Octavia E. Butler


Jo says: 

Defying the norms of the sci-fi genre by exploring themes of race, power, gender and class, Octavia Butler’s books feel totally modern.

The protagonist Dana, a strong, believable black woman, gets pulled back in time to save her ancestor who happens to be a white slave owner. As she lands back in 1815 she instantly loses all her rights as a human being as without papers her existence is illegal, so we feel first hand the injustice and prejudice the author experienced as a black person and as a woman. This is a roller coaster of a read, the writing is so visual I can still picture scenes from it and Octavia Butler explores themes such as empathy, love as political resistance and adapting to change, making this is a must read.

See also Emergent Strategy by adrienne maree brown: radical self/society help inspired by the philosophies of Octavia Butler.

In stock


Octavia E. Butler’s ground-breaking masterpiece, with an original foreword by Ayòbámi Adébáyò.

‘The marker you should judge all other time-travelling narratives by’ GUARDIAN

‘[Her] evocative, often troubling, novels explore far-reaching issues of race, sex, power and, ultimately, what it means to be human’ NEW YORK TIMES

‘No novel I’ve read this year has felt as relevant, as gut-wrenching or as essential . . . If you’ve ever tweeted “All Lives Matter“, someone needs to shove Kindred into your hand, and quickly’ CAROLINE O’DONOGHUE

In 1976, Dana dreams of being a writer. In 1815, she is assumed a slave.

When Dana first meets Rufus on a Maryland plantation, he’s drowning. She saves his life – and it will happen again and again.

Neither of them understands his power to summon her whenever his life is threatened, nor the significance of the ties that bind them.

And each time Dana saves him, the more aware she is that her own life might be over before it’s even begun.

This is the extraordinary story of two people bound by blood, separated by so much more than time.


‘Unnervingly prescient and wise’ YAA GYASI

‘Butler’s prose, always pared back to the bone, delineates the painful paradoxes of metamorphosis with compelling precision’ GUARDIAN

‘Octavia Butler was a visionary’ VIOLA DAVIS

‘One of the most significant literary artists of the twentieth century. One cannot exaggerate the impact she has had’ JUNOT DIAZ

‘An icon of the Afrofuturism world, envisioning literary realms that placed black characters front and center’ VANITY FAIR

‘Butler writes with such a familiarity that the alien is welcome and intriguing. She really artfully exposes our human impulse to self-destruct’ LUPITA NYONG’O

Additional information

Weight0.226 kg
Dimensions19.6 × 13 × 2.4 cm