This book was informative without being dull. As well as general information, it follows the life of three 'migrants' from the south to the north. I've listened to it twice so far and will probably go back for a third listen as it is quite detailed. The narration is excellent, although sometimes it does swing from one topic to another a little abruptly. The history of how coloured people were treated is dealt with sympathetically and backed by events of actual people. Real life events are well woven with facts and figures so you don't get saturated with data. Would be a great book for students.
Robin Miles does a great job of characterising all the different people who appear in this book. The story is of African Americans who moved from the South to northern states between the 1920s and the 1960s.
However, as an audiobook it is rather slow and episodic (it's 22 hours) as we hear the same things over again, and would have been better read on the page.
Yes. I am recommending this book to friends and family. In reading this story of the Great Migration, I learned about my family. I was able to piece together things I knew of my family through this narrative and hence gain a greater understanding and appreciation.
I liked that individual stories were woven into a context of factual history.
Great performance by the narrator, but this is my first time listening to her.
I would use the same title as the book
Yes, I definitely would. This book is an amazing work of nonfiction. Her research was amazing and the way she developed our three main characters was beautiful. We cared about them through every moment of her struggle. As others have stated, the book did need to be edited more - there were many sections that were repetitive. Sometimes I almost felt the book came from several serializations as she felt the need to bring us up to speed with characters, incidents, history that she'd already stated. For such an amazing work, it does trouble me that her publisher and editor didn't pay more careful attention to these details.
I think Dr. Foster's drive out of LA to CA will stick with me. I cried as he attempted to find a motel to spend the night, struggled with him to stay awake when he realized he'd have to keep driving. These scenes captured the injustices of America during this period. I read afterwards that the author had recreated this...perhaps this is why she was able to capture the scenes so well.
Dr. Foster was probably my favorite - although there were many times I didn't like him. His obsession with appearances was troubling at times and it seems to me resulted in some bad decisions. But his ambition, his flair for the dramatic - all made for an entertaining storyline.
There were many - I think the violence and fear of the times came through as she described the story behind Ida Mae's and George's need to flee to the north. Both were fearful for their own safety and how can we not be ashamed that people were made to feel this way.
The author does a superb job at telling the narrative of 3 people in a factual way that connects with the heart!
For the first time in my life I feel like I understand the hardships and struggles Black American Society faced as a whole and the resulting negative effects on American Society we see today. You are able to relate to the 3 people in a personal, humane way. This book is very factual and does not paint any one person or people group as a problem.
Her vocal inflections bring the characters to life. She nails her accents and it REALLY adds to the book!!!
A MUST READ!!!
Audible obsessed lifelong learner.
Very powerful look at how racism and JimCrow laws lead to the dispersion to black society cluttered in the south to explainable patterns we have come to today. A moving read that fully pulled me in to the hatred that tried to keep a people back as they yearned for their place in America.
I was born in mid 1960's and grew up in desegregated florida. This book revealed facts about america that I would have never known otherwise. I grew up 50 miles south of Mims and race was rarely discussed, however it was always present. Knowledge and perspectives from both sides of racism are important if we are to ever completely eliminate hatred based solely on skin color. Perhaps that is too utopian a dream and may very well be the message that we gleam from the author. The characters sought a land void of racism, what they found was something different. Please do not miss this one.
Fascinating, well-told, surprising
The stories of the atrocities of the Jim Crow laws were shocking - all the more so because they were true.
She does different voices for the different characters very well, which helps clarify who is talking and makes it more enjoyable.
It is a long book - which works well for me with a 30 minute commute, but couldn't be done in one sitting.
Love history,mystery,true crime,love books especially audio.
I love history & this is an excellent book on the migration of African-Americans within this country. It is so good I have listened to it twice just to make sure I did not miss anything.
Every high school student should read an abridged version of this book!
An oral history, work of literature and academic study of Ida Mae, Robert, and George who all left the South with six million other African Americans between 1916--1970 to seek a better life in the North.
The book is 660 pages long and the author intertwines the stories of these three characters (who never meet each other) as they leave the South and faced the America of the North (New York and Detroit), Midwest (Chicago) and West (Los Angeles). The author tells their stories while also giving the story of the era. The author captures the people and an era in a way that makes you just want to keep reading this very long book.
It's a very insightful book about a part of American history that we tend to ignore and remains too little known to all.