Sana Butler’s Sugar of the Crop: My Journey to Find the Children of Slaves could have been a fascinating book. Unfortunately, that’s not the book Butler has written. Instead, she’s crafted yet another entry in the solipsistic, poorly written Ode to Myself genre. It’s so bad that it borders on parody of the autobiographical form. As I point out in my review for Jackson Free Press, “the story of the generation of black Americans that emerged just after slavery ended should make for one of the country’s most enriching narratives. These direct descendants, who grew up as Jim Crow segregation laws were first implemented, could reveal plenty about how America came to be, and how it was.”
Instead, these children are mere springboards for Butler’s self-discovery; they’re afterthoughts in their own stories. It’s inexcusable, especially given the circumstances of the people discussed, and I don’t think my hatred of the book comes across as forcefully as it should have. See what you think here.