An enthralling journey into the shadowy republic of Haiti. In the land of Vodou, zombies and the Tontons Macoute. In this classic account, history jostles with adventure, high comedy is touched with danger; and Haiti glows like a magic charm. Now updated and with a new foreword by the author for the post-earthquake edition.
God finally gave X what she asked for. If only he would teach her how to use it. After three years and more creepy demons than she’d care to recall, Emme Vaughn has finally found her mama. Only the reunion doesn’t go as X expected. It’s not easy adapting to a new life in New Orleans, with a mother who was possessed by the devil until recently and a stepfather she didn’t know existed. Especially when a mysterious stranger, her stepfather’s charming and handsome protégé Jean-Paul, drives a wedge between Emme and Francis. Is the enigmatic outsider trying to replace her man? Or does he have a more sinister plan— one she couldn’t have imagined? Haunted by a mysterious ghost and threatened by a demon in her mama’s house, X gets ready to rumble. She dons God’s armor to face the evil force that has hunted her all her life, but first she must cast aside the little girl act and draw strength from all the celestial and worldly friends who have guided her this far. Once and for all, the devil has it coming . . . Exorsistah style.
Honorable Mention in the 2019 OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature Longlist! "After the 2010 Haiti earthquake kills her parents, a woman returns to Haiti after leaving it as a child, 25 years ago. A powerful and engrossing story, this read cannot be missed." --Bustle, 35 Most Anticipated Fiction Books of 2018 "In this fascinating novel about Haitian life, Ulysse beautifully braids together the struggle for personal redemption with the struggle for dignity and human rights." --Rain Taxi Review of Books "Ulysse gives readers a riveting story of a woman who is trying to make sense of a homescape that, if not wholly disappeared, is irrevocably altered." --BuzzFeed "With lush descriptions and Creole-inflected dialogue, Katia D. Ulysse frankly and deftly writes about the nuances and class differences in Haiti. Mouths Don't Speak explores how trauma touches us at home and abroad, wherever those places may be. This includes the experiences of the underserved kids Jacqueline teaches, American veterans, the earthquake victims, and children and their parents. Ulysse illustrates the complicated but unbreakable connections we have to family and home, and shows how privilege doesn't necessarily keep you from tragedy." --Shelf Awareness "A captivating portrait of a woman plagued with worry about family and homeland, this beautifully written novel recalls Toni Morrison's Paradise." --Library Journal "Powerful...As Ulysse explores grief, she moves beyond her protagonist to consider the murky motivations and emotions of other characters. This is a harrowing, thoughtful dive into the aftermath of national and personal tragedies filtered through diasporic life." --Publishers Weekly "Ulysse punctuates...descriptions of the lush Florestant plantation with insightful observations about strained family dynamics. The ties that bind can also constrict us." --Booklist "In Drifting, Ulysse's 2014 story collection, Haitian immigrants struggle through New York City after the 2010 earthquake that destroyed much of their county. In her debut novel, Ulysse revisits that disaster with a clearer and sharper focus. Jacqueline Florestant is mourning her parents, presumed dead after the earthquake, while her ex-Marine husband cares for their young daughter. But the expected losses aren't the most serious, and a trip to freshly-wounded Haiti exposes the way tragedy follows class lines as well as family ones." --The Millions "Within minutes of starting Katia D. Ulysse's novel--with settings in contemporary Haiti and America, and characters caught in the aftermath of Haiti's earthquake of 2010--the reader is drawn deep into an intricate tale of family and relationships across cultures...[Main character] Jacqueline Florestant's route is no easy one, but her story puts an individual face on the generalized social stigmas of Haiti." --Island Origins Magazine, included in Summer Reading Roundup No one was prepared for the massive earthquake that struck Haiti in 2010, taking over a quarter-million lives, and leaving millions of others homeless. Three thousand miles away, Jacqueline Florestant mourns the presumed death of her parents, while her husband, a former US Marine and combat veteran, cares for their three-year-old daughter as he fights his own battles with acute PTSD. Horrified and guilt-ridden, Jacqueline returns to Haiti in search of the proverbial "closure." Unfortunately, the Haiti she left as a child twenty-five years earlier has disappeared. Her quest turns into a tornado of deception, desperation, and more death. So Jacqueline holds tightly to her daughter--the only one who must not die.
This collection of essays considers the means and extent of Haiti’s ‘exceptionalization’ – its perception in multiple arenas as definitively unique with respect not only to the countries of the North Atlantic, but also to the rest of the Americas. Painted as repulsive and attractive, abject and resilient, singular and exemplary, Haiti has long been framed discursively by an extraordinary epistemological ambivalence. This nation has served at once as cautionary tale, model for humanitarian aid and development projects and point of origin for general theorising of the so-called Third World. What to make of this dialectic of exemplarity and alterity? How to pull apart this multivalent narrative in order to examine its constituent parts? Conscientiously gesturing to James Clifford’s The Predicament of Culture (1988), the contributors to The Haiti Exception work on the edge of multiple disciplines, notably that of anthropology, to take up these and other such questions from a variety of methodological and disciplinary perspectives, including Africana Studies, Anthrohistory, Art History, Black Studies, Caribbean Studies, education, ethnology, Jewish Studies, Literary Studies, Performance Studies and Urban Studies. As contributors revise and interrogate their respective praxes, they accept the challenge of thinking about the particular stakes of and motivations for their own commitment to Haiti.
THE WORDS OF WYCLEF JEAN: “I want to assure my countrymen that I will continue to work for Haiti’s renewal; though the board has determined that I am not a resident of Haiti, home is where the heart is—and my heart has and will always be in Haiti. This ruling just tells me that I can’t officially seek the office of president. More importantly, there is no one who can tell me to stop my work in Haiti, and there is no one who could. I think of my daughter, Angelina, and it makes me want to redouble my efforts to help give all the children in Haiti better days. I also want to honor the memory of my father, a minister; I know that he would tell me that even though I’ve faced a setback, I must continue in all my good-faith efforts to help Haiti turn a corner to a better and brighter future. Do not think that my role in the future of Haiti is over; it’s just a different role than I had anticipated it to be.”