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Twelve Years a Slave Audiobook

Twelve Years a Slave

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Publisher's Summary

Official Movie Tie-in Audiobook for the Academy Award's Best Picture and Golden Globe's Best Drama winner.

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller.

In this riveting landmark autobiography which reads like a novel, Academy Award and Emmy winner Louis Gossett, Jr., masterfully transports us to 1840s New York, Washington, D.C., and Louisiana to experience the kidnapping and twelve years of bondage of Solomon Northup, a free man of color. Twelve Years a Slave, published in 1853, was an immediate bombshell in the national debate over slavery leading up to the Civil War. It validated Harriett Beecher Stowe’s fictional account of Southern slavery in Uncle Tom’s Cabin, which had become the best-selling American book in history a few years earlier and significantly changed public opinion in favor of abolition. Experience our official movie tie-in audiobook for the award-winning motion picture, directed by Steve McQueen and starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Brad Pitt, Paul Giamatti, Michael Fassbender, and Lupita Nyong'o. This audio edition with an accompanying custom map is based on the research of Dr. Sue Eakin, the nationally recognized authority on Solomon Northup who spent a lifetime authenticating his story.

Hard working Solomon Northup, an educated free man of color in 1841, enjoys family life with his wife and three children in Saratoga, New York. He delights his community with his fiddle playing and antic spirit, and has positive expectations of all he meets. When he is deceived by “circus promoters” to accompany them to a musical gig in the nation’s capital, his joyful life takes an unimaginable turn. He awakens in shackles to find he has been drugged, kidnapped and bound for the slave block in D.C.

After Solomon is shipped 1,000 miles to New Orleans, he is assigned his slave name and quickly learns that the mere utterance of his true origin or rights as a freeman are certain to bring severe punishment or death. While he endures the brutal life of a slave in Louisiana’s isolated Bayou Boeuf plantation country, he must learn how to play the system and plot his escape home.

For 12 years, his fine mind captures the reality of slavery in stunning detail, as we learn about the characters that populate plantation society and the intrigues of the bayou – from the collapse of a slave rebellion resulting in mass hangings due to traitorous slave Lew Cheney, to the tragic abuse of his friend Patsey because of Mrs. Epps’ jealousy of her husband’s sexual exploitation of his pretty young slave.

When Solomon finally finds a sympathizing friend who risks his life to secret a letter to the North, a courageous rescue attempt ensues that could either compound Solomon’s suffering, or get him back to the arms of his family.

AUTHENTICATION: Northup’s harrowing first-hand account was authenticated from decades of research by Dr. Sue Eakin, who rediscovered the original narrative as a 12-year old in 1931 and made it her life’s work.

For additional audio clips, background info and images, see our website at www.12YearsASlaveBook.com.

Download your unique free map based on Solomon's narrative.

©2013 Eakin Films & Publishing (P)2013 Eakin Films & Publishing

What the Critics Say

“...Gossett infuses the words with a quiet, seething power." (AudioFile, 2013)

“I can never read his account of his days in slavery, of his independence of spirit, of his determination to be free…without believing that it would make a difference in today's world if our contemporaries knew of such a man as Solomon Northup." (Dr. John Hope Franklin, past president of the American Historical Association, best-selling author, recipient of Presidential Medal of Freedom, nation's highest civilian honor)

"[T]he extraordinary narrative of Solomon Northup is the most remarkable book that was ever issued from the American press." (Detroit Tribune, original 1853 review)
"Its truth is far greater than fiction." (Frederick Douglass, famous writer, former slave and abolitionist)
"It will be read extensively, both at the North and the South." (New York Tribune, 1853, published by Horace Greeley)

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (1931 )
5 star
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4.6 (1753 )
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4.4 (1751 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Amazon Customer 11-29-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
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    2
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    Story
    "Great"

    A story of strength and finally triumph. Glad I listened to this story I don't think I could have handled it visually.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 11-27-15
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    1
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    "Recommended By a Friend"

    A dear African American friend of mine encouraged me to read the book Twelve Years a Slave. I had some knowledge about the extreme abuse slaves endured throughout their lives and the book further enforced the fact that African Americans were treated inhumanely. How one human being could inflict such pain on another human being is beyond me.

    I loved the history of that era and the way places and locations were described. It was easy to listen to and I didn't want to stop because it was so interesting so I listened to the whole book in one setting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brandon 10-11-15
    Brandon 10-11-15 Member Since 2016
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    2
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    "great/sad story"

    just read, enjoy it, learn from it, appreciate your freedom. ........ very good narrator at best

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    colt 08-21-15
    colt 08-21-15 Member Since 2015
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    1
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    "Amazing book and amazing story."

    I'll never understand how human beings were able to treat other human beings the way they were. God made us all equal and I am thankful that this great nation realizes that now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kelly Hilton 07-06-15 Member Since 2014
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    25
    7
    Overall
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    Story
    "Slow start"

    Slow start , but eventually I got into it and Louis Gossett has a really charismatic voice

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    WJ Walters 06-10-15
    WJ Walters 06-10-15
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    2
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    "Incredible!"

    What a phenomenal accounting of the injustices of slavery. Well written. Love the narration by Mr. Gossett.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joe Houston, TX, United States 05-17-15
    Joe Houston, TX, United States 05-17-15 Member Since 2016

    Born in Ohio, lived in California, Alaska, and now Texas

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Maybe I expected too much"

    I really looked forward to listening to this story, but for some reason didn't become as invested as I thought I would be. While the history lesson is outstanding, I wasn't as inspired as I expected to be.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Leavitt 05-06-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ""Institution of Slavery""

    In this biography it was stunning to find out the roll of religion in accepting slavery as well as the use of Biblical passages to promote abusive treatment of these men, women and children. I am aghast that slavery was the only life option for a black person in the South and their fate was tied to the whims of their "masters". Very powerful firsthand account of being a slave in America in the mid 1800's.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tammy N. 05-05-15
    Tammy N. 05-05-15 Member Since 2010
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    13
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    "sad time"

    I loved the story. how sad people could treat other people in such a cruel way, the slave owners should have gotten a taste of their own medicine

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Garfield Hilton Head, Sc. 04-14-15
    Garfield Hilton Head, Sc. 04-14-15
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    5
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    "Great book!"
    Where does Twelve Years a Slave rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I would rate this audio version 8 out of 10. The story is quite incredible-I had seen the movie so knew what to expect but felt the narrator (Loius Gossett Jnr.) was perhaps a little off in the retelling of it-my personal opinion as it took me a while to get into it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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