Dana, a modern black woman, is celebrating her twenty-sixth birthday with her new husband when she is snatched abruptly from her home in California and transported to the antebellum South. Rufus, the white son of a plantation owner, is drowning, and Dana has been summoned to save him. Dana is drawn back repeatedly through time to the slave quarters, and each time the stay grows longer, more arduous, and more dangerous until it is uncertain whether or not Dana’s life will end, long before it has a chance to begin.
What if you found yourself suddenly transported into the past and you had no control over when you came back? What if the past was so dangerous that you wondered if you would ever come back at all?
In Octavia E. Butler’s historical Sci-Fi novel Kindred, Dana Franklin finds herself falling back in time to the pre-Civil War South. Unable to control or understand what’s going on, Dana is repeatedly pulled into the past and just as inexplicably returned to the present. As an African-American woman, the South holds incredible danger for Dana—danger and death. When Dana meets Rufus, the child of a slaveholder, and Alice, a free black girl, she comes to a shocking realization: Rufus and Alice are her ancestors. Is it Dana’s duty to protect Rufus until he’s old enough to father her great-grandmother? Is that what brings her back into the past?
Kindred is an intense, heart-pounding story that still feels relevant despite its original publication date in 1979. It shatters genre definitions; to confine it to categories like science fiction, historical fiction, African-American fiction or even thriller limits its impact. I couldn’t put this book down, and it stayed with me long after I finished it! Don’t miss out on this amazing classic Sci-Fi novel, or check out the new graphic novel adaptation!