Two nineteenth-century Brazilian women struggle to lead a life on their own terms.
In the first story, a young woman newly emancipated refuses to marry at her former owner's instruction. In the second, a wealthy matriarch tries to endow a family of her ex-slaves with resources for a free life. Lauderdale draws from legal and other documents to tell as much of the stories as can be known. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)