The Vanishing Half


Author: Brit Bennett

9780349701479 | PB | pp. 384 | 2021 | ‎ Dialogue Books

The Vanishing Half is a story about two identical twins which explores the impact of the past and race on personality, experiences and relationships.

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The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it’s not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it’s everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Ten years later, one sister lives with her black daughter in the same southern town she once tried to escape. The other secretly passes for white, and her white husband knows nothing of her past. Still, even separated by so many miles and just as many lies, the fates of the twins remain intertwined. What will happen to the next generation, when their own daughters’ story lines intersect?

Weaving together multiple strands and generations of this family, from the Deep South to California, from the 1950s to the 1990s, Brit Bennett produces a story that is at once a riveting, emotional family story and a brilliant exploration of the American history of passing. Looking well beyond issues of race, The Vanishing Half considers the lasting influence of the past as it shapes a person’s decisions, desires, and expectations, and explores some of the multiple reasons and realms in which people sometimes feel pulled to live as something other than their origins.

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Brit Bennett




‎ Dialogue Books





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About the Author

The author wrote the New York Times bestselling novel The Mothers. She was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize for the best first book, the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction and the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award; and a National Book Foundation 5 under 35 honoree. Her work has been featured in the New Yorker, New York Times Magazine, Paris Review and Jezebel.


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