Audie Award Finalist, Solo Narration - Female, 2014
Audie Award Finalist, Biography/Memoir, 2014
The first Hispanic and third woman appointed to the United States Supreme Court, Sonia Sotomayor has become an instant American icon. Now, with a candor and intimacy never undertaken by a sitting Justice, she recounts her life from a Bronx housing project to the federal bench, a journey that offers an inspiring testament to her own extraordinary determination and the power of believing in oneself.
Here is the story of a precarious childhood, with an alcoholic father (who would die when she was nine) and a devoted but overburdened mother, and of the refuge a little girl took from the turmoil at home with her passionately spirited paternal grandmother. But it was when she was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes that the precocious Sonia recognized she must ultimately depend on herself. She would learn to give herself the insulin shots she needed to survive and soon imagined a path to a different life. With only television characters for her professional role models, and little understanding of what was involved, she determined to become a lawyer, a dream that would sustain her on an unlikely course, from valedictorian of her high school class to the highest honors at Princeton, Yale Law School, the New York County District Attorney’s office, private practice, and appointment to the Federal District Court before the age of 40. Along the way we see how she was shaped by her invaluable mentors, a failed marriage, and the modern version of extended family she has created from cherished friends and their children. Through her still-astonished eyes, America’s infinite possibilities are envisioned anew in this warm and honest book, destined to become a classic of self-invention and self-discovery.
©2013 Sonia Sotomayor (P)2013 Random House Audio
What I love is that we get to know about her life story before the bench. It says a lot about her humility. She is a wonderful storyteller and I'm so glad that she allowed us to get to know her in this way.
I loved that she talked about real life issues that impact many families. She covered alcoholism, juvenile diabetes, poverty and the myriad of obstacles that many young latinos face along the road to higher education from not knowing how to study to not knowing they system.
She brings flavor and sounds a bit like the Justice given their backgrounds so at times I felt like it was the Justice herself reading it.
Yes. When she gives advice to women about neglecting their partners. It's so true and yet so frustrating to create that balance.
Every young latina with aspirations to enter the legal world must read this story.
Inspirational interesting, humble
Ms. Sotomayor is grounded. She attributes her success to hard work and the support and love of others.
For the whole of Moreno's performance I felt as if I were listening to Sotomayor herself.
Absolutely. This is a compelling listen. Sonia Sotomayor tells her story with such honesty and candor.
When Sonia Sotomayor described her initial lengthy stay in the hospital (after her diagnosis of diabetes) and it culminated in her outburst into tears, at which moment, her usually occupied-with-work mother deftly intervenes with a definitive and commanding "Alright, that's enough!" to the hospital staff. I saw that moment as pivotal. It told me, "Yes, my mother is here for me and yes, she loves me."
I liked the quality of her voice and her diction. I liked that she didn't overemphasize the Spanish words with a heavy Latin accent. She pronounced each word, English and Spanish, with equal precision, authenticity, and clarity.
It made me laugh and cry, but most notably, it made me feel warm inside and it made me feel connected to the author; so in that way, I found it to be tremendously inspiring. I am taking the inspiration that no matter the circumstances into which you are born, you can climb out of it. Yes, it's possible!
I loved that Sonia Sotomayor opened the book with her own voice! That was a like icing on a cake.
Inspiring and reflective. Family is who we are.
When she admits her upbringing left her lacking understanding of certain situations, it was moving.
Sometimes when she changed voice volume, I could not understand her.
If the right doors are opened for you, unlimited potential is yours if you work,work,work.
I have new appreciation for having a voice and perspective as hers on the Supreme Court.
Sonia's over coming a rough childhood.
Sonia of course, the honest way she told her story.
this was a great reading.
That would be great.
Sonia show kids from humble beginning can still become great people of the world.
I felt the narrator's inflections treated this story as a child's fable instead of emphasizing the serious nature of the formative years of a supreme court justice. Perhaps the narrator could not have read this story in any other way because of the way the story was written.
Ms. Sotomayor overcame many economic and personal difficulties to rise to her position. It troubles me that the foundations set early in her childhood reflect on her interpretation of the law. I have no doubt that she is intellectually capable of interpreting the law. I question her tendency to look on the world in a way that acknowledges social condition as mostly negative and something that most be overcome in this country.
I was an english major who went on to a masters in Social Work and a Ph.D in Psychology. Learned literary criticism in univ. prep. classes.
Yes, Rita Morena (the reader) understands the Puerto Rican experience having lived it herself and Sonia Sotomayor is a great writer. Who knew! It's a miracle that she rose to being a Supreme Court judge from such humble beginnings fraught with a myriad obstacles.
Overcoming the Diabetes diagnosis.
I loved the scenes with her grandmother (reading poetry, seances, matriarchal duties).
Rita Moreno plays the older Sotomayor with the flair of experience
This is a must read for everyone who cares about women.
She is so real....good, bad, scared, overly confident and her ability, I felt, to show us who she is and why....it is all there.
Sandra Day O Connor's memoir (Lazy B) was similar and though I enjoyed it, it did not hold my attention in the same way.
I loved the Spanish language, the intonations, the beauty of hearing the language used in the way I am sure the author approves totally. I do not speak Spanish but I could listen to Ms. Moreno speaking anytime.
No. I often listen as I am walking in the morning so tend to listen in 45 minute segments and that has worked well. There is just so much detail, I have enjoyed not rushing through.
I recommend this with no reservations and I do not believe I would have enjoyed "just" reading it as much.
Having Rita Moreno narrate was an inspired selection. Ms Sotomayor's early life isn't exactly riveting but it was a welcomed peek into what compels and propels a person to reach for the stars - and get there. It was an easy listen and Ms Moreno kept the pace and the emotional balance perfect.
It doesn't examine her current life (ends just as she is being chosen for Supreme Court) but it certainly gives a good example of her basic values and beliefs that guide her.
Highly recommend it - especially to young women.
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