"Due Unto" crossed my desk as a promo copy via the publisher. I usually pass these books along to co-workers, but not this time. I recommend this book if you're a fan of historical literature. It's an engrossing story about an unbelievably cruel time in the history of mankind.
Due Unto by K. F. Jones: an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award semifinalist. In 1799, Denmark wins the East Bay Lottery. With the money he buys his freedom and more. When everything he holds dear is threatened Denmark must ultimately answer the question, to what extremes will he go to protect his family, his life? --- What would you do? --- Different from the biographies, the plays, the films, the articles, but like Denmark (the character) in Sue Monk Kidd's novel, The Invention of Wings, the characters of the novel Due Unto are woven from threads of history. In 1775, the haunting beauty of the ancient African jungle is invaded by 18th century reality when a king's warriors attack a village like a violent monsoon in pursuit of their goal. Separated in the Caribbean, Telemaque, soon renamed Denmark, is bound for Madame Chevalier's unchartered atoll where he learns what he needs to survive a modern jungle. Koi, as practical as beautiful, is sold to a Jewish businessman, Adam Wolff, a smuggler with West Indies roots but an international reach, and brought to Charleston. Their lives follow the fortunes of revolutionaries struggling for and with independence and the dichotomy of liberty amid the bonds of slavery. Inspired by real people and actual events, strong female characters--though living in a man's world--exert their influence in this adventurous coming of age love story that takes place during and after the American Revolution.
Denmark Vesey is known to history as the leader of an attempted slave revolt in Charleston, S.C., in 1822. This novel from Jones depicts Vesey's life: his youth, his enslavement, his emancipation, and his re-enslavement. Later, while in Charleston, in 1799, Vesey won a lottery prize that allowed him to buy his freedom, though he was later arrested and executed for planning the slave revolt. Jones creates a plausible depiction of Vesey's life and struggle, as well as ably rendering the tragedy and indignation of slave life. While the addition of a love story slows the novel's pace and is somewhat distracting from the central narrative, fans of historical fiction will find Vesey's story fascinating and well told.