Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Taylor, Mildred D. The land

Taylor, Mildred D. The land. Speak/Penguin, 2001 [0-14-250146-8]
In this prequel to "Roll of thunder" Taylor takes us back to the years just after the Civil War. Paul (a former slave) is the 14 year-old son of a large farm owner. While he is treated well by his father, he is not white and now allowed many of the other privileges is white brothers receive. Taylor uses the language of the day, refusing to "whitewash" history. The language (the use of the "n-word") and story can be harsh. After many struggles with his father, Paul and a black friend of his set out on their own. Paul decides that he wants to own land, hence the books title. This 375 page book is a long and sometimes painful read. It documents the harsh treatments former slaves received at the hands of the white people of the south after they had been freed. This is a must-read for 7th graders and up.


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