Yes - definitely. Great combination of a historical account and a compelling story.
Several parts stick out for me. One of my favorite parts is the account of his kidnapping and imprisonment. The story drew me in and took me on the journey from surprise, through acceptance and all the other emotions that he experienced.
I lost myself in his performance. I had the opportunity to listen on a long road trip that seemed to end too soon.
First is that such an incredible story is true and autobiographical. Yes, it is tragic, but the author intermingled the sweet with the bitter, so that the sweet became "comic relief" to the bitter and gave hope, although for some of Solomon Northrup's fellow kidnapping victims, hope came in relief after a too short life. His talent with the violin was part of that relief on the light side. The versatility and cleverness of Solomon, but also his refusal to suffer extraordinary abuse, along with his resourcefulness, added continuous interest to his story. The story is so well told and read...I often "rewound" and would re-listen to parts. I can hardly wait to see the 4-star movie version.
Possibly The Island Beneath the Sea, but that one is a number of individual stories along with one of the masses and is fiction.
Of course Solomon.
A slave beyond slavery...
Listen to it, if you haven't! I read about what is supposably happened to him after he was freed. His talents continued with his doing public speaking and he bought a property, but he became reckless and ambitious, and lost his property and wealth. It is conjectured that he may have gone in quest of the gold in the gold rush to the west. He was obviously never the same man as before being kidnapped.
The whole thing was great. I'm so happy he lived to tell his story.
There were parts that made me teary.
This story is nothing short of amazing. This book took me into the hardships and everyday life of freeborn man who was kidnapped in the the horrible world of slavery. The book was not written with hate. It was written as an account of an individuals personal experience.
I highly recommend this book.
In the top 3.
Platt's flight through the swamp.
The tearing away of little Emily from her mother.
During a Bogo sale this book piqued my interest. Then I discovered I live only 34 miles from the location of Northup's slavery! I was born in Alexandria,La. and have lived here nearly all of my life. I am familiar with the locations of all the places mentioned in the book. It's stunning to realize that the events in this book are so close geographically, and culturally to me. Even if this book weren't true, (and it is), it is still gripping and deeply moving. It made me to considering more the suffering of African Americans and the reasons why the Deep South culture is what it is today. Nevertheless, neither resentment nor prejudice comes from the pen of Northup, but only thankfulness and honesty.
A first hand account of life as it was in that time in history. The untiring voice of Louis Gossett Jr. brings to life the words of the author.
I happen to admire Lou Gossett as an actor. But, it has always been my opinion that only PROFESSIONAL narrators should be used for audiobooks. Mr. Gossett is a perfect example of lacking the ability to tell the story without it seeming to be a lecture. (Each sentence begins and ends with the same reflections.) Had I listened to this book first, I would never have seen the movie. (It was much better.) Sadly, this being a true story, I found it very disappointing that the main character, thriough the years of slavery, seemed to mellow and rarely showed his desire to flee or rebel against his inhuman condition. To witness such cruelty and yet, even when he was about to be freed; he says good-bye to his, 'masters.' Clearly, all of his pride and sense of honor had been beaten out of him. Worst, were his discriptions of the 'good masters,' who once a year gave a Christmas celebration for the slaves. Where in his life could a relatively intelligent young man, find any justification for one race holding another race in human bondage, allowing one race to become rich through the toil, sweat and sorrow of people working for scraps and treated worst than animals? That question was only asked by the white man who succeeded in helping him to return to a family who had not seen him for twelve years. He did express his frustration; but never the anger he should have felt.
I love literary fiction and I occasionally delve into non-fiction. I love books that are suspenseful and am really into well-told stories.
I saw the INCREDIBLE film… and I knew I had to read this book. It is lovingly narrated by Louis Gossett, Jr. (I met him one time!) and the story is just as gripping and moving and horrible/wonderful as the film. AND! If you loved the book, do not be afraid to see the film… it is a VERY faithful re-creation of the book. It is an AMAZING story of loss, anger, submission, living on nothing but wits, endurance and redemption. It's a book to be experienced. It's a "must-read".
It deserves a place on your shelf or in your Audible library right along with The Known World by Edward P Jones and Beloved by the incomparable Toni Morrison. It's WAY better than Uncle Tom's Cabin and much better than The Confessions of Nat Turner….
Get it! Listen to it! Love Soloman Northup! You will not regret reading this memoir.
This is an excellent, first-hand account of slavery in the American south written by a man who was kidnapped from his home in New York State and sold into slavery in Louisiana. Solomon Northup's story is a heartrending story of a man's patient fight for survival and freedom. Even his fair portrayal of 2 kind masters cannot balance the years he suffers in unrelenting, back-breaking labor, the unfathomable cruelty and unbelievable brutality of several of his masters, and his constant deep longing for freedom and his family. Louis Gossett, Jr.'s narration is as expert as you would expect. It is not a "performance" read, which I think works well with a first-person point of view.
I loved this story... it was reminicient of Federick Douglass. The story is very well read, Gossett is great! I can hardly wait to see the movie. A TERRIFIC LISTEN!
Solomon is my favorite character because when he was in charge of the slaves he found his way around the beatings.
His tone of voice makes everything come to life.