Black Cake: A Novel

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
February 2022
12 hours 2 minutes
NOW A HULU STREAMING SERIES • NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • READ WITH JENNA BOOK CLUB PICK AS FEATURED ON TODAY • Two estranged siblings delve into their mother’s hidden past—and how it all connects to her traditional Caribbean black cake—in this immersive family saga, “a character-driven, multigenerational story that’s meant to be savored” (Time).
“Wilkerson transports you across the decades and around the globe accompanied by complex, wonderfully drawn characters.”—Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times bestselling author of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Daisy Jones & The Six, and Malibu Rising

ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: Oprah Daily, NPR, BuzzFeed, Glamour, PopSugar, Book Riot, She Reads

We can’t choose what we inherit. But can we choose who we become?

In present-day California, Eleanor Bennett’s death leaves behind a puzzling inheritance for her two children, Byron and Benny: a black cake, made from a family recipe with a long history, and a voice recording. In her message, Eleanor shares a tumultuous story about a headstrong young swimmer who escapes her island home under suspicion of murder. The heartbreaking tale Eleanor unfolds, the secrets she still holds back, and the mystery of a long-lost child challenge everything the siblings thought they knew about their lineage and themselves.

Can Byron and Benny reclaim their once-close relationship, piece together Eleanor’s true history, and fulfill her final request to “share the black cake when the time is right”? Will their mother’s revelations bring them back together or leave them feeling more lost than ever?

Charmaine Wilkerson’s debut novel is a story of how the inheritance of betrayals, secrets, memories, and even names can shape relationships and history. Deeply evocative and beautifully written, Black Cake is an extraordinary journey through the life of a family changed forever by the choices of its matriarch.
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Judy P.

This was one of the best books I’ve read since January. The plot was something I’ve never read about and it totally held my interest, a little over 12 hours in two days. It’s told from so many different pov. My only problem was there were so many characters I sometimes forgot who belonged where!!!

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Christine S.

I didn’t think the story was… much of a story? It was meant to be dramatic but… want? I don’t know.

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Ivie A.

good novel.. draws you in from start to finish

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Beautifully written and narrated. I love a good story about families that are lost and found. Such wonderful storytelling of generations and their viewpoints.

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S M.

This book is exhilarating, a great read!

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Marie C.

Interesting read, journey of emigrants

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LaToya L.

Great book! I like how the story go back and forth between the past and present.

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This has made its way to my top 5! This is a book club MUST!!!

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Rhonda M.

The writing was beautiful. The story was creative and original. I enjoyed the food and the history. There were a lot of characters. At times it was difficult to keep up, but I enjoyed it.

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The book was great.

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Anita S.

This book was riveting from beginning to end. The revelation of each character and their individual emotional histories was perfection. The historical backdrop of their culture, the description of their journeys both in miles and geography as well as personal growth will cause you to reflect, learn, and be inspired. The author’s care in providing context for the time and political climate(s) they each navigated was wonderfully done. But it is the people and ultimately the love that will draw you in and enfold you in the most hope-filled way…

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Ann P.

Read this book! The author skillfully weaves a dramatic and entertaining tale about the uncertainty of life. She also touches on important themes, such as race and women’s rights, but with an intelligent and light hand. You will cry and smile. A beautiful book!

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Great story, I couldn’t put it down, I definitely shed some tears and was sad for it to end

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I really enjoyed this book. The history plus storyline was very engaging.

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Latoya L.

Whew... Get this book. It addresses Love, arranged marriage, the black diaspora in food and people that help shape cultural traditions. It highlights how some so called claim things as theirs when it's been stolen from other cultures hence the title Black Cake. When all we got to do is look back a thousand years and it will divulge the truth. It also talks about how surfing was a black Caribbean sport but has been white washed as with many things. This author took on a journey of friendship and love that permeates all boundaries. And how true love never dies! Money talks, adoption, and how it was handled back in time and how the birth mothers were fooled and tricked into adoption and threatened to be called and institutionized if they spoke up. Upon death you find out about of things that were hidden, even your mere existence. Again the book was everything, unputdownable. #Book19of2022 #Bookworm #whatsnext

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Great story with characters that bring you to tears in one paragraph then take you to a place of cheering them on! This book will stay with me for a long time and I'll miss it!

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Loved this book!!

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