A memoir of racial identity and fractured family set in 1970s and
Born in London to a Nigerian princess, Precious Williams saw her
life change radically in its first months. Her mother, deciding she
couldn't raise a child, placed an ad for foster care in "Nursery
World." A response soon came from a woman in rural Sussex, and
Precious, three months old, was handed off in a basket.
Nan, Precious's new foster mother, was sixty years old and
white, and prided herself on being "color blind." But she might
also have been shortsighted about the difficulties her black
daughter would encounter. At her all-white school, Precious was
taunted and ostracized, and Nan struggled to understand her
daughter's troubles. Precious's birth mother would visit
occasionally, providing glimpses of a different world, but
eventually turned critical of a daughter who had become "too
Retreating into her imagination, Precious forged her own
identity. She emerged from the disillusionment and
self-destructiveness of her teen years with a fierce resolve not to
let circumstance, class, or color determine her future. Precious
Williams tells her extraordinary story in "Color Blind," brightly,
bravely grappling with issues of identity, motherhood, and
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