Radio Wolinsky

Ayana Mathis: The Twelve Tribes of Hattie

Ayana Mathis, author of The Twelve Tribes of Hattie, in conversation with Richard Wolinsky. Recorded in January 2013.

The Twelve Tribes of Hattie revolves around the matriarch of a black family of the Great Migration and her children and grandchildren, and was an Oprah Book Club selection. From the New York Times review: “Hattie Shepherd, the title character of Ayana Mathis’s piercing debut novel, is at once a tragic heroine with mythic dimensions and an entirely recognizable mother and wife trying to make ends meet. Her story, set in 20th-century Philadelphia, is one of terrible loss and grief and survival, a story of endurance in the face of disappointment, heartbreak and harrowing adversity.” This was a debut novel.

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