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Publisher's Summary

In this honest and stunning novel, James Baldwin has given America a moving story of love in the face of injustice. Told through the eyes of Tish, a 19-year-old girl in love with Fonny, a young sculptor who is the father of her child, Baldwin's story mixes the sweet and the sad.

Tish and Fonny have pledged to get married, but Fonny is falsely accused of a terrible crime and is imprisoned. Their families set out to clear his name, and as they face an uncertain future, the young lovers experience a kaleidoscope of emotions - affection, despair, and hope.

In a love story that evokes the blues, where passion and sadness are inevitably intertwined, Baldwin has created two characters so alive and profoundly realized that they are unforgettably ingrained in the American psyche.

©1974 James Baldwin. © renewed 2002 by Gloria Baldwin Karefa-Smart (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The narrator did her thing, I love it!!!

This book is a mirror of my life. From jail, their ages, their families, the charges, the innocence, to the mother venturing out and seeking truth. I am with my husband this very day 23 years later. I know this kind of love, Mr. Baldwin nailed it. Well done.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Exquisite Narration

The narration captures the range of voices and adopts throughout the personas of Baldwin’s female characters. Such a tender story delivered tenderly, yet Baldwin’s poetic depictions of daily violence, subjugation, hunger, wariness, fear are not drowned by the protagonist’s sweetness. Baldwin drives us into his world view and sculpts a girl-woman in words.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Absolutely Amazing

This book was amazing. James Baldwin has such a way with words. I will definitely come back to listen to this book a few times!!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Beautiful Timeless Story

It's a nice story, not as twisty as most of Baldwin's books....I kept waiting for him to really go deeper...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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That's it?

Beautiful story of love , racism, courage and strength . I was left wanting there to be more. The ending was a bit vague

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A Lyrical Masterpiece!

I lloved everything about this book! The clarity and lyricism with which James Baldwin wrote is simply unmatched. It had been more than 30 years since I first read the book. It won't be nearly that long before I read it again. Bravo!

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Love Baldwin!!

I loved James Baldwin as a teenager and am now reading his books again. I appreciate him for so many reasons, but the Black experience is at the list. The characters in this book are well developed and the story is very real...even today.

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Outstanding Narration but.....

This was an alright book and Ms. Turpin did an outstanding job as the narrator. She can really make a book come to life. The story itself was good it dealt with the same issues (racial inequalities) we struggle with today however, the story ended so abruptly. There should have been more, I really dislike books were important questions are left unanswered and you the reader are left to make assumptions on what happened.

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Incredible novel

This story is written from a young woman's perspective of how the criminal justice system destroys African-American families.