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Speak Right On

A book is usually a one-sided affair: only the author reveals her thoughts and feelings. The airing of readers’ reactions typically is left to book groups. But not now, not here.

With this blog I want to hear what you have to say. Though I will use Speak Right On as a springboard and reference point for my blog entries, you don’t need to read my book to join the conversation.

Just speak right on, from the heart.

“He who does his best for his own time, lives for all times.”

African proverb

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Front Street Review

By Sabrina Williams 

Mary E. Neighbour has picked up where history leaves off … [with] such a skill for breathing life into characters, the reader sees through the eyes of Dred Scott as if reading from Scott's own journal. Had he been literate, Scott himself could have written the book as an autobiography. It is both a celebration of tradition and family, and an outlet of mourning of lost love and freedom.… 

As the book progresses, the author moves back and forth between Scott's words and the elaboration of a narrator. The two flow so smoothly together the reader really doesn't notice the transition between the two. The reader has no trouble at all deciphering the slang and vernacular that would have been used during the time period. It is difficult to distinguish between fact and fiction, which shows that Neighbor has proficiently fused them together to create the image of one man's experiences…. 

The reader is not spared from the injustices slaves endured. Brutal beatings, rapes, and torture are woven in to the chapters as they would have been in Scott's daily life. Neighbour provides some relief in the form of Gran, Scott's grounding force and mentor. … 

The reader will be surprised to find this is Neighbour's debut novel, as the writing style is that of an accomplished author with years of experience and published works. Not surprisingly, her short fiction has won numerous awards. In SPEAK RIGHT ON, she has given voice to an inanimate name in the pages of history. Through her words, the reader becomes privy to the thoughts and emotions of an historical icon. History truly comes alive, thanks to Mary E. Neighbour.

Book Pleasures
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