(1) Between Slavery and Freedom
(2) Beyond The Colored Line
(3) The Road to Freedom
About: The Road to Freedom
Deeply concerned about the state of Black America, a fight with his brother compels a young Joseph to leave his mother’s house and join his friends for a trip to Atlanta for SNCC’s (Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee) second conference. Excited to live life on their own, Jo and his friends have left school and the lives they were living for a chance to become part of the movement. With no money and essentially no plan the seven friends, three black and four white, set out for the road when they are stopped by a racist cop who makes them exit the car. The teens are unaware that a mob of Klansmen also awaits them at the New Orleans bus terminal.
Find out in the 3rd installment of the Stella Trilogy how Joseph and his friends discover the truth about themselves in the Jim Crow south on The Road to Freedom.
About: Beyond The Colored Line
Born in 1916, Stella May is the great granddaughter of former slave Stella (Book 1). The descendant of mixed ancestry, Stella’s complexion is very light, and her blonde hair and hazel eyes causes her to be the tease of her black classmates. Unable to find solace among her African American contemporaries, Stella finds it difficult to adjust to a world where she is too light to be black and too poor to be white.
After The Great Depression of the 1930s forces Stella’s family to move to Chicago, a prevailing conversation with Aunt Sara provokes Stella to pass, and she decides to live her life as Sidney McNair, a white woman.
How far is too far? Find out in this Stella Sequel what’s truly beyond the colored line.
About Between Slavery and Freedom
Raised under the protection of her mother and the field hands, Stella is unaware that she is a slave. Not being accustomed to hard labor, things change when Mama dies and she falls into the cruel hands of Mars Saddler. Years later, when the Louisiana Constitutional Convention abolishes slavery in the state, Stella learns of Saddler’s plan to keep her on the plantation. As a result, she agrees to accompany Saddler’s daughter Carla and her husband to The Windy City and learns the hard way the difference between slavery and freedom.
Stella is a work of Historical Fiction and is distinctive in its focus on one woman’s road to self-discovery, against the backdrop of the African American fight for justice, racial equality, and freedom.
The 3-Part series focuses on the history of one family in their struggle for racial identity. Discover in this Trilogy how 3 individuals living in separate time periods strive to overcome the same struggle, carefully knit together by one blood.
“Yecheilyah Ysrayl takes us on a colorful and thought provoking journey through the eyes of a mulatto slave woman Stella. Generations later, Stella’s descendant Cynthia May has no idea of Stella’s life as a slave, nor the true identity of their bloodline. Since Cynthia is a racist she is in for a rude awakening. Stella is reminiscent of a wonderfully written slave narrative, a story of history and pain, it is brilliant opener of the Stella series.“
“Stella: Beyond the Colored Line is a fascinating walk through the ages–from slavery, to segregation, to the black power movement, to modern times. Through the eyes of one mixed race woman, the author touches on major events in African American history, allowing the reader to experience them in real time. The story deepens when Stella decides to live as a white woman and raise her children as whites. As her family grows and develops within a changing society, Stella and her children reveal complex perspectives and attitudes that make it clear that it doesn’t matter who your ancestors were. Nothing is just simply black or white.”
“The third in a series, The Road to Freedom – Joseph’s Story is able to stand alone. However, in order to get the full experience of the story arc, it would be a good idea to start from the beginning. It was very well written. Historical without being boring. Accurate but not preachy. Brutal without over-dramatizing. It would be appropriate for teen and adult readers alike. In particular, I would recommend it for literature classes or history classes. It’s only 65 pages long and it provides ample discussion topics with authentic learning opportunities. Adults who want to read it for personal growth should absolutely do so. I finished this book days ago, and I’m still thinking about it.”
– Mama Pete
“If something is wrong, you don’t sit back and let the wrong continue. You go out and you do your part to change it.” If the above quote speaks to you, you should read this book. The cast of characters are mostly young teenagers who want to change the world, but first need a plan. They all have different life experiences and bring their own perspectives to what they want to accomplish, which is really good for showing the reader other aspects (instead of just the narrator’s point of view). Right away on their journey, the group encounters racism that affects them all, yet some more than others. There are no exaggerations on the violence depicted, which can be a wake-up call for readers who don’t have as much knowledge of this part of history. The story itself leads to further research by grabbing the reader’s interest in gaining more knowledge about this period of time.”
– Swimming Through Literature
“Yecheilyah is a gifted poet and writer of which I have had the pleasure of getting to know the last couple of years. She writes evocative literature dedicated to the promotion of African American culture and American literature.”
– Colleen Chesebro
“I consider myself and anyone else aware of her to be pretty lucky already as this author has a pretty powerful perspective and is more than capable of articulating her experiences and thought processes as it relates to the cultural upbringing of the African American experience. Her name is Yecheilyah Ysrayl.”
– Dottie Daniels