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Publisher's Summary

What does it mean when the man who wrote the Declaration of Independence is your father and also your slave master? Beverly, Harriet, Madison, and Eston are Thomas Jefferson’s children, but their mother is a slave, so they must keep their father’s identity secret. They get special treatment - better work, better shoes, even violin lessons - but they are still slaves. Their father has promised to set them all free when each turns 21. Some of them are light-skinned enough that they will be able to enter white society - and thereby turn their backs on home forever. Others won’t have that option. So just what did their father mean when he wrote all men are created equal?

Told in three parts from the points of view of three of Jefferson’s slaves - Beverly, Madison, and a third boy close to the Hemings family - these engaging and poignant voices shed light on what life was like as one of Thomas Jefferson’s invisible offspring.

©2011 Kimberly Bradley (P)2011 Listening Library

Critic Reviews

“A big, serious work of historical investigation and imagination; the tale has never before been told this well.” (Kirkus, starred review)

“Bradley’s fine characterization and cinematic prose breathe life into this tragic story.” (School Library Journal, starred review)

“Bradley’s sensitive and richly imagined vision pays respect to those who struggled for lives of stability and dignity, even as the whims and fortunes of the Jeffersons shifted beneath them.” (Bulletin of the Center for Childrens Books, starred review)

What listeners say about Jefferson's Sons

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A Great Read

I thought this was a great book. this book gives one an insight on what had occurred as well as the longing for a father. which killed my heart how much his kids really loved him no matter what..

4 people found this helpful

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Fantastic Book!

What did you love best about Jefferson's Sons?

This is a story as true as the author could have possibly written. It took me back to a time and place so different from all I have ever known. I learned a lot from this book. A great story. My kids ages 13 and 6 really enjoyed this book as well.

Adenrele Ojo did a great job narrating this book.

Which character – as performed by Adenrele Ojo – was your favorite?

Mama

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

4 people found this helpful

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Good but...

This was a good book, but for younger people it was harder to read, at least for me. It was a good story line and i in courage you to read it!!

2 people found this helpful

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A good read

I thought this book was a good read/listen. The orator did a great job. The story unfolded nicely. I would recommend this book to someone interested in historic fiction.

1 person found this helpful

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Fantastic

I laughed, I cried. Do yourself a favor and buy this book. I have never before read a book from the perspective of a child slave. It was both enlightening and heartbreaking to listen.

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Wonderful story, truly inspired

I love the narration of all the many characters , leaves me wanting more details about all the characters. Truly enjoyed this book.

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A complex story beautifully explained.

We listened to Jefferson's Sons as a family. Our son is 10 years old. We loved it! Great for long trips or family time. As a librarian, I recommend that anyone under 12 years old listen to it with an adult.

It is a "must" read!

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A must read!

A must read for the young and old with excellent narration. It was trully captivating.

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Excellent read

This was my first Audible book and I felt like I was cheating on reading. However, hearing the words cause this story to resonate more with my spirit. Thinking of what slaves went through and more particular the complex dynamic and emotions felt by the master’s children with slave children really peaked my interest. Definitely recommend this story.

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Jefferson's sons

Best book to the year. I well always love the book. Red ti so men's time