A classic, brilliant and layered novel that has been at the heart of racial identity discourse in America for almost a century.
Clare Kendry leads a dangerous life. Fair, elegant, and ambitious, she is married to a white man unaware of her African American heritage and has severed all ties to her past. Clare's childhood friend, Irene Redfield, just as light-skinned, has chosen to remain within the African American community, but refuses to acknowledge the racism that continues to constrict her family's happiness. A chance encounter forces both women to confront the lies they have told others - and the secret fears they have buried within themselves.
Nella Larsen was a black American novelist and a major figure in the Harlem Renaissance. Her two novels, Quicksand (1928) and Passing (1929), were brief, but to this day are at the heart of up-to-the-minute debates over racial and sexual identity. From these two books alone, she is regarded as one of the most important black female novelists in American history.