Greg's Reviews > Roots: The Saga of an American Family

Roots by Alex Haley
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's review
Aug 23, 08

bookshelves: history-and-biography, fiction-and-humor
Read in January, 1976

I don't often give a rating of five to works of fiction, just on general principle...I tend to like more substance. Roots, however, is an outstanding exception! I read this wonderful piece of historical fiction (apparently mingled with fact) some 30 years ago, shortly before the similarly outstanding miniseries was released. I have rarely been so enthralled with a storyline. The perspective gained from the generations long history of which Alex Haley wrote gave me added empathy for and appreciation for the people who suffered and eventually emerged from such terrible conditions.

In part because of this book, I have since read other works that have helped (somewhat) to fill in some of the gaps in my understanding of the African-American experience. Books such as Warriors Don't Cry, Black Like Me, and Up From Slavery are among them. I recommend all of these to anyone wanting to know more about this important aspect of American history.
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