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The Vanishing Half
The Vanishing Half
Author: Brit Bennett
The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it's not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it's everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Many years l...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780525536291
ISBN-10: 0525536299
Publication Date: 6/2/2020
Pages: 352
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.

3.9 stars, based on 87 ratings
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

pj-s-bookcorner avatar reviewed The Vanishing Half on + 830 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Desiree and Stella Vignes are twins born in Louisiana in a small town named Mallard. It's a town founded and inhabited by blacks in the segregated South. When they leave in the middle of the night with no goodbyes to start a new life anywhere but the small town, they find their lives taking unimaginable paths. Once you start living a lie, it's hard work to maintain it. Early decisions can change your life as well as others'. Wonderful read!!!! Wonderfully written
VolunteerVal avatar reviewed The Vanishing Half on + 548 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
The 100th book I read this year was The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett. After leaving this on my TBR shelves far too long, I'm glad my library book club put this in my hands and in my ears as our September title.

I've heard the basic premise of this plot many times - twin sisters run away from their tiny Southern town as teens and develop very different lives. One sister 'passes' as white while the other eventually returns to their unique home town. I was pleasantly surprised to learn the novel explores additional themes including marriage, family, colorism, and gender identity.

As in the author's debut The Mothers, the writing is powerful. âA body could be labeled but a person couldn't, and the difference between the two depended on that muscle in your chest. That beloved organ, not sentient, not aware, not feeling, just pumping along, keeping you alive.â

I marked several quotes as I read the first third in hardcover, then enjoyed the audiobook skillfully narrated by Shayna Small for the remainder of the story.

This novel generated an interesting discussion in our book club. Generally members liked it but felt it included so many topics, none were addressed in great depth. We discussed the title and noted the many plot points that fit into the theme of vanishing. As always, I appreciated the book more after discussing it with fellow readers.

I definitely appreciate Ms. Bennett's novels and will patiently wait for her next (please tell us there will be a third novel) to be published.
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joann avatar reviewed The Vanishing Half on + 389 more book reviews
The Vignes twin girls grow up in a town that is not found on a map. They are African-American and growing in a town that has been proud of the fact that all of their residents are near-white in their complexions.
Desiree and Stella escape home at the ages of sixteen and try to make their lives elsewhere. They do well, although Stella becomes involved with a man and takes off without a word to her twin.
They will lead very separate lives, but circumstances will interplay with their families.

This was well written and really gets you thinking.
reviewed The Vanishing Half on + 330 more book reviews
Guess I'm not much of a fiction reader. Found the book boring. Story of two black sisters growing up in very different manners, one being very black and one being able to grow up like a white person.
koroper avatar reviewed The Vanishing Half on + 5 more book reviews
Great story that twists and turns with the unalike sisters.

Book Wiki

Original Publication Date (YYYY-MM-DD)
Stella Vignes (Primary Character)
Desiree Vignes (Primary Character)
Fictional Places


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