When I got to the house, Claire was dutifully eating her cereal. Emma sat in her chair sucking on a strand of her stringy hair. "Someone forgot to feed me breakfast," she choked.
"I'd like some now," I said. "Would you rather I ate here with you, so we could talk about our day, or should I take the tray out to the porch, where there is peace and quiet?"
"Here," Emma said. "Could I please have something to eat?"
"Certainly." I smiled a tight, close-lipped smile at my reformed daughter. Welcome back, I wanted to say. We will tread so carefully, so lightly, so you will not go off again.
"Tell me," she said, "exactly what the plan is."
Excerpted from A Map of the World by Jane Hamilton. Copyright© 1994 by Jane Hamilton. Excerpted by permission of Anchor, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
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