Octavia E. Butler
Kindred Cover



Dana, a modern black woman, is mysteriously transported through time and space to a slave plantation of the early 19th century in Maryland. She discovers that she is somehow connected to Rufus Weylin, the son of the owner of the plantation. She is "summoned" back in time whenever his life is in danger.

This story is quite powerful and Butler is very effective at taking the reader into the pre-Civil War south from the eyes of a slave. It is rare (at least for me), to get so enmeshed in a story that you forget that you are even reading at all. Butler has a special and unique quality in that regard. She not only enables one to identify with the protagonist and care about her, but I actually would dread and become fearful whenever Dana was drawn back to that plantation. The book starts out with the sci-fi element of time travel, but evolves into a slave narrative, runs with it, and doesn't let go. It is incredible.

My first novel from Octavia Butler but won't be the last.