Village Weavers (Hardcover)

Village Weavers By Myriam JA Chancy Cover Image

Village Weavers (Hardcover)


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A TIME Best Book of April

“Chancy is one of our most brilliant writers and storytellers.”—Edwidge Danticat

“Myriam J. A. Chancy is a masterful writer.”—José Olivarez

From award-winning author Myriam J. A. Chancy comes an extraordinary and enduring story of two families—forever joined by country, and by long-held secrets—and two girls with a bond that refuses to be broken.

In 1940s’ Port-au-Prince, Gertie and Sisi become fast childhood friends, despite being on opposite ends of the social and economic ladder. As young girls, they build their unlikely friendship—until a deathbed revelation ripples through their families and tears them apart. After François Duvalier’s rule turns deadly in the 1950s, Sisi moves to Paris, while Gertie marries into a wealthy Dominican family. Across decades and continents, through personal success and failures, they are parted and reunited, slowly learning the truth of their singular relationship. Finally, six decades later, with both women in the United States, a sudden phone call brings them back together once more to reckon with and—perhaps—forgive the past.

Told with power and frankness, Village Weavers confronts the silences around class, race, and nationality, charts the moments when lives are irrevocably forced apart, and envisions two girls—connected their entire lives—who try to break inherited cycles of mistrust and find ways back into each other’s hearts.

Myriam J. A. Chancy is the author of What Storm, What Thunder, awarded an American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation and named a best book of the year by NPR, Kirkus, Chicago Public Library, New York Public Library, the Boston Globe, and the Globe and Mail. Her past novels include The Loneliness of Angels, winner of the Guyana Prize for Literature Caribbean Award; The Scorpion’s Claw; and Spirit of Haiti, short-listed for the Commonwealth Prize. She is a Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and HBA Chair in the Humanities at Scripps College in California.

Product Details ISBN: 9781959030379
ISBN-10: 195903037X
Publisher: Tin House Books
Publication Date: April 2nd, 2024
Pages: 352
Language: English
For fans of Elena Ferrante: Myriam J. A. Chancy’s Village Weavers is a wistful look at a complicated female friendship that spans decades and continents.


— TIME, a Best Book of April

Chancy continues to impress with this character-driven view of Haiti’s turbulent history. . . . Her heartfelt prose lays bare the women’s inner lives, and the story is further enriched by its symbolism.
— Publishers Weekly

Moving. . . . with beautifully fleshed out characters and a bone-deep understanding of the inexorable pull of the past. . . . A powerful novel about lifelong female friendships against a backdrop of political upheaval and family secrets.
— Kirkus Reviews

Powerful. . . . A beautiful narrative, masterfully capturing the unspoken nuances within social structures and in the way families interact with their heritage. A compelling and satisfying read that acknowledges the bitter truths of history and dares to imagine a path forward.
— Booklist

Full of vibrancy, wistfulness and even playfulness, capably portraying the enduring tenacity of women in uncertain times. Reading Chancy’s portrayal of Haiti is a memorable experience—rich with contradictions and complexities, visceral and ever-changing.
— Book Page

Evocative and reflective, Village Weavers is focused on friendship, family and the circumstances that can tear us apart—and bring us back together again.

— Ms. Magazine, A Best Book of April

Myriam J. A. Chancy follows up her illustrious novel, What Storm, What Thunder, with a story about two families caught between the histories that bind them. With Village Weavers, Chancy becomes a cartographer of the human experience as she navigates issues of race, colonialism, diaspora, and the ways we must redefine ourselves later in our lives. It is a testament to the capacity of the human heart, one that is capable of loving, of yearning and rage, and of living. Chancy pays homage to those estranged and passed as she brilliantly maps out a journey of reclamation. This is a defining work of impressive accomplishment. In the same way Jamaica Kincaid’s Annie John or Toni Morrison’s Sula announced before it, Chancy teaches us that it is never too late to reconnect with those we care about, to remember the power of love.

— Xavier Navarro Aquino, author of Velorio

Myriam J.A. Chancy's Village Weavers is a mesmerizing tale of two young girls, Gertie and Sisi, whose tender relationship is fractured by powerful forces around them—much like Hispaniola, the island they are from. As the young girls become women, we witness Chancy's radiant ability to wrestle with history, class, colorism, and racism, while telling a story that is deeply rooted in love. What the novel ultimately reaches toward, both on a personal and political level, is profoundly moving.

— Cleyvis Natera, author of Neruda on the Park

A deeply reflective book about the resilience of the relationship between two women, which evolves from an innocent childhood friendship to a spiritual kinship that transcends the biology of blood relation. Village Weavers is a loving portrait of sisterhood, carefully and skillfully woven. A pleasure to read. A deeply reflective book about the resilience of the relationship between two women, which evolves from an innocent childhood friendship to a spiritual kinship that transcends the biology of blood relation. Village Weavers is a loving portrait of sisterhood, carefully and skillfully woven. A pleasure to read.

— Cherie Jones, author of How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House

Just beautiful! Village Weavers is love story for our times and for all time. In Sisi and Gertie we recognise the timeless tale of a family torn apart by the forces of history but in Chancy’s hands it feels new, fresh and uniquely their own. Spanning Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Paris, Florida, Arizona and back again, this is a true Diaspora story—frankly told and sharply contemporary—that speaks into the silences around race, class, colour and the myths of nationhood, while affirming that no matter how far we are drawn apart it is the sea, the sea that holds us together.

— Ayanna Lloyd Banwo, author of When We Were Birds