One Drop

My Father's Hidden Life--A Story of Race and Family Secrets
By Bliss Broyard (Trade Paperback, 2008)
Ever since renowned literary critic Anatole Broyard's own parents, New Orleans Creoles, had moved to Brooklyn and began to "pass" in order to get work, he had learned to conceal his racial identity. As he grew older and entered the ranks of the New York literary elite, he maintained the facade. Now his daughter Bliss tries to make sense of his choices and the impact of this revelation on her own life. She searches out the family she never knew in New York and New Orleans, and considers the profound consequences of racial identity. With unsparing candor and nuanced insight, Broyard chronicles her evolution from sheltered WASP to a woman of mixed race ancestry.

Ever since renowned literary critic Anatole Broyard's own parents, New Orleans Creoles, had moved to Brooklyn and began to "pass" in order to get work, he had learned to conceal his racial identity. As he grew older and entered the ranks of the New York literary elite, he maintained the facade. Now his daughter Bliss tries to make sense of his choices and the impact of this revelation on her own life. She searches out the family she never knew in New York and New Orleans, and considers the profound consequences of racial identity. With unsparing candor and nuanced insight, Broyard chronicles her evolution from sheltered WASP to a woman of mixed race ancestry.

Bliss Broyard is the author of the collection of stories, My Father, Dancing, which was a New York Times Notable Book of the year. Her fiction and essays have been anthologized in Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize Anthology and The Art of the Essay, and have appeared in Grand Street, Ploughshares, The New York Times, Elle Magazine and elsewhere. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and daughter.

  • One Drop

  • "This probing and often poignant account of a daughter's search for perspective on her father's life and those it touched has so much to reveal about race in America."  (Chicago Tribune).

  • "A deeply felt and compassionate book, a daughter's gift of true sympathy and understanding." (San Francisco Chronicle).

  •   "This sprawling memoir packs a wallop." (USA Today).

  • "This is a brave and thoughtful book...She grapples with [the difficult questions] as honestly and openly as an admiring and adoring daughter could." (Boston Globe).

  • "Broyard's vivid, compassionate portrait of her complex father raises the question, What is the deep-down cost of living a lie? And her remarkably perceptive and well-wrought saga of blood ties denied and nurtured celebrates the grand diversity and true interconnectivity of the entire human family." (Booklist (starred review)).

  • (Library Journal).

Product Details

One Drop
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Price: $15.99 US/$17.99 CAN
  • Pages: 544
  • Physical Dimensions: 5-1/2" x 8-1/4"
  • ISBN-13: 9780316008068
  • On Sale Date: 09/09/2008
One Drop