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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Classic, 2014

Born to a poor couple who were tenant farmers on a plantation in Mississippi, Anne Moody lived through some of the most dangerous days of the pre-civil rights era in the South. The week before she began high school came the news of Emmet Till's lynching. Before then, she had "known the fear of hunger, hell, and the Devil. But now there was…the fear of being killed just because I was black." In that moment was born the passion for freedom and justice that would change her life.

An all-A student whose dream of going to college is realized when she wins a basketball scholarship, she finally dares to join the NAACP in her junior year. Through the NAACP and later through CORE and SNCC she has first-hand experience of the demonstrations and sit-ins that were the mainstay of the civil rights movement, and the arrests and jailings, the shotguns, fire hoses, police dogs, billy clubs, and deadly force that were used to destroy it.

A deeply personal story but also a portrait of a turning point in our nation's destiny, this autobiography lets us see history in the making, through the eyes of one of the footsoldiers in the civil rights movement.

©1968 Anne Moody (P)2012 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Simply one of the best, Anne Moody's autobiography is an eloquent, moving testimonial to... Courage." (Chicago Tribune)

What members say

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  • Philomena
  • Chicago, IL, United States
  • 01-03-13

A Gripping, Visceral Account of 1960's Reality

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

There were many times during this story when I froze in place, put my hand over my mouth, and felt my eyes well with tears...but don't mistake it for some sort of a 'sappy sob story.'

Any additional comments?

This is one of the best credits I've ever spent. I couldn't take my headphones off! I even turned off my phone, so I wouldn't be disturbed. There is not one single boring word. The entire story is alive - pulling you in, triggering emotions you didn't even know you had, forcing you to experience an ugly part of American history, and opening your eyes to the true, dirty reality of racism. <br/><br/>The narrator is fantastic - I cannot praise her enough. She reads it like it's her own personal story. Her voice is smooth and pleasant and displays a brilliant full spectrum of emotions. I could listen to her all day and never get tired. <br/><br/>You will NOT regret this selection.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Meh. Interesting and unique persective, BUT....

Would you try another book from Anne Moody and/or Lisa Reneé Pitts?

While the historical perspective is excellent and insightful, I struggled a lot with disliking the protagonist. Anne Moody spends an inordinate amount of time telling us how she was the prettiest, the smartest, the best basketball player on the team, was wanted by all the boys, and so on ad nauseam. She is temperamental, irritable, and critical with almost everyone and everything in her life. Her mother, her father, her stepmother, teachers, coaches, principals, deans, fellow Civil Rights workers, etc.

What was most disappointing about Anne Moody’s story?

Her very obvious vanity and how she speaks very disparagingly about almost everyone. Her bragging and negativity are such a large part of her writing that it is very distracting.

What does Lisa Reneé Pitts bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I liked the narration and thought it was well done.

Was Coming of Age in Mississippi worth the listening time?

Meh. I guess. It is good to have a better grasp of the events that took place and how hard Civil Rights workers worked toward change and how frustrating and dangerous it was for them.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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saved a lot of time with my school assignment

Was an amazing story of strength and courage. I wonder what became of the author after the end of her story.

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brought tears to my eyes

I had to write an essay for my history class and this was the book of choice. I am so glad my professor chose this book for us. it is such an amazing story that is heart wrenching

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Wow!

This book was so well written that I could “see” the places and people. I could understand each person’s perspective, while rooting for the success of the author.

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Amazing

this book is the BEST !!! i couldn't stop reading it.. the more Ms Moody told her story.. the more i wanted to know.

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Pitt's performance was one of the best

While the reader did very well, there were times in the story where I wondered if the title shouldn't be changed to "The making of a Bigot"

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very good i really loved the vook. i recommed

i loved it it was amazingly perfect i will recommend it it made very thing great

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Soul wrenching yet beautiful

The book wonderfully captures the essence of Anne Moody and her struggles from her early childhood up to her post-college years.
You are thrown into a world many, but also few have truly experienced -- the gruesome violence and the continuous torment faced by blacks in the South. By the end of the book, you are left deeply saddened and troubled by what African Americans had to endure for the pursuit of universal freedom, and left questioning if American society today has truly "overcome".

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the truth hurts when it's real

not your average sunshine and rainbows type of book. let's learn to love each other.