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Redemption Road: The Quest for Peace and Justice in Liberia (A Novel)

T. Weefur "t. weefur" (Washington, DC) - See all my reviews

Redemption Road eloquently and vividly airs the 'dirty laundry' of the brutal actions and devastating consequences of the Liberian civil war in a medium that has not yet been utilized--literary fiction. The plot, which follows several characters who have not been able to deal with what happened to them during the war, gently twists and turns, always keeping the reader wondering what's around the bend. What I enjoyed most about the book was the author's ability to help the reader understand what was going on in the minds of the perpetrators of violence. The novel also illustrates that the labels of 'victim' and 'oppressor' can be interchangeable in time of war. Shaw also beautifully describes the duality of humanity and inhumanity of both protagonist and antagonist in Redemption Road. In her artful storytelling, the author reveals hope, repentance and forgiveness for even the most despicable crimes against humanity.

As a Liberian, this descriptive novel was especially meaningful as it whisked me home, once again--reading the familiar "Liberian English", and creating great imagery of smells, sights and sounds of a country I love. I was inspired by the notion embedded in the plot that achieving justice and finding forgiveness are truly the only ways that Liberia can successfully move past the horrors that held us back. Redemption Road is an inspiration to Liberians and anyone else who has an interest in historical works of fiction, and allows us all to see the strength of the human spirit.

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