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But when Simon Moses died, Jacinta's mother descends into madness, leaving her daughter impoverished and alone, her only real friend an unemployed thespian, Alfred Russell-Smyth. Jacinta longs for a better life, to surround herself with beauty, to run "high and wide and deep". As she grows older, however, prejudice-- her own as well as that of others-- leads her to make adventurous but damaging choices in her life.
In her quest for happiness and security, Jacinta flees to the American South and marries a white man. But when her daughter, Lady, is born with a disability-- ruining her hopes for a picture-perfect life-- Jacinta travels with her baby and husband to Africa to search for answers in her father's homeland. Her experiences there change her forever, for it is in Africa, a land that echoes with her father's stories, that she is forced to draw on her family's great strengths and weave something brilliant out of their history of pain.
"Lady Moses"is a novel about being both black and white. But it is less about issues than about passionate characters in extraordinary situations, about how one woman employs her creativity, intelligence and strength to forge an identity. With its unflinching insight and dazzling prose, "Lady Moses" marks the entry of a sparkling new voice in African-American fiction.
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