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Dream Country: Book summary and reviews of Dream Country by Shannon Gibney

Dream Country

by Shannon Gibney

Dream Country by Shannon Gibney X
Dream Country by Shannon Gibney
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2018
    368 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

The heartbreaking story of five generations of young people from a single African-and-American family pursuing an elusive dream of freedom.

Dream Country begins in suburban Minneapolis at the moment when seventeen-year-old Kollie Flomo begins to crack under the strain of his life as a Liberian refugee. He's exhausted by being at once too black and not black enough for his African American peers and worn down by the expectations of his own Liberian family and community. When his frustration finally spills into violence and his parents send him back to Monrovia to reform school, the story shifts. Like Kollie, readers travel back to Liberia, but also back in time, to the early twentieth century and the point of view of Togar Somah, an eighteen-year-old indigenous Liberian on the run from government militias that would force him to work the plantations of the Congo people, descendants of the African American slaves who colonized Liberia almost a century earlier. When Togar's section draws to a shocking close, the novel jumps again, back to America in 1827, to the children of Yasmine Wright, who leave a Virginia plantation with their mother for Liberia, where they're promised freedom and a chance at self-determination by the American Colonization Society. The Wrights begin their section by fleeing the whip and by its close, they are then the ones who wield it. With each new section, the novel uncovers fresh hope and resonating heartbreak, all based on historical fact.

In Dream Country, Shannon Gibney spins a riveting tale of the nightmarish spiral of death and exile connecting America and Africa, and of how one determined young dreamer tries to break free and gain control of her destiny.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

Starred Review. A necessary reckoning." - Kirkus

Starred Review. Gibney blesses the reader with a marvelous literary tapestry of family, sacrifice, and dreams examining the lingering effects of slavery and racism in both the U.S. and Liberia. " - Booklist

Starred Review. [H]ighlights the inconsistencies between the beliefs a country projects to the world at large and the realities experienced by immigrants... An excellent choice." - School Library Journal

"[A]n illumination of how humans end up treating each other cruelly and how they resist." - The Horn Book

"Gut wrenching and incredible." - Sabaa Tahir #1 New York Times bestselling author of An Ember in the Ashes

"This novel is a remarkable achievement." - Kelly Barnhill, New York Times bestselling author and Newbery medalist

"Beautifully epic." - Ibi Zoboi, author American Street and National Book Award finalist

The information about Dream Country shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Shannon Gibney

Shannon Gibney is an author and university professor. Her novel See No Color, drawn from her life as a transracial adoptee, won the Minnesota Book Award and was hailed by Kirkus Reviews as "an exceptionally accomplished debut" and by Publishers Weekly as "an unflinching look at the complexities of racial identity." Her essay "Fear of a Black Mother" appears in the anthology A Good Time for the Truth. She lives with her two Liberian-American children in Minneapolis, Minnesota. www.shannongibney.com.

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