- File Size: 1380 KB
- Print Length: 389 pages
- Publisher: William Morrow (February 12, 2013)
- Publication Date: February 12, 2013
- Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0089LODXW
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,306 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$14.99|
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The House Girl: A Novel (P.S.) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 389 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Top Customer Reviews
The House Girl by Tara Conklin is such a book. Well written with superb attention to detail and a wonderful ability to make scenes come to life, The House Girl tells the stories of two women--Josephina, the artistically talented house slave in Virginia and Lina, the ladder-climbing young attorney in New York City. Their stories become intertwined when Lina starts working on a retribution case for a big client. Looking for the perfect plaintiff, Lina discovers that Josephina may actually be the true artist of the famous works of her owner.
To be honest, the story began slowly and I struggled to stay involved. I must admit that I only had quick moments of time to read lately and The House Girl sat neglected on my night stand for a few weeks. It was only the last few days that I was able to devote the time this book deserved. I spent the last few evenings devouring the story and falling in love with the likable and rich characters.
Part heartrending tales of the abuse of slaves; part a genealogical mystery and part a story of individual healing, The House Girl won me over.
Josephine's story revolves around one day, the day she decides to run for freedom. I felt this story dragged and had too many holes in it that Lina would magically come to fill. Josephine's story did have moments of suspense about whether or not she would be caught trying to escape.
Lina's story moves quicker and is full of coincidences that propel her to find out about Josephine. I found myself not liking Lina as a character. I don't need to like a character to like a novel, but Lina annoyed me. Her passivity about her own life irked me; there are secrets that she knows are being kept from her about her mother, but she doesn't press to find out about them. The feasibility of a billion to trillion dollar slavery reparations case is only nominally questioned and then presented as a moral imperative. Only a few of the many legitimate arguments against such as class-action case are presented in a brief discussion and then utterly discounted.
Additionally I found it unbelievable and irritating that Conklin would make it seem that finding a person who could prove they were descendent from slaves with a credible story of harm, to be such a haphazard, needle-in-the-haystack situation. Surely there are millions who could fit that bill.Read more ›
THE HOUSE GIRL flawlessly switches between these two time periods telling of the life of Josephine, a slave girl, Lina, a New York City attorney, and Lina's father, Oscar, an artist. The book leads you through the life of Josephine as she struggles with her decision to "run, it leads you through the life of Lina who is researching families who may benefit from wrong doing during the period of slavery in the United States, and it leads you through the life of Oscar trying to make amends through his artwork.
The most significant question, though, along with finding descendants is that of who really did create the paintings found in Lu Anne Bell's home? Was it really Lu Anne or was it Josephine? Corresponding with this painting mystery and the mystery of Josephine's descendants is that of Lina's mother...what really did happen to her when Lina was only four?
You will get caught up in both stories because of the great detail Ms. Conklin uses and because of the research. I love "digging" for historical information. As you switch between the two stories, you will ask yourself to choose which life you were more interested in....Lina's or Josephine's....it may be difficult to choose since both were appealing and drew you in, but for me Josephine's story wins hands down for interest.
It took a few chapters, but you will become so involved, it becomes difficult to stop reading....you want to know what will become of the characters and the answer to the mysteries.
Each character comes alive with the vivid detail Ms. Conklin uses, and she puts their feelings out in the open...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was really really good read, I couldn't put it down. I really enjoyed reading this book. Happy I got it.Published 14 days ago by Kendra
Not your usual saga of slavery in antebellum america. Not the search for artistic provenance nor the skewed view of a NYC law firm pursuing a precedent breaking reparations suit. Read morePublished 18 days ago by A. Roberts
Loved it. The weaving of two times in history was good. I felt I go to know Josephine ..... She was a strong woman... Read morePublished 25 days ago by CTS
Expected more info on fate of main characters, i.e. Lina/JasperPublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
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