Whether fighting slavery or its modern equivalent (abortion), Gmitro’s novel set in antebellum America illustrates the courage needed to effect social change.
The second in a series of three novels concerned with the prosecution of a young man who saved the life of his unborn child in an unorthodox way, Equality@Big Cypress provides a substantial backstory to account for why the protagonist of the first volume would have engaged in such a daring effort to save the life of that unborn child and the mother from abortion.
The controlling theme connecting both volumes is, unquestionably, courage: courage that Lance Strickland took in saving his unborn child in volume one, and courage that his predecessor, Wyatt Striklynn, took in helping three beloved slaves escape from members of his own family who were slaveowners in the antebellum American South in volume two.
The topic of the first volume in the series (Viable@140) concerned abortion and the mother’s now debunked “right” to kill the unborn child whom she might carry. This second volume in the Write for Life series pursues other topics. Pro-life activists have long compared abortion with slavery, as Dr. Jack Willke explained in his 1984 nonfiction work Slavery and Abortion: History Repeats. In that nonfiction work, Willke argued that abortion is similar to slavery, which dehumanized the born person of African descent as much as abortion dehumanizes the unborn person of any race.
Gmitro’s novel can be considered a literary exploration of Willke’s claim from forty years ago. While it was a central topic in the first volume in the series, abortion does not appear at all in this subsequent volume, yet the parallels between the unborn child deprived of his or her right to life and African slaves deprived of their right to live is inescapable.
Contemporary students may especially find it challenging to examine how it could have been possible that born human beings of one race could ever have thought that slaves—who, unlike unborn children hidden in the womb, were visible people—were considered less than human and therefore could be legally considered property. Since the status of the slaves parallels the dehumanization of today’s abortion movement, Gmitro’s novel will disturb the radical minority of readers who support abortion, but regale others who celebrate that the faulty and now-defunct Roe v. Wade legal decision (which disordered the family relationships of father, mother, and unborn child) has been thrown into the dustbin of history.
A third-person omniscient narrative throughout, the structure of the narrative is as fast moving as a Mary Higgins Clark mystery. Comprised of 133 chapters and a prologue and epilogue, each chapter of the 486-page novel averages less than four pages. Most chapters end with a tease, a hook that persuades the reader to continue reading. Each chapter shifts the action from various geographic locations (the west coast of Africa; South Carolina; Washington, DC; and others), but the shift in setting does not disturb the reader’s understanding of the plot.
In fact, the constant shifts in action in the various regions help the reader understand that the obtaining of African slaves (sold to European traders by African tribes) contributes to the description of what happens to those slaves when they reach South Carolina, for example, which then leads into what the Buchanan presidency must consider when one of the Democratic Party’s senators is caught in illegal transatlantic slave trading.
The action-packed writing style easily justifies the claim that the novel can be leisurely read in one or two days. There are, however, significant drawbacks in the composition of the volume, mostly numerous punctuation and grammar errors, which, while not impeding the comprehension of the narrative, not only makes the reading choppy (since the reader must correct the errors him- or herself), but also casts doubt on the quality of the editorial staff reviewing the manuscript or (worse) the author himself. It is hoped that future editions will correct these many errors to improve the quality of the volume.
Despite these drawbacks, I recommend Gmitro’s novel for high school and college students (especially those involved in social movements comparing the history of slavery and abortion) and contemporary social justice activists (especially those who fight against the woke distortion of Judeo-Christian social justice, such as the racist group Black Lives Matter and the violently pro-abortion Democratic Party).
Since Amazon collaborates with cancel culture zealots and bans conservative and pro-life books, buy this book directly from the publisher: