||Crystall Clear Publishing
||Nov. 26, 2010
A heartfelt story on a family's struggle and endurance of racism, heartache, and abuse.
Buy your copy!
As an interracial couple in the late 60's Alabama, Richard Adams and Marilyn Halston encounter more than their fair share of threats, ridicule - and even abuse - at the hands of their racist compatriots. They flee West in order to escape the hate and provide their daughter, Brittney, with a safer, more secure upbringing. As Brittney finally comes of age, she lerns of an incredible secret that her parents managed to conceal from her for more than 30 years, ultimately forcing the entire family to come face-to-face with the haunting demons shadowing their every move for decades.
Even as a small child, I could feel the evil Grandpa Adams possessed. When I was about eight years old, we had to go back to Alabama for my grandmother’s funeral. When my dad, mom, and I walked hand in hand up the crackling wooden steps of the small white church in Selma right off a dirt road from main Highway 80, my grandfather met us at the faintly dull brown painted door. “Why’d ya have to
bring them here? Ain’t you got no respect for your dead momma, boy?”
My mom clutched my hand, pulling me behind her. She placed her hands over my ears to protect me, so I wouldn’t see the monster they called my grandpa but it didn’t work. I had heard the foul comments. Even worse, I’d seen the
wickedness in his eyes and the fear in hers.
My father squalled out, “This is my family, whether you like it or not. We’re not goin’ anywhere!” He appeared to be trying to not draw any attention from the other mourners.
“I can’t believe you’d bring this black wench in here and disgrace your momma like this.” Black wench? Disgrace? I couldn’t recall these words in any books I’d read or any spelling words I’d reviewed in school, so I couldn’t figure
out the exact meaning at the time. I knew they weren’t compliments of any kind. I remembered an intense feeling
watching all of those white people staring at us – looking like they were feening for a lynching. I remembered learning about lynchings during Black History month later in school. Many southern whites watched, mainly black men being hung, burned, and sometimes other forms of torture as a form of entertainment. Mom looked frightened. Her grip tightened on my hand. I looked up at her and wanted to let her know everything would be all right. At that time, I thought my father would surely protect her from any danger. He was the police. He had a gun and a badge. No one would ever hurt his family. I always felt safe around Dad, and Mom was no pushover. This was a different brand of people...a different kind of white people than I was used to. Mom really stood out because she was brown skinned – not too dark, but definitely darker than a brown paper bag. I was what they considered “passing” back then so my father probably could have eased me in with no fuss. Thinking back, I’m pretty sure that was the only reason my grandparents tolerated me when I hung out with my dad whenever we were in Alabama. We went back there often to see my mother’s parents. They were the nicer grandparents. They were the ones that smothered me with hugs and kisses
everyday we were there and were sad to see us leave.
That night, my dad and I went to Grandpa Adams’ house to say good-bye. Mom stayed behind at her parents’
house. When we got there, I was told to go into a room to watch T.V. while my dad stayed in the kitchen talking to my
grandfather. The house was small. There was a living room at the front of the house with a door to the right that led to the kitchen. To the left was a narrow hallway that led to two bedrooms and a bathroom. There were heaters or radiators on the floor. I remembered them yelling at each other a lot
and my grandfather telling my dad he had made the biggest mistake in his life by marrying “that woman.” That’s how he
referred to my mom. I tried to tune out the shouting by turning the small black and white television up. Those were
the only real memories I had of my grandfather, Herbert Adams.
Deeply compelling, Through The Eyes Of My Mulatto Daughter is an enlightening, eye-opening account of one family’s dramatic struggle against the worst that humanity has to offer. A highly recommended tale of the rewards of lasting endurance.
Midwest Book Review
The cruelty mixed race children faced is astounding. "Through the Eyes of My Mulatto Daughter" is a novel following the life of Brittney Adams, daughter of a mixed couple and growing up in the deep south. With street smarts, Brittney finds another teen in need and moves to help her find her place in life and help her prepare for the cruelty of being a teen mother. "Through the Eyes of My Mulatto Daughter" is an excellent read with a powerful message, highly recommended.
Joey D. Pinkney
On the surface, Through the Eyes of My Mulatto Daughter by Michele L. Waters seemed like a tale of a husband and wife exhibiting the racial friction that's the best known secret in America. However, Waters contributed a piece of literature that is simultaneously deeper than the racial divide between whites and blacks, yet fueled by the simplicity of racism.
The depth which Waters gives her characters is amazing. They are more than complex; they are realistic. From the maturation seen in the main character Brittney to the development of her mother Marilyn, the characters grow on you and make you want to see the best from them.
The book's cover, although artistic, and title, although touching, doesn't show the full power of Michele L. Waters's novel. Once you tune into the way this story takes place, there is no way to finish this novel unaffected by the way Waters portrays the potential of the human condition.
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