ARC & Black History Month Review: These Ghosts Are Family by Maisy Card

Death is just one long therapy session.

I feel as though I’m standing ankle deep in the ocean and I see a huge wave coming my way but I’m rooted to the spot.
I’m unable to run, god help my swimming abilities, all I can do is hope it crests before it hits me fully.

Nope, turns out I’m going for this ride. Full speed ahead, boogie board at the ready. This is how it felt reading this book. With every turn of the page I was rolling in the water and diving into the unknown. I had a semblance of what I was getting into and upon completing it I’m still shaken in a way.
As a Black American myself I have always been interested in my family’s history and our roots. It’s harder for us to pinpoint our ancestry due to slavery and there’s also the fact that my maternal grandfather was adopted and accounts over the years get muddled.

This book to me is wondrous because it’s the history of an entire bloodline and the focal point is not just one person.
It showcases the ugly, the good, the humanity, and the fragility of life and family.
Family isn’t perfect because people aren’t perfect. It’s downright hideous and most of the time life does not have a happy ending.

It just doesn’t.

These Ghosts Are Family starts with a man named Stanford Solomon who in actuality is not Stanford Solomon. He is really Abel Paisley and he faked his death years ago and stole the identity of his best friend.

He is at the end of his life and is about to meet the daughter he abandoned years ago, Irene Paisley, a home health aide who has no idea what she is about to walk int
The story then spirals from Abel’s actions and tells the story from colonial Jamaica to present day Harlem.

From there we trek down a family tree of this fractured family and their trauma and ghosts. I think I gave you my impression of this in the first few paragraphs but wow, this was a read.

It immediately pulls you in and doesn’t let you go until the very end.
It’s not just the account of one person either. From Vera, Abel’s first wife, to Debbie a white distant ancestor and back to the slavery days…There are ghosts, there is love, death, and the prose is both cruel and beautiful.

At the end of it all the bloodlines are muddy but clear, just like all of ours. Nothing in the world is pristine and it’s not meant to be.
Maisy Card has written a phenomenal novel executed beautifully and told in the format of an intricate spider web.

Each strand tells a story just waiting to be told.

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💜💜💜💜💜 5/5

Expected publication: March 3rd 2020 by Simon Schuster

3 thoughts on “ARC & Black History Month Review: These Ghosts Are Family by Maisy Card

  1. Wow, this sounds like an epic-like read and quite an intense one at that! Like Joanna said, I don’t think I’ve seen a book like this before. It sounds really interesting! Reading your review I can tell just how sucked in you were and how much it’s in your head! Great review lovely ❤


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