Caleb's Crossing: A Story of Triumph and Love

BlogHer Review

You are an independent woman with an insatiable thirst for knowledge, being denied the only thing that you have ever dreamed of -- an education. You are a woman pretending to be simpleminded, because possessing a higher intellect than your male counterparts, is a punishable act that proves you are a sinner. You are a woman tolerant and loving, yearning for the freedom to share a close friendship with a Native American man (your best friend), who inspires you and encourages you to be the woman you were meant to be -- but whose mere presence in your world, invokes discrimination and dangerous judgments. You are Bethia Mayfield, the inspirational heroine of Geraldine Brooks' eloquent novel, Caleb's Crossing.

In Caleb’s Crossing, Geraldine Brooks weaves the beautiful, but tragic, fictitious story, of Caleb -- a Native American boy from Martha’s Vineyard, who dared to become the first of his people to graduate from Harvard College. Throughout the story, Caleb, whose intelligence surpasses many of his English classmates, is painfully discriminated against as he tries to prove that he is a learned man, worthy of a college degree from such a prestigious college, despite his constantly being ostracized and labeled as a “salvage.” Throughout Caleb’s scholarly transformation, Bethia Mayfield encourages him to remain strong and committed, while questioning her true—but scandalous feelings for him.

I absolutely loved Caleb’s Crossing. Not only is it a touching story of true friendship in the face of danger and adversity. But, it is also a multifaceted love story that pulls its audience into Caleb and Bethia’s tumultuous worlds -- where feelings of hope, resolution, sadness, passion, and shocking tragedy constantly abound. The author’s beautiful, descriptive language of times past, accompanied by several emotion evoking plot twists involving her beloved characters, make Caleb’s Crossing a riveting read that I literally could not put down. Absolutely amazing…

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