Makeda by Randall Robinson

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"Eloquent and erudite, Robinson's oft-times mystical coming-of-age saga teems with rich and evocative historical insights."

"Hypnotic . . . one of the finest novels this year . . . [Robinson] is a gifted storyteller."

"Makeda is beyond ambitious and imaginative . . . well written and powerful, with an ending that is equal parts tragic and romantic in nature . . . a breathtaking revelation, weighted with romance and lovely passionate prose."
--New York Journal of Books

"Robinson is not only exploring what it means to be black. His theme of knowing the past before planning the future applies to all cultures, all people. Pick up this odyssey of family drama, history and love, and be prepared to consider your own beginnings."
--Shelf Awareness

Makeda Gee Florida Harris March is a proud matriarch, the anchor and emotional bellwether who holds together a hard-working African American family living in 1950s Richmond, Virginia. Lost in shadow is Makeda's grandson Gray, who begins escaping into the magical world of Makeda's tiny parlor.

Makeda, a woman blind since birth but who has always dreamed in color, begins to confide in Gray the things she "sees" and remembers from her dream state, and a story emerges that is layered with historical accuracy beyond the scope of Makeda's limited education. Gradually, Gray begins to make a connection between his gr

Part coming-of-age story, part spiritual journey, and part love story, Makeda is a universal tale of family, heritage, and the ties that bind. Randall Robinson plumbs the hearts of Makeda and Gray and summons our collective blood memories, taking the reader on an unforgettable journey of the soul that will linger long after the last page has been turned.

About Randall Robinson

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Randall Robinson is the founder and former president of TransAfrica, the African-American advocacy organization he established to promote constructive and enlightened U.S. policies toward Africa and the Caribbean. The author of The Debt, The Reckoning, Quitting America, and Defending the Spirit, he lives with his wife and daughter in St. Kitts.
Published August 30, 2011 by OpenLens. 350 pages
Genres: History, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Unrated Critic Reviews for Makeda

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(According to Robinson’s postscript, this detailed astronomical knowledge of the Dogon is a mystery that has yet to be resolved.) Gray’s fascination with his grandmother’s story eventually leads him to Mali, and his research confirms the existence of Ongnonlou as well as geographical details of t...

Aug 15 2011 | Read Full Review of Makeda

New York Journal of Books

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“Makeda is beyond ambitious and imaginative and, at times challenging, but it is also well written and powerful, with an ending that is equal parts tragic and romantic in nature.

Sep 30 2011 | Read Full Review of Makeda

MostlyFiction Book Reviews

She dreams “in pictures – color pictures, pictures of people, pictures of odd places – though she had never in her life seen a human soul…” she tells Gray, her youngest grandson, later.

Sep 11 2011 | Read Full Review of Makeda

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Ann Caswell

Ann Caswell 5 Sep 2013

Added the book to want to read list