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Friday, January 24, 2014

Book Review: Roots: The Saga of an American Family, by Alex Haley

Roots: The Saga of an American FamilyRoots: The Saga of an American Family by Alex Haley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I watched this miniseries as a child and remember even then feeling awed and moved by the stories of Alex Haley's ancestors. The novel was a beautiful, poignant, and realistic portrait of several generations of black families from the kidnapping of the famous Kunta Kinte in Africa in the late 1700s down through Haley himself in modern times.

It's one of those books that you feel like you live through with the characters. The final chapter, where Haley steps in and tells his real-life story of searching for and finding his ancestors, brings everything full circle, and was a very emotional experience for me.

I've pondered on this book for the last week or so since I finished it. This one book inspired countless people to seek out their ancestors. Probably millions of people have been "found" as a result of it. I feel a great debt of gratitude to Haley for this, on behalf of the whole human race. I highly recommend this book.

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