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Cornelia Walker Bailey models herself after the African griot, the tribal storytellers who keep the history of their people. Bailey’s people are the Geechee, whose cultural identity has been largely preserved due to the relative isolation of Sapelo, a barrier island off the coast of Georgia. In this rich account, Bailey captures the experience of growing up in an island community that counted the spirits of its departed among its members, relied on pride and ingenuity in the face of hardship, and taught her firsthand how best to reap the bounty of the marshes, woods and ocean that surrounded her. The power of this memoir to evoke the life of Sapelo Island is remarkable, and the history it preserves is invaluable.
“Delightful…. In writing that is both unadorned and poetic, Bailey’s soft, Southern wit shines through, resonating with humor and charm. Readers enthralled by anthropology and African-American life will not want to put this book down.”–Publishers Weekly
“A memorable read…. Highly recommended.”–Library Journal
“A special book that reveals the unconquerable spirit of a people who, though torn from their African homeland, imprinted America with a unique culture that continues to endure.”—Ebony