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The Vanishing Half: A Novel

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Brit Bennett

Narrated By: Shayna Small

Date: June 2020

Duration: 11 hours 34 minutes

Summary:

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

ONE OF BARACK OBAMA'S FAVORITE BOOKS OF THE YEAR

NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2020 BY THE NEW YORK TIMES * THE WASHINGTON POST * NPR * PEOPLE * TIME MAGAZINE* VANITY FAIR * GLAMOUR 



“Bennett’s tone and style recalls James Baldwin and Jacqueline Woodson, but it’s especially reminiscent of Toni Morrison’s 1970 debut novel, The Bluest Eye.” —Kiley Reid, Wall Street Journal 

“A story of absolute, universal timelessness …For any era, it's an accomplished, affecting novel. For this moment, it's piercing, subtly wending its way toward questions about who we are and who we want to be….” – Entertainment Weekly



From The New York Times-bestselling author of The Mothers, a stunning new novel about twin sisters, inseparable as children, who ultimately choose to live in two very different worlds, one black and one white.

The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it's not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it's everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Many years later, one sister lives with her black daughter in the same southern town she once tried to escape. The other secretly passes for white, and her white husband knows nothing of her past. Still, even separated by so many miles and just as many lies, the fates of the twins remain intertwined. What will happen to the next generation, when their own daughters' storylines intersect?

Weaving together multiple strands and generations of this family, from the Deep South to California, from the 1950s to the 1990s, Brit Bennett produces a story that is at once a riveting, emotional family story and a brilliant exploration of the American history of passing. Looking well beyond issues of race, The Vanishing Half considers the lasting influence of the past as it shapes a person's decisions, desires, and expectations, and explores some of the multiple reasons and realms in which people sometimes feel pulled to live as something other than their origins.

As with her New York Times-bestselling debut The Mothers, Brit Bennett offers an engrossing page-turner about family and relationships that is immersive and provocative, compassionate and wise.

Genres:

  • Gina M.

    Boring! Same old tired story. Black, white, male, female, gay, rich, poor, beautiful, ugly, healthy, sick .... accept yourself, don’t lie, be kind! I fast forwarded through this after 3/4ths. Very tedious.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful.

  • Charlene C.

    This was a POWERFUL story! Leaves you with much to think about.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Hailey Moen

    The Vanishing Half was a really awesome book Britt Bennett did a really nice job with the character development along with transitioning between the different eras along with the flash backs. I also really liked how it talked about major issues like abuse, racism, segregation, just to name a few. It really opened my eyes and me feel more educated. Shayna Small did an awesome job with the narrating. She kept it very interesting by doing accents with different characters to make them come to life. Would highly recommend this book!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    A well constructed read. I particularly appreciated the use of overlapping time lines woven together to create the story. It worked well in driving the separate but related narratives.

  • Bradley A.

    eh itsigh

  • Debra M.

    Excellent book

  • Anonymous

    Carefully done and thought-provoking. This book deftly tells an intergenerational story about making hard decisions, family, crafting your life. Each place and character are believable and brought to life further by the narrator. I agree with some others that it began a little slow, picked up quite a bit, and then ended in a way that was realistic but kind of left you wanting more of the characters lives. I see why this one has made such a splash, it's excellent.

  • Anonymous

    Started slow but picked up. Character development was exceptional, narration made it extra good. I was stuck in it until the end.

  • Deb B.

    I loved this book. There were so many levels of hiding, secrets, facades. I couldn't stop reading it.

  • Anonymous

    I do not see what all the hype was about. I did not enjoy this book at all. It was slow and one of my least favorite books that I have ever read. I would not recommend it.

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by Brit Bennett

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