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Another Country | [James Baldwin]

Another Country

Set in Greenwich Village, Harlem, and France, Another Country tells the story of the suicide of jazz-musician Rufus Scott and the friends who search for an understanding of his life and death, discovering uncomfortable truths about themselves along the way. Another Country is a work that is as powerful today as it was 40 years ago - and expertly narrated by Dion Graham.
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Publisher's Summary

First published in 1962, this is an emotionally intense novel of love, hatred, race, and liberal America in the 1960s, taking on the then-taboo themes of interracial couples, bisexuality, and extramarital affairs. Set in Greenwich Village, Harlem, and France, Another Country tells the story of the suicide of jazz-musician Rufus Scott and the friends who search for an understanding of his life and death, discovering uncomfortable truths about themselves along the way. Another Country is a work that is as powerful today as it was 40 years ago - and expertly narrated by Dion Graham.

©1990 Gloria Baldwin Karefa-Smart; (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks America

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (96 )
5 star
 (43)
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 (23)
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Overall
4.2 (52 )
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Story
4.3 (52 )
5 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Kenneth Calgary, Alberta, Canada 04-10-09
    Kenneth Calgary, Alberta, Canada 04-10-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    165
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    "Powerful and sad"

    In this novel Baldwin presents a realistic portrait of artistic young people in New York in the early 1960s. The most compelling character, the tormented black musician Rufus, is alive for only the first portion of the book, yet he casts his shadow over everything. Baldwin shows how even well-meaning whites who try to create friendship or love across the racial barrier often have no idea of the emotional sorrow they are up against or the further sorrow they may inadvertently cause. This novel also explores the conflicts that can arise among a group of struggling artists when one of their number becomes successful. As well, the novel includes some frank but well-written sex scenes, including homosexual encounters. Some may find this novel overly dark and full of conflict. Certainly, it is not a light or cheerful book, but it is an important work.

    15 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara Durham, NC, United States 10-02-10
    Barbara Durham, NC, United States 10-02-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
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    "Don't Expect Sweetness and Light"

    I first read this book in the early 70s at the behest of a friend who was trying to explain what it was like to be black and gay. I was overwhelmed by the beauty, the delicacy and the anger of Baldwin's words. I knew I would never forget how much pain and loneliness was part of that life. Baldwin's people were well delineated, but the plot was missing an ending.

    Hearing this book now, instead of reading, made the book as fresh as the first time I read it. Despite any faults inherent in the novel, I still recommend this book and looking past those faults into the heart of a nab who he felt he didn't belong.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lyndsey United States 11-29-11
    Lyndsey United States 11-29-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Reality in its purest form"

    This is a beautiful piece by Baldwin. So tainted that it is perfect. The narrator does a great job inflecting and changing pitches to keep the listener interested. hopefully Amazon will catch on and start using these voices for the text to speech option in Kindle! Great book, great audio, highly recommended.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    T Cyr Missoula, MT United States 07-24-13
    T Cyr Missoula, MT United States 07-24-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Outstanding Audio Book in Every Way"
    What did you love best about Another Country?

    This story is as powerful and provocative today as it was when it was first written. Baldwin paints a brilliant picture with his words filled with color and emotions, like listening to an extraordinary jazz piece. Graham add such vibrant life to the characters and creates a mood that often becomes hypnotic and memorizing. I was captivated from the first paragraph to the last word uttered. I was familiar with Baldwin from reading his other works some 30 years earlier. How did I ever miss this one? It's his masterpiece of vision and masterful story telling of an era long lost.

    This is not a novel for everyone, has themes of strong sexual situations, racism, and the violent nature of lost souls. But it's all the things l love that define the human condition.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Emmett, ID, United States 05-02-09
    Kathy Emmett, ID, United States 05-02-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Couldn't wade my way through this..."

    I made it half way through this audio book and simply couldn't keep going. The storyline is an interesting one but the author's over indulgence in using as many words possible in every description of every setting, character response and character insight eventually bogged me down to the point that I began to hate my ipod. I'm such a cheapskate...I was determined to finish the book so to not have wasted my money...but finally decided my sanity must be worth more! Call me shallow but I am now ready for some mindless mystery.

    2 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    danny United States 03-29-12
    danny United States 03-29-12
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    "Awful book"
    What would have made Another Country better?

    Have an actual plot or story and not just be character based


    Has Another Country turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Yes


    What about Dion Graham’s performance did you like?

    Change of voices and had an excellent tone


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Extreme disappointment


    0 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peggie Lansing, KS, United States 04-16-10
    Peggie Lansing, KS, United States 04-16-10 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Depressing!"

    I tried hard to get into the book because I don't like to waste my money, but after 3 hours I came to the conclusion that the money I spent for the book was far less than the cost of a full blown depression which might result from listening.

    It's disjointed and depressing. The characters' actions make little sense. Here's a man at the top of his game who acts willy nilly and can't understand when his actions throw him in the gutter.

    Best advice is to skip it. If you don't, have a therapist on stand-by.

    0 of 18 people found this review helpful
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