Book Review: Queen Sugar

Author: Natalie Baszile
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN: 670026131
Genre: Fiction
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Queen Sugar is the book I didn’t expect to love. The title made me feel like it was gonna be a slave narrative (because “sugar”), and y’all know how I feel about those. But instead, it was a compelling narrative of a woman who left California to work on an inherited farm in Louisiana. What seemed impossible in the beginning becomes the kind of hard work she looks forward to, with her Motley crew of sugar cane elders, farmers, and other workers. Somehow Natalie Baszile made the story of sugar cane farming interesting. She mixed it with some family drama: an angsty pre-teen daughter, a self-righteous brother, and a cantankerous grandmother. Perhaps it’s the balancing of all these elements that I find so compelling. This book is heartwarming and full of plot. The pages almost turn themselves. I love the writing, the pacing, the characters. I hate conflict (which is weird because I love fiction and conflict is often its driving force) and this book is full of it, but I was never turned off by it. I definitely found myself screaming out loud at the characters and becoming emotionally invested in the outcome. I definitely recommend you read this book because it is awesome in every possible way.