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Publisher's Summary

A new edition of this award-winning modern classic, with a new introduction

In 1958 Georgia, the shade of a 13-year-old black girl's skin can make the difference in her fate. Tangy Mae is the smartest of her mother's 10 children, but she is also the darkest complected. The Quinns - all different skin shades, all with unknown fathers - live with their charismatic, beautiful, and tyrannical mother, Rozelle, in poverty on the fringes of a Georgia town where Jim Crow rules.

Rozelle's children live in fear of her mood swings and her violence, but they are devoted to her. Rozelle pulls her children out of school when they are 12 years old so that they can help support her by going to work - as domestics, as field laborers, or down at "the farmhouse", where Rozelle takes her oldest daughters to turn tricks for her.

Tangy Mae has been offered the opportunity to apply to an integrated high school and might even have the chance to graduate if she can somehow avoid her sisters' fate. Can she break from Rozelle's grasp without violent - even fatal - consequences?

©2004 Delores Phillips (P)2018 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wow

What a story! I want more, but the author is deceased. Excellent performance by Bahni Turpin.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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My heart couldn't take it

If you could sum up The Darkest Child in three words, what would they be?

Never knew I could feel so deeply for fictional characters. Beautiful Heart-aching story line. Some days, I didn't know if I could continue after every heart-yearning tale, but I had to finish. By far one of my new favs!

What did you like best about this story?

The details, the way it was written. It all was so poetic and well told.

What about Bahni Turpin’s performance did you like?

I love her dedication to each one of the characters. Her voice was a pleasure to listen too. Only she could deliver their heartbreaking stories with a voice that soothed you as it told tales of dark times.

If you could take any character from The Darkest Child out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Tangie May, her composure throughout the story amazed me. I would love to meet her and look her in her eyes. I could only imagine if hers were my own.

Any additional comments?

Cant wait for #2. Thank you Phillips for telling this story, it needed to be heard. best & light -J

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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This story still blows me away!

I first read this book when it was released 10 years ago. It was a page turner and I have recommended it over the years. Dolores Phillips captures the pain, suffering and triumph of Tangie May and her family in a way that you never forget the Quinns. Bhani Turpin’s narration is wonderful and allowed me to experience this novel in a totally different way. Such an amazing work of literature!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Wow!!!

I read the reviews for this book and one just said WOW and I truly think that sums it up!I cried and laughed but I mostly just said wow !

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great Book

Loved this book. It will break your heart. I didn't want it to end and then they gave you a teaser for a 2nd book but I couldn't find it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Kept my attention from beginning to the end!

I loved the turns the book took in the story line and the way the author allowed you to get to know each character in the book. I'm from South Carolina and so much of this was familiar. This was long before my time but not far from a lot of the stories I've been told by my mother and father.

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A Must Read!

The narrator, Bahni Turpin, is one of my favorites. She really makes this book come to life. I listened to this whole book a long road trip...to and from. It made the trip seem much shorter. Great book, especially if you know a real person like the mother in this book.

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First Novel

This is the authors first novel. The story is full of traumatic events. None of which move the story along. The story reads almost as if the author chronicled the most horrific events form the childhoods of her family members. There were areas of character identities that where underdeveloped. I didn’t understand the protagonist anymore by the end of the novel as I did in the beginning. By the end, I found myself disliking the protagonist. Primary because the ‘sins’ she’s commits are with out purpose or retribution.

I wish the author would have created a identity for the protagonist outside of the experiences of others. Situations occurred that directly impacted others, retribution ricocheted on to her; she collected the rem-nits. An identity development out of her pain would have been better than the identity this novel leaves me believing her to have.

Due to the historic realities mentioned in the novels, I would have liked to read/hear about countering and realistic positions on those realities. The positions presented feel passive and sugar-coated. Some of the situations or circumstances that the protagonist finds her self in can only occur in the time period this story is placed in.

I will read the others, I hope to connect with the protagonist in a way I didn’t in this novel.

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I loved it

Very Sorry to hear of the authors passing. I want to hear more. My condolences.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Riveting read!

This book was a study in generational dysfunction and mental illness. It highlights the importance of the mother child relationship in the family.