September 22, 2014

Brotherhood by A.B. Westrick

Brotherhood by A.B. Westrick
Series: N/A
Source: Bought
Publisher: Viking
Publication Date: September 12, 2013
The year is 1867, the South has been defeated, and the American Civil War is over. But the conflict goes on. Yankees now patrol the streets of Richmond, Virginia, and its citizens, both black and white, are struggling to redefine their roles and relationships. By day, fourteen-year-old Shadrach apprentices with a tailor and sneaks off for reading lessons with Rachel, a freed slave, at her school for African-American children. By night he follows his older brother to the meetings of a group whose stated mission is to protect Confederate widows like their mother. But as the true murderous intentions of the brotherhood—-now known as the Ku Klux Klan—-are revealed, Shad finds himself trapped between old loyalties and what he knows is right.

A powerful and unflinching story of a family caught in the enormous social and political upheaval of the period of Reconstruction.

All I feel about Brotherhood is conflict. On one hand, I liked learning more about the Civil war era South, and the rebuilding of it after the war, but on the other hand, I didn't really care for the actual story. Or the main character, Shad. And I sort of have a clear reason to why I dislike him - he's a jerk.

"Oh, it's fine to associate with them in private, but I gotta snub my nose at 'em in public." I didn't like that about him. He spent so much of his time worrying about what other people thought - which meant he didn't even think about what he thought. He was so conflicted inside about it that it just tore him up! While this is very historically accurate, I didn't really like the thought of it.

I did notice another thing about Shad, though. No matter how badly his big brother treated him, he wanted to grow up and be just like him. He's doing what he thinks his dead daddy would want, and he's also doing what he feels is right by joining the KKK. Which I do understand on one level, I'd just like to know how he got to be so easily lead around.

He definitely needed to sort out his priorities. His brother was all meanness and spite, so I'm not sure why anyone would wanna be like him. Seemed like he was all trouble. All in all, this was a mostly character driven book, so I don't have much else to say. It was okay, but not fantastic or anything. The history was interesting. I guess it just wasn't really for me.

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