Book Review-A Strange and Bitter Fruit

51VBPPEhVRL__SX311_BO1,204,203,200_Title: A Strange and Bitter Fruit (the side pic is a new updated pic)
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Author: Davis, Barry
Year Published: 2010
Author tweaked it in 2013 to update editorial issues and update accuracy of simple historical mistakes.

*Spoiler Alert*

I actually read and reviewed this awhile ago (2013) but it has still stayed with me, so I wanted to share it on the blog.

My review from goodreads:
This is not a book that I would normally pick up to read due to the time setting (1880s). Along with the language. However, after reading the description via email for free kindle books, I decided to try it. I am glad that I did.

This book catches you off the bat. It opens with the death of a boy’s family. By the usual southern tactic (trashy) hanging of a black family. The boy, name Tee, was a very memorable character. Initially his mission was to retaliate against the men that killed his family. As time passes, the retaliation became a retaliation against Tee. At what point does the retaliation stop? Tee was successful in retaliation of a main point man but, still, at what point does it end? It ended for Tee when he met Sara and when they had a family.

Unfortunately the men that hung Tee’s family still was out to get him and unfortunately, Tee’s daughter was caught in the crossfire. Does Tee now begin to retaliate again?!? Tee’s decision was clear and he said and stuck to “no more killing”. Tee’s son Robert witnessed the killing of his sister Harriet and felt guilt. Robert picked up the retaliation theory after Robert became a man, which was not a good outcome.

In the end, one asks who really win’s in the game of retaliation? No one really does.

The author Davis puts forth his thoughts on the storyline of the book. Davis states that his book was not picked up by a big named publisher because, according to them, Tee would not have been memorable. I completely disagree. Tee’s character is what kept me connected to the book. A man that faced uncertainty throughout his life after the death of his entire family. Him being able to triumph in a successful life and trying to do “right” only to die a senseless death in the end. This book leaves you with a serious thought process…when does the death spree end?

The author also makes a point at the end of the book, in author notes, about terrorism. What is the difference between what Osama Bin Laden did on 9-11 to what the white man did to the Native Americans as well as the African Americans? Did the white man not terrorize Native Americans and African Americans back in the day? If not by an airplane into a building but by psychological abuse by being made to feel inferior?! I whole heartily agree and always did and this is coming from a white female. We, as humans, will be our own demise in this world. White on black, black on black, Bin Laden on America, America on Iraq, Hitler on Jews, Crips vs Bloods, etc-the list goes on and on and on…it is a never ending cycle of death. Unfortunate but truthfully…brutal death is a sad outcome in many lives. It is unnecessary but will probably always be a continued cycle.

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