By Linda Tate
“I think Power in the Blood is a remarkable memoir, honestly and beautifully written despite the painful nature of some of the material. This is a big, human, and entirely revelatory book: it shows us all just how these things can happen, and how they can continue to happen down through generations. Linda Tate doesn’t really lay blame or make judgments; she shows real wisdom and compassion throughout.“
“As memoir, and as a meditation on the meaning of memoir, history, and the restorative powers of both, Power in the Blood is as moving and profound as any life story I’ve encountered in quite a while…. It’s a wonderful read.”
“Linda Tate’s gripping family history is an amalgam of scholarly sleuthing, richly imaginative embellishment, and sheer psychological grit that delves deep into family legend to produce a narrative both reflective and transcending of the Appalachian region.”
Now and Then: The Appalachian Magazine
“I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a way to combine research with imagination to create complex, lifelike characters that will grip readers’ hearts from the get-go.…Tate provides an unflinching view of complicated, deeply flawed individuals, who inflict a great deal of pain on their families. At the same time, she maintains a tone of fairness and understanding, and in the end she shows how knowledge and honesty can heal the psyche.”
Power in the Blood: A Family Narrative traces Linda Tate’s journey to rediscover the Cherokee-Appalachian branch of her family and provides an unflinching examination of the poverty, discrimination, and family violence that marked their lives. In her search for the truth of her own past, Tate scoured archives, libraries, and courthouses throughout Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Illinois, and Missouri, visited numerous cemeteries, and combed through census records, marriage records, court cases, local histories, old maps, and photographs. As she began to locate distant relatives — fifth, sixth, seventh cousins, all descended from her great-greatgrandmother Louisiana — they gathered in kitchens and living rooms, held family reunions, and swapped stories. A past that had long been buried slowly came to light as family members shared the pieces of the family’s tale that had been passed along to them.
Power in the Blood is a dramatic family history that reads like a novel, as Tate’s compelling narrative reveals one mystery after another. Innovative and groundbreaking in its approach to research and storytelling, Power in the Blood shows that exploring a family story can enhance understanding of history, life, and culture and that honest examination of the past can lead to healing and liberation in the present.
Linda Tate is a faculty member in the University of Denver’s Writing Program. She is the author of A Southern Weave of Women: Fiction of the Contemporary South and the editor of Conversations with Lee Smith. She taught at Shepherd University in West Virginia for fifteen years and now lives in Boulder, Colorado. More info →
Save 20% ($23.16)
Save 20% ($48)
US and Canada only
Availability and price vary according to vendor.
Permission to reprint
Permission to photocopy or include in a course pack via Copyright Clearance Center
Joe Thorndike was managing editor of Life at the height of its popularity immediately following World War II. He was the founder of American Heritage and Horizon magazines, the author of three books, and the editor of a dozen more. But at age 92, in the space of six months he stopped reading or writing or carrying on detailed conversations. He could no longer tell time or make a phone call.
The memoir is the most popular and expressive literary form of our time. Writers embrace the memoir and readers devour it, propelling many memoirs by relative unknowns to the top of the best-seller list. Writing programs challenge authors to disclose themselves in personal narrative. Memoir and personal narrative urge writers to face the intimacies of the self and ask what is true.In
Situated in a remote outpost in West Virginia at the turn of the last century, the story that Lenore McComas Coberly tells in Sarah’s Girls is one of place, people, and unquenchable spirit. In this fictionalized account of her recent ancestors, Coberly masterfully traces the journeys of their lives, their dreams, and their hardships over the course of the twentieth century.At
When Linda Spence asked her aging mother to write her life story, her mother stared at a blank sheet of paper and asked—“How? Where do I begin?” In this practical guide to capturing those memories that have been stored away, Linda Spence provides the questions that are the keys to unlocking the memories that make up a life.
Sign up to be notified when new Ohio and Regional titles come out.
We will only use your email address to notify you of new titles in the subject area(s) you follow. We will never share your information with third parties.