Clare Kendry has severed all ties to her past. Elegant, fair-skinned and ambitious, she is married to a white man who is unaware of her African-American heritage. When she renews her acquaintance with her childhood friend Irene, who has not hidden her origins, both women are forced to reassess their marriages, the lies they have told, and to confront the secret fears they have buried within themselves. Nella Larsen’s intense, taut and psychologically nuanced portrayal of lives and identities dangerously colliding established her as a leading writer of America’s Harlem Renaissance.
Penguin Books, 2020 (1929)