Reviews

Reviews of Sundays

Some reviewers loved the history…

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Allen has done a great job with this entire series, but Sundays has made it’s way into my top 3. This is the story of Dustin, a young man who had emotional troubles as a young man due to seeing visions in his dreams. When he is a grown man, he finds out why. He comes from a family line that has gone through extraordinary times and adventures. He finds out that he is also of mixed race and that his mother never told him. She never told him of the shock therapy that he received as a child to stop his dreams. It is most of all, a family story.

One of My Top Three

—Brenda Browning

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Sundays is by A. Robert Allen. This is an historical fiction but is definitely based on true events and stories. A. Robert Allen writes about his ancestors in the late 1800’s on the island of Nevis and the 1930’s in Harlem to the present. This particular book takes the idea of passing as white and shows how it affected his family through generations, especially when the future generation had no idea that this had happened. With the aid of genealogy and Ancestry.com as well as primary source material given to him by his Mother, Dustin delves into the past to make some startling discoveries. The concept of electrical shock treatment to solve “mental problems” and the effect it had on its victims is also explored. Add in a little mystical influence through dreams and their meanings and you have a book that is difficult to put down. The characters, being based on real people, are definitely realistic and well-developed while the plot incidents really happened. The book is well-written and well edited so that it flows well without sudden stops due to typographical errors. It flows seamlessly across decades from the past to present and future events.

It Flows Seamlessly Across Decades

—Pam Blevins

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“Sundays” is A. Robert Allen’s latest novel in his Slavery and Beyond Series.  It is a book one can devour on a Sunday and digest it the rest of the week.  The story uncovers a family’s lineage and secrets dating back to the Island of Nevis in the early 1800s and Harlem in the 1930s sparked by a family revelation in their hometown of Hicksville, NY, in 2017.  The main character, Dustin, struggles with his personal life and haunting experiences which drive him to research ancestral relationships and resolve unanswered questions from a troubling past.

Unanswered Questions from a Troubling Past

—Terry Smith

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The author is brilliant in setting an intriguing scenario where Dustin, a main character is given the honored task of discovering and holding dear their families story, truth, secrets, and treasures. And so the journey of discovery begins on Sundays with his Mom. The author is skilled in telling their complicated story. The strong loyalty to family blood is a well written driving force as Dustin and his Mom wade through the dark waters of their family’s history. The layers of years of hidden truths, racial divides and horror was often unsettling as are the threads that bind them to the past. Generations of blurred lines of ethnicity and race uncovered. The blending of eras is well written. The author brings this sad harsh truth to a blinding light. Anyone who has been troubled by their past and how it impacts their present life and future will be deeply moved by this story.

Bringing a Sad Harsh Truth to a Blinding Light

—Gail Eichinger

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Sundays by A. Robert Allen is a phenomenal book. I really could not put the book down. Set in multiple times, it is rooted in the present as the main character — Dustin — deals with his family history as well as his own place in the world.  The story is based on factual occurrences and people and tells a gripping and thought-provoking tale about family relationships, history and psychology. While telling a story, the author pulls readers in, challenging them to think about not only their perceptions on race, but on privileges (and lack thereof) based on initial perceptions. This is so timely in these last few years and sometimes it seems so many people are blindly accepting their life as the norm, while not realizing that one person’s normal is not everyone’s normal.    Fantastic job! I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys learning and/or a good story. I absolutely loved this!

A Phenomenal Book.

—Debra Miller

Others loved the thought-provoking themes…

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This is the story, mostly factual covering several generations. This family was not perfect; they had their faults like any family. Mostly they stuck by each other and come hell or high water, they protected each other. The protagonist of this story Dustin Murphy spends his life trying to overcome events of his past.  Thankfully Dustin has family who stood by him and loves him dearly.  Sundays was beautifully written with heart and soul. Funny and light-hearted, other times brutal.

Beautifully Written with Heart and Soul

—Rhonda Holle

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A. Robert Allen has learned I love his books. This fifth in the Slavery and Beyond is a good book.  He doesn’t pull punches with his writing, it is raw and jarring in its reality but the writing keeps you reading. It held my attention and I am an easily bored reader who usually has three or four books in various stages of being finished. I picked up my preview copy of Sundays, intending to read a few pages then get my chores and errands done. I never left my house or the chair.  When I looked up, I realized I hadn’t cooked dinner, hadn’t done the laundry or gone to the bank. The first few pages grabbed ahold of my very heart and didn’t let go. Other reviewers will give you the spoilers, but I won’t. The writing is good, really good. The storyline was easy to drop into, without needing to refresh my memory of events in the other books.

I Love His Books

—Angela Miles

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Since I research my family, I was captivated with where this book was going. Having recently taken a trip to Montserrat to meet family from that research and being a graduate of the HBCU that is mentioned in this book I felt completely connected. I feel as if I have been on this entire journey with this series and wouldn’t have wanted to miss any part.

I Felt Completely Connected

—Syrica Richardson

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A Robert Allen is a master at drawing the reader into the lives of the characters in his books. He does a good job of combining facts with fiction to weave the family history which makes for an intriguing story. The part where the mother is reluctant to share family secrets is so poignant. I totally understand because my mother was just as hesitant to share her family secret with me. ‘Back then’ such things were left swept under the rug. Sundays is a reminder to us that you can’t go back and change life, but you can learn from your past. Kudos to Anthony on another well-written story. I highly recommend the series to anyone who enjoys well written historical books.

A. Robert Allen Hits Another Homerun

—Betty Heath

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Sundays is book 5 in the Slavery and Beyond series by A. Robert Allen. This book is loosely based on fact, details the author has researched from his own family tree. As with the other books I have read in this series I really enjoyed it. To start with I found I needed to concentrate on the characters and storyline and I wondered if I was going to enjoy it. It wasn’t long though, before I was hooked, so hooked that I was thinking about it when I wasn’t reading it. I kept picking it up when I should have been doing other things! The reader follows Dustin Murphy on his journey through life discovering who he is and where he and his family originate from.  Again another book by A Robert Allen that will leave you thinking about it long after you have finished it. This book is different, read it to find out why and also try others in the series if you haven’t already, I don’t think you will regret it.

I Was Hooked

—Linda Smith