Defying Slavery Against All Odds

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Retired veteran Reuben Sparks highlights African tribesman’s fight for love, for his people, in new book.

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In today’s world, change happens much more quickly than in Jaiye’s time. He took the steps needed to become the one true catalyst of change for his tribe and his people.

What can someone do when a loved one is sold to the highest bidder? How far can an ordinary person go to save them? In “One Cowrie Shell,” retired Air Force veteran Reuben Sparks shares the story of a young African tribesman who fights his way to America to free the woman he loves from the grips of slavery – all while challenging the status quo of African tribal culture.

In his premiere novel, Sparks explores the controversial role African tribes played in the slave trade by selling captured members of neighboring tribes to slave traders for profit. Jaiye, the protagonist tribesman, must come to grips with this stark reality while attempting to save his betrothed in America. This crisis forces him, and readers, to consider all angles of a narrative before coming to a conclusion.

“Popular culture leads most to believe that slaves were captured solely by the traders during the African slave trade,” Sparks said. “I often wondered what role the tribes played in this process, and that is what sparked my idea for ‘One Cowrie Shell.’”

Having been raised in the South during the Civil Rights era, Sparks’ natural curiosity for his African American ancestry led to a passion for research and inspired him to begin his writing career with Jaiye’s story.

“In today’s world, change happens much more quickly than in Jaiye’s time,” Sparks said. “He took the steps needed to become the one true catalyst of change for his tribe and his people.”

For more information, visit http://www.reubensparksauthor.com.

“One Cowrie Shell”
By Reuben Sparks
ISBN: 978-1-49178-028-2
Available in softcover, hardcover, e-book
Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and iUniverse

About the author
Reuben Sparks is a retired United States Air Force Intelligence Officer. The father of two adult daughters, he is married and lives in Panama City, Florida, where he enjoys traveling, bicycling, photography, and playing the piano. "One Cowrie Shell" is his first novel.

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