rights, the NAACP and heroin addiction, in doing so her characters become less real people and more broadly drawn stereotypes. While the final chapters reveal a book that seems to have gotten away from the author - not unexpected in a first time novelist - Gyasi still offers a compelling look at the legacy of slavery. I look forward to her future works.
Date published: 2016-11-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome storyline I have only one word to describe this book 'awesome'. Great story! I could not put this book down!
Date published: 2016-09-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful I would have never imagined I would have liked a book of this subject so much, but I did. The way the book was written was beyond engaging the characters were unique and timely but not cliché of the time and place they were portrayed. Whatever your into I would recommend this book!
Date published: 2016-09-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The best of its kind A unique and compelling chronicle of a family, richly told, filled with hope. Yaa Gyasi writes her characters with such care that the plot never becomes a mere narrative of actions and geography, or a clinical retelling of unforgivable yet persistent injustices - she pulls you so tightly into their lives that you connect closely with each character. After being utterly lost in this book for three days, left reeling each time I put it down, I've only just finished reading it - and I look forward to starting it over again.
Date published: 2016-08-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful Story This book is a masterpiece. Each chapter follows a new character, alternating between Effia and Esi's decedents, and Gyasi left me wanting more. Each time a new character was introduced I was disappointed because I did not want to say goodbye to the previous character yet, and then by the end of the chapter, I was in love with the next character and thus the cycle started over. You will not regret buying this book.
Date published: 2016-08-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Wonderful Sweeping Tale I recieved this book for free from Heather Reisman and will review here I must admit I was nervous to start this book. I it's not my normal book style. But this book is amazing. It's so well written and the story just drew me in. This is definatly destined to become a best seller and will take pride of place in my library.
Date published: 2016-06-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Modern Classic "Homegoing" is undoubtedly one of 2016's literary debuts to watch for. Yaa Gyasi, to her credit, has crafted an extremely captivating multigenerational story that is both sentimental and intellectual. It is told with such warmth and clarity, and is filled with mystique and curiosity, all with a distinguishable format to boot. "Homegoing" definitely has plenty of selling points in its favour. I have a huge fascination with family history, and this novel captures what is so intriguing about learning what the past means to each passing generation and how our future is shaped by present choices. In "Homegoing," two Ghanaian sisters are split, leading drastically different lives - one as a mistress of a colonial castle, the other sold as a slave - and so their lineages veer off in very distinct directions. Every chapter of the book is thus told from both sides of the generations that follow. To illustrate this better, Gyasi likens it to a fishtail braid, crisscrossing till the very end of the braid. The chapters were presented like a collection of short prose that were contained on its own poetic way yet had invisible links to each other. It's hard not to relate to a character more than another and want to know more about them beyond their own chapters, but you subconsciously hold back because of how finite their perspectives are. Still, you do sense their presence reverberate into the rest of the narrative. If "Homegoing" is ever to be adapted for the screen, a television miniseries has to be the way to go in order to properly tell each character's story in an episodic manner. This might be a new buzzy book this year, but "Homegoing" has a solid foundation and timeless theme to make it a perennial bestseller with a very long shelf life, and to propel it to its eventual stature as a modern classic.
Date published: 2016-03-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Masterpiece This book is a master class in emotional and engaging storytelling. Yaa Gyasi, at the age of 26 (!) has written a novel that spans centuries of Ghanaian & American history, yet it is as intimate as it is comprehensive. Absolutely stunning in every way.
Date published: 2016-03-13

Editorial Reviews

A New York Times BestsellerInternational BestsellerWinner of the National Book Critics Circle's John Leonard Prize for Outstanding First BookWinner of the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut FictionFinalist for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut FictionRunner-up of the 2017 Dayton Literary Peace Prize in fictionLonglisted for the International Dylan Thomas PrizeNominated for the Center for Fiction First Novel PrizeA New York Times Notable BookA Washington Post Notable BookA Time Top NovelAn Oprah Favorite BookA Globe and Mail Best BookA Guardian Best BookA National Post Best BookA CBC Best BookAn Entertainment Weekly Best BookA Buzzfeed Best BookA BBC Best BookAn Esquire Best BookAn Atlantic Best BookA Kirkus Reviews Best BookAn NPR Best BookA Harper's Bazaar Best BookAn Elle Best BookA Paste Magazine Best BookA Jezebel Best BookAn A.V. Club Favorite BookA British GQ Best BookA Popsugar Best BookA Financial Times Best Book"It's impossible not to admire the ambition and scope of Homegoing, and thanks to Ms. Gyasi's instinctive storytelling gifts, the book leaves the reader with a visceral understanding of both the savage realities of slavery and the emotional damage that is handed down, over the centuries, from mothers to daughters, fathers to sons. At its best, the novel makes us experience the horrors of slavery on an intimate, personal level; by its conclusion, the characters' tales of loss and resilience have acquired an inexorable and cumulative emotional weight." ―Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times Book Review"Gyasi's characters are so fully realized, so elegantly carved—very often I found myself longing to hear more. . . . I think I needed to read a book like this to remember what is possible. I think I needed to remember what happens when you pair a gifted literary mind to an epic task. Homegoing is an inspiration." —Ta-Nehisi Coates, National Book Award-winning author of Between the World and Me"A blazing success. . . . The sum of Homegoing's parts is remarkable, a panoramic portrait of the slave trade and its reverberations, told through the travails of one family that carries the scars of that legacy. . . . Gyasi's characters may be fictional, but their stories are representative of a range of experience that is all too real and difficult to uncover. Terrible things happen to them; they're constantly cleaved apart, and in the process, cut off from their own stories. In her ambitious and sweeping novel, Gyasi has made these lost stories a little more visible." —Los Angeles Times"Homegoing is assured and propulsive, feeling as inevitable as time itself in its pacing, each chapter delving deep into the life of one man or woman, reeling through lives burned by histories both global and domestic. . . . Homegoing is in a league of its own, contemporary and complex and astoundingly assured. . . . With Homegoing, Gyasi arrives, already a major and inspiring literary talent." —Toronto Star "Yaa Gyasi's much-anticipated novel lives up to the hype. . . . [Homegoing is a] dazzling and much-anticipated debut. . . . At 27, Gyasi is already a consummate craftsperson, ferrying us to and fro across the Atlantic with ease. . . . Homegoing is a footbridge across the Atlantic—proof that blood is thicker than wide water, confirmation that, yes indeed, we can go home again." ―Maclean’s"Ambitious, but Gyasi pulls it off. . . . Such a powerful debut." —The Globe and Mail"Homegoing, Gyasi's debut novel, is a work of remarkable intimacy and scope that introduces a writer whose artistry and ambitions are equally matched." ―National Post"Homegoing [is a] hypnotic debut novel by Yaa Gyasi, a stirringly gifted young writer. . . . The great, aching gift of the novel is that it offers, in its own way, the very thing that enslavement denied its descendants: the possibility of imagining the connection between the broken threads of their origins." ―Isabel Wilkerson, The New York Times"[A] rich debut novel. . . . [Gyasi is] asking us to consider the tangled chains of moral responsibility that hang on our history. This is one of the many issues that Homegoing explores so powerfully. . . . The 18th-century chapters resonate with the tones of legend, while the contemporary chapters shine with clear-eyed realism. And somehow all this takes place in the miraculous efficiency of just 300 pages. . . . Truly captivating." ―Ron Charles, The Washington Post"Epic. . . . Astonishing. . . . Page-turning." —Entertainment Weekly"Like Zadie Smith and Diana Evans and Nigel Shriver before her, Yaa Gyasi has delivered what will probably be my favourite book of 2016. . . . Extraordinary. . . . She writes so vividly that you carry every character along with you as you meet the next—their history, their tragedy, their hope, all of it coursing through, multiplied by generation. Homegoing is a beautiful achievement. . . . It's essential. It's the work of a major new voice in women's literature." —Elaine Lui, co-host of The Social"The most powerful debut novel of 2016. . . . Carrying on in the tradition of her foremothers—like Toni Morrison, Edwidge Danticat, Assia Djebar and Bessie Head—Gyasi has created a marvelous work of fiction that both embraces and re-writes history." —Paste Magazine"Homegoing is stunning. . . . Weaving together multiple perspectives, Gyasi's powerful novel is fire and water, black and white, broken and whole—a tremendous feat." —Winnipeg Free Press"Tremendous. . . . Homegoing brims with complex emotions and insights about the human condition. It is essential reading from a young writer whose stellar instincts, sturdy craftsmanship and penetrating wisdom seem likely to continue apace—much to our good fortune as readers." ―San Francisco Chronicle"[Homegoing is] exuberantly large-canvas, taking on the biggest American themes—race and sex, history and identity—with fresh perspective. . . . [Toni Morrison's] influence is palpable in Gyasi's historicity and lyricism. . . . What is uniquely Gyasi's is her ability to connect it so explicitly to the present day: No novel has better illustrated the way in which racism became institutionalized in this country." ―Vogue"A first novel that brims with compassion. . . . [A] sprawling epic. . . . Meshing the streets of Harlem and the Gold Coast of Ghana in the pages of one novel is a remarkable achievement. . . . In Homegoing, Yaa Gyasi has given rare and heroic voice to the missing and suppressed." ―NPR Books "Rich, epic. . . . Each chapter is tightly plotted, and there are suspenseful, even spectacular climaxes." —Christian Lorentzen, New York Magazine"Gripping."  —Wall Street Journal"A memorable epic of changing families and changing nations." —Chicago Tribune"Remarkable. . . . Compelling. . . . Powerful." —Boston Globe"Homegoing is an epic novel in every sense of the word. . . . A stunning, unforgettable account of family, history, and racism, Homegoing is an ambitious work that lives up to the hype." —Buzzfeed"Stunning. . . . [Homegoing] may just be one of the richest, most rewarding reads of 2016." —Elle"Homegoing is a remarkable feat—a novel at once epic and intimate, capturing the moral weight of history as it bears down on individual struggles, hopes, and fears. A tremendous debut." —Phil Klay, National Book Award-winning author of Redeployment"Exceptionally engaging. . . . Homegoing is one hell of a book . . . the writing is so damn good. . . . I recommend Homegoing without reservation. Definitely a must read for 2016." —Roxane Gay, New York Times bestselling author of Bad Feminist"Moving and haunting, Homegoing is a compelling story that takes us further along the road of understanding who we are." —British GQ"Homegoing is stunning—a truly heartbreaking work of literary genius." —Bustle"Gyasi's amazing debut offers an unforgettable, page-turning look at the histories of Ghana and America, as the author traces a single bloodline across seven generations. . . . Gyasi writes each narrative with remarkable freshness and subtlety. A marvelous novel." ―Publishers Weekly, starred review"The arrival of a major new voice in American literature." —Poets & Writers"Unique. . . . Striking." —The Huffington Post"Dazzling." —Mother Jones "A promising debut that's awake to emotional, political and cultural tensions across time and continents." —Kirkus Reviews  "[A] commanding debut . . . [that] will stay with you long after you've finished reading. When people talk about all the things fiction can teach its readers, they're talking about books like this." —Marie Claire "One of the most fantastic books I've read in a long time. . . . You cry and you laugh as you're reading it. . . . A beautiful story" —Trevor Noah, host of The Daily Show and New York Times bestselling author of Born a Crime"A deeply empathetic novel. . . . An affecting examination of the soul-destroying and lingering effects of slavery." —Financial Times "Gyasi is an unshowy writer, with moments of real authority. She gives voice to suppressed stories, and that feels hugely important. . . . [Homegoing] certainly deserves our attention." —The Sunday Times (UK)"Bewitching. . . . Just as un-put-down-able as The Girl on the Train. With twisty surprises at every bend, this haunting tale of sisters, betrayal and the murky waters of our memories will stay with you long after you turn the last page." —Popsugar