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The Great Negro Plot: A Tale of Conspiracy and Murder in Eighteenth-Century New York

3.80  ·  Rating Details  ·  50 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
In 1741, New York City was thrown into an uproar when a sixteen-year-old white woman, an indentured servant named Mary Burton, testified that she was privy to a monstrous conspiracy against the white people of Manhattan. Promised her freedom by authorities if she would only uncover the plot, Mary reported that the black men of the city were planning to burn New York City t ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published January 23rd 2007 by Bloomsbury USA
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Mocha Girl
Oct 11, 2009 Mocha Girl rated it it was amazing
Mat Johnson delves into an embryonic era of Colonial American history with his latest offering, The Great Negro Plot: A Tale of Conspiracy and Murder in Eighteenth-Century New York. The non-fictional title implies a stoic tome, but surprisingly the author infuses a fresh voice and contemporary observations into the telling of fateful events that occurred some 266 years ago.

The recipe for this 1741 episode of madness is a combination of several ill-timed events: a rumor of arson among townsfolk
...more
RK Byers
May 09, 2010 RK Byers rated it it was amazing
Mary Burton was the 17th Century New York Black Man's Joe McCarthy.
Karen Simpson
Oct 19, 2007 Karen Simpson rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everyone
how to make a nonfiction book to read as literary fiction.
Sisters of the Desert Sun
Feb 16, 2014 Sisters of the Desert Sun rated it really liked it
Mat Johnson is great! This account of the New York conspiracy was well researched and delivered in a highly engaging manner. This is a very quick read but leaves you with a wealth of information. The Great Negro Plot was quite informative. Definitely a must read recommendation on my list.
ohradiogirl
Aug 03, 2010 ohradiogirl rated it liked it
I've enjoyed Johnson's previous novels. "The Great Negro Plot" is historical fiction. Not quite the summer read that my reading group had hoped for, but Johnson's sarcasm sneaks in quite a bit to break up the monotony of the continual witch hunt that took place in New York in the 18th century.
Margaret
Dec 28, 2015 Margaret rated it did not like it
Shelves: apush
A disappointment. Johnson read some wonderful sources to write this, including several primary sources, but the book is neither historical fiction (which I had hoped) nor is it really a historical analysis. He retells the events with minimal context and 21st century commentary. The best thing about this book is the list of sources Johnson consulted, which I would love to read!
Joshua
Jun 27, 2007 Joshua rated it liked it
Shelves: america, colonialism, nyc, race
A quick account of an interesting event in America's and New York's history.
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