In this award-winning, bestselling work of fiction that moves between Haiti in the s and New York in the present day, we meet an unusual man who is. Download Citation on ResearchGate | On Jan 1, , Kyle Minor and others published The Dew Breaker. Read "The Dew Breaker" by Edwidge Danticat available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first purchase. We meet him late in life: a quiet.
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The Dew Breaker. Home · The Dew Breaker Author: Danticat Edwidge The False Inspector Dew. Read more · Silver Dew · Read more · The False Inspector . The Dew Breaker. Edwidge Danticat. New York: Knopf, Christopher Winks. Since the appearance of her debut novel Breath, Eyes, Memory. Edwidge Danticat. A scarred Brooklyn resident remembers his past life as a Haitian torturer in the s, a period during which he waged personal and political battles before moving to New York, where his past continues to haunt him. Add tags for "The dew breaker".
In other words, she wants to show trauma as it is experienced. This book handles trauma the way it is experienced, and that is saying something. This book is like a puzzle and frequently, the stories seem disjointed, barely connected, except for the three chapters about Anne and her family. I had thought about being a missionary in my early twenties, but this visit convinced me that that was not the life for me. View 1 comment. Edwidge Danticat. Readers Also Enjoyed.
The first story starts with the Dew Breaker in the states and the last story ends with the Dew Breaker, and what exactly he did in Haiti. The stories come together like the joined pieces of a puzzle and give a glimpse of the current and in some cases past lives of these people.
Love and hope, remorse and the compromises many have to make to find and go on living a life after they have lost so much. Touching and profound, will be reading more from Danticat. View all 22 comments. Oct 25, Maxwell rated it liked it Shelves: Each part could be read as its own short story, and I vacillate between liking and disliking this structure. Usually I'd enjoy something like this, but the stories are at times so loosely connected that it's hard to see the bigger picture.
And yet, part of me likes the way the author drops information ever so carefully, that it makes a sort of puzzle out of the reading. Regardless, the stories are beautifully written and tragically told. You get 3. You get an on-the-ground look at life in Haiti as well as the lives of Haitian immigrants.
All of this frames the story of one man—the dew breaker—who we come to know by the end as a tortured and incomprehensible figure. I held off reviewing it because the story was so disjointed for me. I tried to go back and reread a bit of it, then tried to read each vignette separately, but neither really worked for me. I clearly did not like this book as much as others did.
I just felt that each story meandered along, with a couple sentences relating back to the general premise of the book. This book was hard for me to pick back up and complete. Story line is a man with a deep 3 stars Finished this book earlier in the month. Story line is a man with a deep dark disturbing secret. Relates to his past in Haiti, but story now takes place in New York. The best I can assume was that his horrific past was contrasted with his present and the people who were presently in his life.
View 1 comment. Mar 23, Kathleen rated it liked it Shelves: Danticat's most persuasive, organic performance yet The nine short stories are like windows giving me glimpses of life in Haiti during the s and the Haitian communities and people in New York City in the early s. It 'opened my eyes' to the unrest, uncertainties, horrors and tortures that took place in Haiti. This quote from the back cover of the book sums it up for me, "Edwidge Danticat's brilliant exploration of the "dew breaker"-or torturer-is an unforgettable story of love, remorse, and hope; of personal and political rebellions; and of the compromises we make to move beyond the most intimate brushes with history.
View all 8 comments. Jan 02, Debra rated it really liked it. Forgive me for what I am saying. Read it It is a Creole nickname for torturer. This book is a combination of short st 3. This book is a combination of short stories that move between Haiti and the United States. I did not really know about the novel being made up of short stories when I chose to read this book, so as I was reading, I thought "Wait, What?
Who is this person? The book begins with Ka, an artist who sculpts a sculpture of her father.
As they are taking a road trip to deliver the sculpture, she learns the truth about her father. She believed her father to be a quiet man who was once tortured in prison. He is now a father, husband, landlord and barber.
But he has a dark secret - he is not the man she thinks he is. He was not a prisoner but a "hunter" and the prisoners were his "prey.
As the book goes on, we meet other characters who have ties to Haiti who in some way have a connection to each other. The chapters are: The short stories are about coming characters traveling from Haiti to America. They tell tales of oppression, family, redemption and heartache.
There is also resiliency to the tales. No matter what the characters have gone through, they try to keep going, to make a way for themselves. They show hope and a need to create new lives for themselves. See more of my reviews at www.
Jan 21, Olivia rated it it was amazing Shelves: The Dew Breaker is a book organized into 9 sections chapters , which are all perfectly able to stand alone as short stories. The book is just as much about his life an The Dew Breaker is a book organized into 9 sections chapters , which are all perfectly able to stand alone as short stories.
Out of all the chapters, my personal favorite was Water Child. Arguably, it has the least to contribute to the overall plot, but I really enjoyed the character Nadine and all her emotional intricacies. When I read the last page of the chapter, I burst out into tears. I spent a good half-hour or more once I finished the book, just lying on my bed and trying to pin him down. Uncle Gunnysack narrates a good portion of the last chapter, and just reading that much makes me sick.
He seems to have no morals, no conscience… Although the last chapter does help to explain his odd behavior in the beginning. I love the short story format. I love it. As an aspiring writer, I feel a bit intimidated by it, though. Some of the symbolism is a little heavy-handed at times there is a character who is a mother figure in the valley where she lives in Haiti, and she also happens to be a midwife , but I have literally no other complaint about this book.
It was such an enjoyable read, and there was never a dull moment! I would highly recommend this book to just about everyone. The plot s was engaging, the characters realistic, and when everything comes together in the end, it just sort of blows your mind.
It blew mine, at least. View 2 comments. Dec 29, Isa rated it really liked it. Mar 09, Libby rated it really liked it. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
The sculpture she creates represents her idea of who her father had been as a prisoner. When they are taking the sculpture to a renowned Haitian actress who lives in Florida, the father disappears. When he resurfaces, the sculpture is gone. He tells his daughter he is not worthy of the sculpture, and for the first time in her life, she learns who her father really is.
He confesses that he had been the hunter, not the prey. He has nightmares about his time in Haiti. Maybe he dreams of dipping his hands in the sand on a beach in his own country and finding that what he comes up with is a fistful of blood. Anne is devout and believes in miracles. She frequently shares stories of miracles with her family. While attending church, the family thinks they recognize Emmanuel Constant. His picture is posted on fliers stapled to lampposts along the street.
This book is like a puzzle and frequently, the stories seem disjointed, barely connected, except for the three chapters about Anne and her family. I found myself paying close attention, turning the puzzle pieces every which way, trying to jam them into my way of thinking, and sometimes becoming frustrated at my attempts to create connections.
I did draw some conclusions. It is graphic and horrific. I wondered if Danticat was trying to say that it is context more than choice that make people who they are.
This is not a book for people who like straightforward plots, and I have to admit, that sometimes, I also like straightforward books. But, I am not opposed to books that make me want to dig a little for the deeper meanings, and this is a book like that. The wife in this story has come to live with her husband in New York. They separated right after their wedding and he has been working two jobs in New York, saving for her to come and live with him.
While he is at work, she listens to a talk show on the radio and the callers are talking about Patrick Dorismond, who was an unarmed Haitian.
He was shot and killed by a police officer, also a true event that occurred on March 16, We helped paint a church and visited an orphanage. It was such a beautiful country. I had no idea of its history of violence, nor was any apparent while I was there. There were lots of churches and many devoted to Christianity. We rode in tap taps, colorfully painted trucks, and visited a market, where many wooden bowls and vases were crafted.
Meat hung out in the open air, with flies buzzing around. Many beggars approached us while we were at the market. I had thought about being a missionary in my early twenties, but this visit convinced me that that was not the life for me.
They would have been my teachers. Mar 10, Irene rated it really liked it. These are interconnected stories which revolve around a former Haitian torturer now living a quiet life in the United States, his former identity known only to his wife.
The characterizations were fantastic. The experiences of Haitians living through a brutal dictatorship and its aftermath in exile was powerfully conveyed. View all 4 comments.
Aug 13, Brian Sweany rated it really liked it. Each chapter is a self-contained story, with divergent and seemingly random settings--Haiti in the dictatorial s, Manhattan in the s, Brooklyn and Queens in the 21st century. And yet slowly, irrevocably, the reader is drawn into the shared love, the shared remorse, the shared history, the shared hope, the shared rebellions--both personal and political--that circle round this unassuming man I have a confession to make.
Three-quarters of the way into the book I thought I was going to write about a 3-star review. Danticat's prose.
Maybe this isn't a book for everyone The narrator, Robin Miles, is an extraordinary talent. This book. This fantastic gem of a book. This little book containing an abundance of talent is one of the best books I've read this year. This book handles trauma the way it is experienced, and that is saying something. This is a collection of short stories that are not overtly complex or long, yet, Danticat is able to weave a story through each story, thus, connecting them all together.
The messages she sends to the reader are not told to you directly and this is very crucial to the story. You This book. You see, The Dew Breaker involves a set of characters who are of Haitian heritage. So the history of Haiti is intrinsically involved in this novel. A gigantic part of Haitian history is the brutal dictatorship and the effects it had on the people. This is the centre focus of the novel, and yet, due to Danticat's impressive writing style, it's not explicitly stated.
One part of her writing style makes reference to how Haitian writers had to write in order to not get into trouble. In order to live as a writer during censorship, one had to write in subtext. Nothing can be put bluntly and this is what Danticat follows as a nod towards the extreme level of censorship in Haiti. What's interesting is Danticat's position. American history regarding Haiti puts Danticat in a difficult spot as she has the ability to write about her native country from a position of safety is what caused so much trauma in her home country.
In this novel, Danticat wants to show history of violence and trauma in an oblique way. She wants to show the shadow it casts rather then the direct problem.
In other words, she wants to show trauma as it is experienced. Any kind of trauma. The truth is, a person cannot sit down and tell you their entire life story from start to finish.
They are not a life journey book, they are human and Danticat shows this throughout her book. She also shows how history is more cyclical over linear. Past events carry over and on the individual level it carries from generation to generation. May 28, Savvy rated it really liked it. Agony and Atonement The Dew Breaker is my first taste of the gift of storytelling by Edwidge Danticat As the novel opens, revealing shocking secrets of the past, it's clear that the reader will not be disappointed.
They would often come in the early dawn to take their victims away Beautifully written, the chapters overlap and wind back around each other as the novel slowly reveals the ghosts of the past within the culture's stories of miracles and spiritual beliefs.
Now, living in New York, trying to erase a past that shadows him continually, we meet a good father and husband with a horrible scar on his face and an agonizing secret embedded deeply in his soul Mar 19, Big Lou's Book Reviews rated it it was amazing. This is because throughout the book several characters move from Haiti to America and have to find their place in society.
Additionally, people struggling with their cultural identity, in general, can benefit from reading The Dew Breaker. The reader can apply lessons learned by the characters in the book into their own life. The Dew Breaker can be used in a scholastic setting or for a casual reader looking for insight into a culture. Some of the limitations The Dew Breaker has is the lack of depth between the short stories. Edwidge Danticat uses various distinct stories in order to attempt to give the reader insight into Haitian culture.
In using many different short stories, Danticat leaves many questions unanswered and unsolved. For example, in the chapter Night Talkers, Dany is faced with the problem of never being able to tell his Aunt Estina that he knows the person who killed his parents and blinded her. Dany was never able to tell his Aunt Estina the information he knows because his aunt died in her sleep the day before Dany planned on telling her the news. After the chapter is over, it is never made clear how Dany fully copes with the situation and whether or not he confronts his family's murderer.
Danticat writes from the perspective of many different characters, making the book unique in the way it is written. At first glance, the book may seem to not make sense, but all the stories are intertwined to make the greater story. Having the reader arrange the different pieces of the puzzle makes The Dew Breaker a true masterpiece. I felt as if the short stories simply did not make sense and were not connected.
The most important lesson I took from this book is the power of forgiveness. Jun 09, AC rated it it was amazing Shelves: An outstanding collection of 9 short stories, with characters and events intertwined like Sherwood Anderson's "Winesburg, Ohio" , and revolving around the Tonton Macoute in Haiti and in the Haitian diaspora.
Despite its grim backdrop, Danticat writes beautifully and with great sensitivity and with human understanding. Highly recommended! Jun 14, billyskye rated it really liked it. This is a terrific book. The Dew Breaker reminds me of The Things They Carried , but centers on Haitian expats coping with haunting reverberations of the Duvalier regime instead of on American veterans living with memories of the war in Vietnam.
The writing is lovely. The characters well-imagined and heartbreaking. The stories are loosely but masterfully connected. Together they flesh out a world that is much greater than the sum of its parts.
Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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