• Daughters of the Dust

  • A Gullah-Geechee Novel
  • By: Julie Dash
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 15 hrs and 20 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (39 ratings)

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Daughters of the Dust  By  cover art

Daughters of the Dust

By: Julie Dash
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
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Publisher's Summary

Drawing from the magical world of her iconic Sundance award-winning film, Julie Dash’s stand-alone novel tells another rich, historical tale of the Gullah-Geechee people: a multigenerational story about a Brooklyn College anthropology student who finds an unexpected homecoming when she heads to the South Carolina Sea Islands to study her ancestors.

Set in the 1920s in the Sea Islands off the Carolina coast where the Gullah-Geechee people have preserved much of their African heritage and language, Daughters of the Dust chronicles the lives of the Peazants, a large, proud family who trace their origins to the Ibo, who were enslaved and brought to the islands more than 100 years earlier.

Native New Yorker and anthropology student Amelia Peazant has always known about her grandmother and mother’s homeland of Dawtuh Island, though she’s never understood why her family remains there, cut off from modern society. But when an opportunity arises for Amelia to head to the island to study her ancestry for her thesis, she is surprised by what she discovers. From her multigenerational clan she gathers colorful stories, learning about "the first man and woman", the slaves who walked across the water back home to Africa, the ways men and women need each other, and the intermingling of African and Native American cultures. The more she learns, the more Amelia comes to treasure her family and their traditions, discovering an especially strong kinship with her fiercely independent cousin, Elizabeth. Eyes opened to an entirely new world, Amelia must decide what’s next for her and find her role in the powerful legacy of her people.

Daughters of the Dust is a vivid novel that blends folktales, history, and anthropology to tell a powerful and emotional story of homecoming, the reclamation of cultural heritage, and the enduring bonds of family.

©2021 Julie Dash (P)2021 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"In its beautiful storytelling and richly cultural sense of place and time, Daughters of the Dust the novel meets the high standards of Daughters of the Dust the film...giving us the stuff we've clamored for since the first hypnotic images flickered across movie screens - more, more, more." (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

"Elegantly combines sultry descriptions with evocations of oral tradition, cultural theory with a sincere reverence for Gullah esthetics and experience." (The New York Times Book Review)

"Comes alive in the anecdotes told in the dialect of the many marvelously varied characters and in its descriptions of the overwhelming beauty of the Geechee language and the lushness of the land." (Washington Post Book World

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Love it

Great storyline. The Bonnie T does such a great job bringing characters through life. A new fave.

2 people found this helpful

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Amazing!

I’ve listened to the book over and over. The storyline is fascinating and the narrator does a great job bringing the characters to life.

1 person found this helpful

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A Good Listen

I enjoyed every word. The story was told well and the descriptive details gave me a clear picture of the people, their time and their trials and joys.

The narrator impressed me with her ability to distinguish the many male and female characters.

1 person found this helpful

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Thank you

Great Book! Found my ancestry line on St Helena Island. So thankful for the insight on the lifestyle my family lived.

1 person found this helpful

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Island life

This is a wonderful book. I learned about how blacks were treated in the south. Education was limited and not encouraged by the whites. When Elizabeth does a good job as the teacher and teaches extra things she is reprimanded. The family ties are strong. The culture has lasted because the blacks are isolated on a few islands.

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Captivating

Anytime a book enable me to see the characters and their surroundings in my mind its a good book!😃