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  • Published: 14 September 2021
  • ISBN: 9780241523551
  • Imprint: Particular Books
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 208
  • RRP: $45.00


The Hidden History of Women-Led Slave Revolts

A stunning, imaginative work of history that transforms our understanding of slavery and resistance

Women warriors planned and led slave revolts on slave ships during the passage across the Atlantic. They fought their enslavers throughout the Americas. And then they were erased from history.

In Wake Rebecca Hall, a historian, a granddaughter of slaves, and a woman haunted by the legacy of slavery, tells their story. With in-depth archival research and a measured use of historical imagination, she constructs the likely pasts of women rebels who fought for freedom on slave ships bound to America, as well as the stories of women who led slave revolts in Colonial New York. Beneath both is Hall's own tale: of a life lived in the shadow of slavery and its consequences.
Strikingly illustrated in black and white, Wake explores both a personal and a global legacy. Part graphic novel, part memoir, it is a powerful reminder that while the past is gone, we still live in its wake.

'Not only a riveting tale of Black women's leadership of slave revolts but an equally dramatic story of the engaged scholarship that enabled its discovery' - Angela Davis

  • Published: 14 September 2021
  • ISBN: 9780241523551
  • Imprint: Particular Books
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 208
  • RRP: $45.00

Praise for Wake

A compelling and emotionally charged debut about the painful aftermath of war and the ways - small, brave or commonplace - that keep us going. It touches feelings we know, and settings - dance halls, war front, queues outside the grocer - that we don't. I loved it.


A tender and timely novel, full of compassion and quiet insight. The author gives us a moving and original glimpse into the haunted peace after the Great War, her characters drawn by the gravity of the unmarked, the unknown and perhaps, finally, the unhoped for.

Chris Cleave, author of THE OTHER HAND

Wake is powerful and humane; a novel that charms and beguiles. Anna Hope's characters are so real; flawed and searching, and her prose so natural, one almost forgets how very great a story she is telling.

Sadie Jones, author of THE OUTCAST

Superb ... beautifully crafted

Irish Times

A moving novel about the aftershock of the 1914-1918 conflict. ... unlikely many will prove better than Anna Hope's Wake

Sunday Times

Absorbing and timely

Daily Mail

Wise and insightful

Sunday Express

A hit, we think!

Simon Mayo Bookclub

Impressive and poignant ... moving and rewarding

Woman and Home

Poignant ... stays long in the memory


I wouldn't be surprised if this was the biggest hardback debut of the year

Alexandra Hemingsley, Radio Two Arts Show

This centenary year, so many more female writers have chosen The Great War as their central theme ...there is WAKE by Anna Hope, chronicling the lives of women battling with postwar loss ...I welcome these, and more, for their stories and the history lessons they incorporate

Arifa Akbar, The Independent

Poignant and powerful, it's a must-read.

Fabulous Magazine

Anna Hope reveals a tragic connection between three women living i 1920s London in her impressive debut

Good Housekeeping Magazine

An unusual aspect of WAKE is the occasional italicized passage featuring a chorus of anonymous characters ... they add heft to the book's perspective on war. The most affecting of these of these is an Irish soldier who stands close enough to Douglas Haig at the Cenotaph to see the grey in his moustache. Anna Hope illustrates the breadth of grief across the country.

Times Literary Supplement

Hope weaves her three characters’ workaday narratives together, building scenes that wear their research lightly …The women’s lives come at us in a present-tense narration that keeps the book easy to read, letting the characters’ thoughts bob to the surface of the text in italics, as if in a nod towards the modernism that was brewing in that very period.


A very simple book which elicits very complicated emotions ...luscious, impressive, moving.

Julia Kingsford

It's an unusual story, told well and written delicately. The women and the world they inhabit are beautifully drawn. It tells us that life can continue to be lived even after terrible loss.

RONAN BENNETT, Whitbread award-winning author and creator of Channel Four’s ‘Top Boy’

Hope’s unblinking prose is reminiscent of Vera Brittain’s classic memoir “Testament of Youth” in its depiction of the social and emotional fallout, particularly on women, of the Great War.

New York Times

Wake is a staggeringly good first novel, packed with soulful insight, universal emotions and those intimate small details which add more depth and meaning to a picture than the brutal sweep of a broad brush.

Lancashire Evening Post

It’s hard for me to believe that this amazing, touching book is a debut novel. Absolutely recommend and already on the run for a spot in my top 10.


It is a powerful read; you can almost see the endless mud of the trenches, and sense the fear of those young men.


Anna Hope wove her spell and managed to conjure up an intriguing tale, quite rich with emotion that held me entranced until the last page. I can’t wait to see what she does next.


Wake is a brilliant debut novel, deeply moving, well-plotted and engrossing.


This is such a brilliant book; one that is both beautifully written and emotionally involving, with a fascinating plot and wonderful characters who pluck at your heartstrings on every page.


I have no doubt that Wake is going to be included in my Top Ten books of 2014, I know that it's only January, but this is a book that has had a huge effect on me.


The only regret I have is that I didn’t read this book sooner. WAKE is luxury. Pure luxury.


She manages to capture every single detail, every emotion and every sound.


Wake is that rare and beautiful thing: a first novel that sings with such power and grace that it lifts itself effortlessly from the pack. Powerful, passionate, compassionate, it marks the rising of a new star in the literary firmament. Anna Hope is here to stay.

M.C. Scott - Author of Rome and chair of the Historical Writers Association

Intricately researched and beautifully written, with the kind of restrained yet emotional prose one expects from a seasoned author. Its characters, too, have a depth and quiet tragedy one rarely finds in debut fiction. In this centenary year commemorating the outbreak of war, there've been many novels about the conflict:Wake is without doubt one of the best.

Hannah Beckerman - Huffington Post

A masterclass in historical fiction


Impressive ... A heart-breaking tale of grief and guilt

Psychologies Magazine

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