The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead; 2016; $26.95; 306 pages; Doubleday, New York, NY; 978-0-385-54236-4; checked out from Multnomah County Library, Hillsdale; 1/22/17-2/2/17
Why did I read this? A co-worker recommended it (although she doesn’t remember doing so) and the Corner Reading Society decided to read it during the coming year.
Cora and Caesar decide to escape the brutality of the Georgia plantation on which they are slaves. Caesar has found a contact that will put them on the underground railroad. Even as they escape and make new lives for themselves they live in constant fear of slave hunters and other whites, who would do them harm in a myriad of ways. Each chapter is from the point of view of the characters, encompassing some we don’t hear about or from until their chapter arrives. It is a complex story that incorporates some fantistical elements such as how the train runs. I think it is a story that would take several readings to really understand the story.
Grade B, I had difficulty following the story at a couple of points due to the structure of the novel.