The Devil in America

Kai Ashante Wilson

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The Devil in America

The Devil in America Scant years after the Civil War a mysterious family confronts the legacy that has pursued them across centuries out of slavery and finally to the idyllic peace of the town of Rosetree The shatterin

  • Title: The Devil in America
  • Author: Kai Ashante Wilson
  • ISBN: 9781466863569
  • Page: 440
  • Format: ebook
  • Scant years after the Civil War, a mysterious family confronts the legacy that has pursued them across centuries, out of slavery, and finally to the idyllic peace of the town of Rosetree The shattering consequences of this confrontation echo backwards and forwards in time, even to the present day.

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      Posted by:Kai Ashante Wilson
      Published :2018-07-25T22:35:49+00:00

    One thought on “The Devil in America

    1. karen on said:

      While true that such profoundly sustaining traditions, hidden under the guise of the imposed religion, managed to survive centuries of slavery and subjugation, we should not therefore suppose that ancient African beliefs suffered no sea changes. Of course they did. ‘The Devil’ in Africa had been capricious, a trickster, and if cruel, only insomuch as bored young children, amoral and at loose ends, may be cruel: seeking merely to provoke an interesting event at any cost, to cause some disrupt [...]

    2. Althea Ann on said:

      This piece effectively conjures the horrific evils of American slavery - horrors which even old African magic cannot mitigate, in this tale of a family up against the overwhelming odds of racism.However, I felt that the fractured and meta-fictional elements of the story detracted from its power.

    3. Leseparatist on said:

      When I finished this utterly unsettling, strikingly original and deeply creepy story, I started wondering whose writing it reminded me of. I couldn't put my finger on it until, scrolling down the page on Tor, I noticed a link to Wilson's appreciation of Lanagan. Of course. Wilson praises Lanagan for "that class of consolation available only from fiction that attends to life’s most painful aspects without flinching" - this is what Wilson does in this short story, so compelling and horrifying. I [...]

    4. Bill Khaemba on said:

      Click here to read the novella for freeTorThank you tor for the free book.Scant years after the Civil War, a mysterious family confronts the legacy that has pursued them across centuries, out of slavery, and finally to the idyllic peace of the town of Rosetree. The shattering consequences of this confrontation echo backwards and forwards in time, even to the present day.This was one trippy, dark, unsettling little book I wasn't expecting anything going into this book, I actually didn't want to k [...]

    5. Helen on said:

      Warned against the devil, Easter ensures she only listens to the angels. Her mother warns her of their families fate, trying to keep her free; of the white folk and the African devils.I probably should've listened to 'dad' at the end.

    6. Julia on said:

      An amazing short story combining racial tensions in the 1800s with the devil’s seduction of a young girl. Very disturbing and very good.

    7. Bill on said:

      I can't really remember where I heard about this amazing novelette, but I'm guessing it was either from boingboing, or tor itself. Either way, I highly recommend it. It's a tale set just after the Civil War and centers around a small family whose members are invested with what they call "Africa magic" brought over to this country by an ancestor captured and transported as a slave. There is so much mystery and wonder and stark terror packed into this relatively brief story, and I really don't wan [...]

    8. Leonor Costa on said:

      Choca pensar que isto aconteceu e ainda acontece hoje em dia. Infelizmente são mais que muitas as vítimas do preconceito e racismo nos USA (e não só) até quando é que isso vai durar? Todos os dias se lê nas noticias mais uma ou outra história de brutalidade contra outras etnias, raças e culturas que não sejam a "branca". Este pequeno livro mostra apenas mais um exemplo do que começou a seguir à abolição da escravatura no USA. Uma família de afro-americanos com as suas tradições [...]

    9. brianna on said:

      I went into this thinking it was a novel, but really it is a short story. I think it would have benefitted from either being part of an anthology or being fleshed out into a novel. Still, it was a really well-written, fucked up, dark, intense story and I hope Kai Ashante Wilson writes more, because it's good shit. When horror and horrific true history meet, it can be a punch to the gut, which is what The Devil in America is.

    10. Lulu on said:

      Violent, yes, but vivid and emotional also, with a creative structure (including notes from "Dad" about how the story might be changed which reveal more about what is going on here) and lovely prose.

    11. The Idle Woman on said:

      This disturbing tale is part urban legend, part brutal historical fact. In the 1870s, twelve-year-old Easter is the only remaining child of loving parents. She grows up with her mother's stories of old magic and skin-changing in Africa, long before her forefathers came to America and the tobacco plantations. But is there a grain of truth in these stories? Does Easter know things which we, the reader, don't? Where are her missing siblings? And what's the true nature of the bargain she made in the [...]

    12. John Wiswell on said:

      Easter is a black child living in the U.S. South after the Civil War, and she's haunted both by figurative Jim Crow and a literal devil with an infernal bargain for her. She can hear and see the angels, and when her family asks right, bring down a little help. When they're misused, though, they destroy the entire tobacco crop. If she accepts the mysterious stranger's help, the angels will fly right again. If she accepts, oh, we live in dread for what will come up the road at the end of the novel [...]

    13. Carrie on said:

      This quick read is available here: tor/2014/04/02/the-devLike Karen says, it is a little hard to follow, but I found it rewarding. For example, in the beginning, Easter uses Brother's bayonette to lift something off the stove. Then she feeds a dog named Brother. What the? Oooooh! I love books where magic isn't neatly explained and angels can be assholes. I wish this book was longer.

    14. Chloe on said:

      This short story definitely is not for the faint of heart. I am still reeling.Read it again and I'm still devastated

    15. Amy on said:

      A sad and tragic story of an African-American family in the post-Civil War South, losing the magic they brought over from Africa.

    16. A.M. on said:

      Is it meant to be the Rosewood massacre? [the town is Rosetree, here] No… that was 1923. Or the Colefax one… or… but there are so many.Maybe that’s the point. It could have been anywhere, anytime.That’s the devil in America. The white people. The same ones that still kill people to this day. Today, the US President is spouting racism.With the added element of magic. Old old magic. The illustration gives it away - they are shifters who, once changed, can’t change back. Brother, the la [...]

    17. Antonella on said:

      Very original, historical short story, set in the aftermath of the Civil War. The paranormal/fantasy part is well integrated in the realistic part. There is also a meta-level interspersed in it: a «Dad» offering editorial advise or remembering other episodes of violence against black people in more recent US history, or quotes from a non existing essay «White Devils/Black Devils». This story will leave you sad, but it is worth. And - depending on your sensitivity to such topics - it will lea [...]

    18. Mitya on said:

      Read this because a few tweets I saw said it was amazing, and the end would blow you away Maybe I'm stupid and just not getting it, but everything about this book was predictable from start to finish. It reads like every single Important Lesson and Deep & Meaningful Literature book I was ever made to read in grade school and college. Ever single thing that happened I could have checked off a list.But I've never had much patience for literature, so the problem is likely me, I own that.Credit [...]

    19. Frida on said:

      So, the gal says, Hmph, where you come from anyways? What you got to say for yourself? And it must of been pretty good too, whatever the prince had to say for hisself, because, come nine months later, that gal was mama to your great great—twenty greats—grandmama, first one of us with the old Africa magic.This is an extremely good and extremely horrifying novella that you can read for free at tor: tor/2014/04/02/the-dev

    20. Geneva on said:

      The strangest thing is that I'm not entirely sure where this book came from. It was on the top of one of my to-read piles, but I wasn't sure I'd ever seen it before. I don't know how it got there, but I'm glad it did.This book is wonderful and powerful and disturbing and did I say wonderful? I'm not sure if it's magic realism or just magic, but though the book is little, it is fierce. It draws you in and then tears you to pieces. I'm absolutely going to find more by this author.

    21. Keith on said:

      Gruesome and fascinatingAnother fine novella from Tor. Wilson delivers a unique and gruesome story of the post-Civil War South that combines African folklore and the American horror of racism. A truly fascinating read.

    22. Kendall on said:

      I really enjoyed this story; it is creepy and creative. I love the outside-of-popular-education historical aspects, the oral-tradition feel of the narration, and the breaks in narration with the author's father's quotes that occasionally help fill in gaps of information and also provide additional historical context. Great story, very well written.

    23. Fiona on said:

      Short and not so sweet. More absolutely devastating. A long way from the author's other works I've read, but with his usual standard of amazing writing, and characters who could jump right off the page.

    24. Becky on said:

      Magical and horrible all at once, Wilson tells stories to make you feel and think. His style choices start out somewhat confusing but the story eventually shines through all the brighter for them.

    25. Chhavi on said:

      but I DO want to know how Easter tricked the devil. everything else was rich with lore and atmosphere.

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