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Showing 1-10 of 13 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 60 reviews
on March 10, 2016
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Bebe Moore Campbell’s Brothers and Sisters, originally published by Putnam in 1994* in the aftermath of the Rodney King beating, is a true testament to what I wish we could see more of on bestseller lists today. Published during an era of growing racial tensions (though what era doesn’t have that?) and political outspokenness through hip-hop music, this novel brought to life the realities of being an educated and successful modern-day African American woman. Stereotypes were debunked and explored, and here Campbell helped to set new standards in literature for femininity and “blackness,” while also probing such sensitive topics as the church, the pros and troubles of racial solidarity and reaching across the racial line to find friendship. The characters that the late Campbell portrayed here were realistic and 3-dimensional; the tension that she painted in the air was palpable with the turn of every page, like a heartbeat pulsing throughout the chapters.

Brothers and Sisters was a read that featured relatable dialogue that easily flowed off the tip of the tongue; Campbell’s use of vernacular outside of the workplace and in the “mean streets” of LA beautifully contrasted with dialogue that went on within the walls of the workplace to create a masterful portrayal of what it is like to live in two worlds at the same time, from dealing with stress from the professional expectations of peers in a racist and sexist environment to simultaneously surviving in a world equally hostile outside of the workplace doors. Deceit, mistrust, racism, sexism, accusations of rape, love, dating, social and corporate ladders, competition and banding together to survive in hostile waters all play a role in this novel.

The trouble that many novels have in this genre is that they do not come off as authentic. The dialogue is stilted or unfittingly formal in areas where authenticity is needed or ragged in situations where a sophisticated touch is being attempted by the author. There is a finesse to portraying this double consciousness (for those W.E.B. DuBois followers), this world of African Americanism that is honestly a world within itself, and it is difficult to find an author who depicts this lifestyle—this social setting—accurately and with the tautness and stress that it carries with in real, everyday life. The beauty in which Campbell offered that to her readers here is to be applauded. Following Esther Jackson through a day in her world will bring you out the other side more conscious of societal pressures at play if you weren’t already, deeply entertained and honestly tickled by the thoughts that these characters think but don’t always say. This one is a read for anyone, because there’s something for everyone here if your mind is open.

Make no mistake: I love a good thriller, a thought-provoking character piece or the occasional humor-filled antics of chick lit with a verve and vigor that you can see in this blog, but it’s novels like this that I wish we could see more of in the spotlight today. 5 stars *****

*The cover used on the blog is from the 2009 reprint publication of this novel by Berkley.
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on June 14, 2017
Great insight into the experiences, expectations, and efforts of a black female to find her place in a multi-racial society.
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on February 11, 2015
Brothers and Sisters should be a required reading for all high school/college students. I teach this in a 300 level college course and the students not only love it, but are also learning a great deal about race, gender, and socioeconomic issues.
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on March 26, 2015
this book was well thought out and put down with some experiences that must have been personal, this book was written from within and it touches the minds of all who turns the pages...
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on September 10, 2013
But them both; no delays !!
A writer who look at relationships between man and woman,
blacks and whites.
More readable than anything I have read from Toni Morrison
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on February 12, 2011
I was so excited that I found this book in audio form. I'm dislexic and a sophmore in college. This allowed me to keep pace with the rest of my class and insured I could get my homework turned on time. Thank you for this sell. It's benefiting my education.
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on April 29, 2015
Great book, excellent writing.
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on January 15, 2013
I love this cd. It is great and I love her books but I don't have a lot of time to read so I purchase the cd's.
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on April 14, 2010
Great novel so far. I'm on chapter 10 as I write this but I can say for sure I like the way the setting and characters are being developed.
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on March 11, 2011
okay I started reading 'Brothers and sisters' thinking Im going to get into one of thoses fast paced novels and thinking it would be like Ms. Moores 'Your Blues Aint Like Mine' but I was disappointed. This book was unbelievably slow! and had waaaaay tooo many details about the bank where the characters worked/ ok, sure you give some detail about what the characters do and where they work but when you dedicate like 2 chapters towards it, it gets kind of boring. Anyways I tried to continue reading but didnt get half way until I closed it, I just couldnt take it anymore. Maybe it is a good book for the ones who gave it 5 stars but I just couldnt get into it. This is just my opinion. Take it how u want to. = )
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