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Reviewed by Alice DiNizo for Readers' Favorite
It is 2002 and Randy Lafitte is the twice-elected governor of Louisiana. As nice as he would like his life portrayed, it is anything but under the surface, for he is a racist, hateful, and not above calling for help from those who live on the edge of society. The Lafitte family is an old Louisiana family that is haunted by a ghost story dated back in history to Melinda Lafitte and her lover Isaac and the huge old oak tree fronting the Lafitte estate. There are those who feel the curse brought on Lafitte's son Kristopher's death, for Kristopher is killed accidentally by his best friend, African-American Lincoln Baker. Lincoln's father figure, Moses, and his adopted brother, Brandon Mouton, try to protect Randy's daughter, Karen, and prevent violence while Moses' childhood friend Malcolm Wright, or Panama X, promotes black supremacy and is against "the system in this country made for the black man to fail." And Jhonnette Deveaux, daughter of the voodoo queen that Randy Lafitte sought out years before, works her healing powers as Randy's men and Panama X's forces converge violently on the local hospital. Will burning the old oak tree, Melinda Weeps, on Lafitte property end the violence as Louisiana black men fight against the racist powers that hold them back? Read and decide for yourself.
"One Blood" is brilliantly written and edited as author Amaru testifies to all the many people who helped him create this powerful novel. The suspense of whether Lincoln, Brandon, Karen and the other major characters will survive will engross the reader to the very last page of this story. The plot line switches back and forth between 2002 and the 1990's, and this only adds to the story's complexities.
The subplot of Moses, Malcolm and Walter Simmons' friendship adds to the storyline. Moses goes to jail while Malcolm and Walter get involved in the Civil Rights Movement. Lincoln Baker's life as an abandoned child taken in by Moses is another effective part of this good story. This book should be read by all and given a place of honor in modern fiction.