If you’re looking for a twist of genre, this is the right book for you. It gets its style from the self-help books which are popular among youths around “rising Asia”. What is fascinating about this book is you will not learn the character’s names. You will never know the main character’s profession - how exactly he gets rich in “rising Asia”. You will not even become aware of what Asian country the book is set in. However, Mohsin Hamid's style keeps you reading. The entire book is written in second person, so it takes you aback since it seems to be talking about you. Without knowing specifics, the author takes you through 8 decades of the main character’s life in 228 pages. The book seems to be both specific & broad at the same time (if that even seems possible).
The author, Sue Monk Kidd, adds fictional dimensions to the history of the Grimkes. Through these fictional accounts, we learn a lot about actual history. We become acquainted with the relationships between children slaves & plantation owners’ children, religious dynamics of the era, family relationships, the lives of slaves and the abolitionist movement as the story progresses. The plot, while slow to start, really picks up momentum about halfway through.