Inspired by true events and a landmark case in US history, the unputdownable and deeply moving story of a black nurse who makes a shocking discovery about two young girls in her care, from a New York Times bestselling author
'Shot through with spirit and hope, it's one hell of a book' Stylist, Books You Can't Miss in 2022
A nurse at the Family Planning Clinic in Montgomery Alabama, Civil Townsend is passionate about putting choice into women's hands. She brings the option of birth control to their doorsteps, and with it the right to determine their own destinies. Or so she believes.
When she is assigned to administer birth control to two school-age Black girls, the Williams sisters, who live off an old unpaved road in a shack without running water, Civil can't help but feel uneasy. She grows close to the family and becomes fiercely invested in their well-being. And then she makes a shocking discovery: the girls have been involuntarily sterilized. Civil is horrified that such a terrible mistake could have taken place, and vows to get to the bottom of it. She soon learns that this is no isolated event but a pattern, far more serious than she could ever have imagined, targeting poor Black women. Could her clinic be responsible? Had she and her fellow Black nurses been complicit? No matter how ugly, Civil is determined for the truth to be brought to light.
Based on true events, Take My Hand brims with hope, compassion, and the burning pursuit of justice.
Dolen Perkins-Valdez is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel Wench. In 2011, she was a finalist for two NAACP Image Awards and the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for fiction. She received a DC Commission on the Arts Grant for her second novel Balm, which was published by HarperCollins in 2015. Dolen is also a 2020 nominee for a United States Artists Fellowship, and the current Chair of the Board of the PEN/Faulkner Foundation. On behalf of the foundation, she has visited nearly every public high school in the District of Columbia to talk about the importance of reading and writing. She is currently Associate Professor in the Literature Department at American University and lives in Washington, DC with her family.