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Book of the Little Axe Paperback – 26 July 2021

4.2 out of 5 stars 107 ratings

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Review

Praise for Book of the Little Axe

"They say the past is a foreign country but forget to mention that it's also wild. Book of the Little Axe reminds us. Ranging from Trinidad to the mountainous West, Lauren Francis-Sharma has woven an emotional, immediate, ambitious story of love and belonging. Rather than retell a story of first contact between native people and newcomers to the new world, Francis-Sharma has produced a deeply moving novel about the ways in which all of us have always been connected."--David Treuer, author of The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee

"From her gripping first sentence, Lauren Francis-Sharma draws her reader into her intoxicating tale of intrigue, love, conflict, and power struggle at a pivotal time in the histories of Trinidad and the western United States. Her research is meticulous, her prose seductive, her characters mesmerizing. Book of the Little Axe shines a bright light on the little-known connections between the Caribbean and the United States. Readers will find it almost impossible to put this book down."--Elizabeth Nunez, author of Prospero's Daughter and Even in Paradise

"A shimmering epic that forges new paths into the old territory of the American West. Brilliant and unforgettable. Book of the Little Axe is an astonishing journey."--Debra Magpie Earling, author of Perma Red

"Book of the Little Axe is an epic novel that recreates the hybrid history of Native and African peoples during the era of American exploration and expansion. Lauren Francis-Sharma's care for her characters and skill with her subject shine through every page."--Laila Lalami, author of The Other Americans

"Lauren Francis-Sharma has written one of those thrilling novels - so valuable and welcome - that adds (or better say restores) another strand to our national narrative. We're all the richer for Book of the Little Axe."--Peter Ho Davies, author of The Fortunes

"Book of the Little Axe is epic in ambition and scope, a sweeping tale that illuminates pivotal historical periods in Trinidad and North America, and the links between them. This is also the story of a young man's coming of age and a mother's secrets and a family's love in the face of violence. Lauren Francis-Sharma brings her characters and their tangled histories to life with tremendous precision and sensitivity. This is the work of a major voice, a brilliant talent."--Laura van den Berg, award winning author of The Third Hotel

"[A] persuasively researched account so richly evocative of a relatively obscure corner of history as to make it seem almost phantasmagorical."--Kirkus Reviews

"Francis-Sharma's prose shines in this epic and propulsive historical novel that is set in Trinidad and the American West, and follows the life of Rosa Rendón, who is talented, bright, and fierce."--Millions

"[A] satisfying and perceptive transnational family saga . . . In this masterly epic, the pleasure lies in piecing everything together."--Publishers Weekly

"Francis-Sharma . . . offers fascinating characters across the broad sweep of the American continent at a time of great tumult, warring colonial powers, the spread of slavery, and expansion West. This is a compelling saga of family bonds, ambitions, and desires, all subject to the vagaries of powerful historical forces."--Booklist (starred review)

"[A] satisfying and perceptive transnational family saga . . . In this masterly epic, the pleasure lies in piecing everything together."--Publishers Weekly

"Francis-Sharma . . . offers fascinating characters across the broad sweep of the American continent at a time of great tumult, warring colonial powers, the spread of slavery, and expansion West. This is a compelling saga of family bonds, ambitions, and desires, all subject to the vagaries of powerful historical forces."--Booklist (starred review)

Praise for 'Til the Well Runs Dry

The New York Times Sunday Book Review Shortlist

Black Caucus of the American Library Association 2015 Honor Book in Fiction

"As universally touching as it is original."--New York Times

"Lauren Francis-Sharma turns the family drama on its ear with this lush, elegant epic." --ESSENCE Magazine

"A saga ripe with heartbreak and joy . . . Francis-Sharma delivers a rich and satisfying debut on the ties of family, love, and culture."―Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Lauren Francis-Sharma is also the author of the critically acclaimed novel ’Til the Well Runs Dry. She resides near Washington, DC with her husband and two children and is the assistant director of the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.


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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Grove Press (26 July 2021)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 400 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0802158544
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0802158543
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 13.97 x 3.56 x 20.83 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.2 out of 5 stars 107 ratings

About the author

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Lauren Francis-Sharma is the author of "'Til the Well Runs Dry" and "Book of the Little Axe," which will debut May 2020. She is the Assistant Director of Bread Loaf Writer's Conference, the proprietor of D.C. Writers Room, and a MacDowell Fellow. Lauren, a former corporate lawyer, is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan Law School.

Customer reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5
107 global ratings

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CM
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended
Reviewed in the United States on 26 May 2020
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Ms. Dailey
5.0 out of 5 stars A Very Important and Enlightening Story of History & Love
Reviewed in the United States on 31 May 2020
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7 people found this helpful
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Walter Nixon II
5.0 out of 5 stars It takes but a little axe to chop down the tallest tree.
Reviewed in the United States on 6 June 2020
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4 people found this helpful
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Genevieve Beltran
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner from Lauren Francis-Sharma!
Reviewed in the United States on 9 June 2020
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AuthorAnnaBella
5.0 out of 5 stars #Litfantabulous Read
Reviewed in the United States on 13 October 2020
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5.0 out of 5 stars #Litfantabulous Read
Reviewed in the United States on 13 October 2020
A provocative story about life, love, family, motherhood, belonging, colorism, classism, racism, African and Native American history. Fiction marries non-fiction in this compelling and provocative story. The author masterfully incorporated historical events that took place in Trinidad and into the old American West territory.
Lauren Francis-Sharma skillfully crafted a captivating story that entertained as well as educated us with what was obviously an extensive amount of research. Crucial to the story was each character's role. The characters were entangled in complicated relationships. All were necessary for the ultimate journey in seeking freedom, that only knowing the truth can bring.
The main character Rosa Rendon would take us on an unlikely feat for people of color during the 1800s. She freely crossed the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, journeying from Trinidad to the American West territory.
Rosa exhibited feminists tendencies, refusing to be choke-hold into woman servitude. She boldly took hold of life, challenged the ideations, social beliefs, and laws that governed gender biases. For Victor, it's a coming of age story, struggling with needing to belong and self-identity. With the strength of his mother's love, he would embark on a tumultuous journey of finding his truth, unblocking his path.
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