This is a novel in the guise of the tape-recorded recollections of a black woman who has lived 110 years, who has been both a slave and a witness to the black militancy of the 1960's. In this woman Ernest Gaines has created a legendary figure, a woman equipped to stand beside William Faulkner's Dilsey in " The Sound and the Fury ". Miss Jane Pittman, like Dilsey, has " endured ", has seen almost everything and foretold the rest. " Gaines's novel brings to mind other great works " The Odyssey " for the way his heroine's travels manage to summarize the American history of her race, and " Huckleberry Finn " for the clarity of her voice, for her rare capacity to sort through the mess of years and things to find the one true story in it all. " Geoffrey Wolff, Newsweek. " Stunning. I know of no black novel about the South that exudes quite the same refreshing mix of wit and wrath, imagination and indignation, misery and poetry. And I can recall no more memorable female character in Southern fiction since Lena of Faulkner's " Light in August " than Miss cane Pittman herself. " Josh Greenfeld, Life.