Quacko54, January 3, 2013 (view all comments by Quacko54)
This book is a wonderful combination of history,oral history and just rich human stories of people we are honored to know about. Ms Wilkerson has done a magnificent job of researching people and their history right up to the present moment. This book fills in the massive gap of what African-Americans have gone through in their history of our country. The great story of people's migrations from the South to other parts of the country are detailed, well explored and give a rich sense of what it was like to come from backgrounds that were dealing with relentless racism, violence and the day to day stress of just being able to stay alive due to the racist attitudes and violent behavior that is still present in our culture. One of the best books I have ever read.
Shannon Mauldin, September 27, 2012 (view all comments by Shannon Mauldin)
Most people know that many African-Americans moved North after the Civil War. This is the first book, however, to widen the scope and look at this trend as an important historical and cultural phenomenon occurring over a 100 year period, and one that still has ramifications in today's world. Told through the voices and stories of 3 people who went North, reading this books feels like listening to family stories by the fireplace.
This one changed the framing of black-white relations in the American 'not-south' so that I better understand many of the dynamics that were previously opaque to me. Isabel Wilkerson did a FINE (as in really good, not just passable) job in bringing her lead personalities to life, letting history speak for itself.
SandyPP, August 24, 2012 (view all comments by SandyPP)
I've read a lot about the South and thought I knew something about segregation and what life was like for Blacks there. Not! From the escape (yes for some of them!) to what life was like after migration, Wilkerson has written a story that every American needs to read. She follows three particular migrants and enriches it with brief stories of others and historical data. A great read.
odijooonpurpose, March 27, 2012 (view all comments by odijooonpurpose)
This book is an important one. It reframed race relations in the US-not south for me in a way that I very much appreciate. This was powerful & is on my list of books I'm recommending to everyone! You must read it!!
The Warmth of Other Suns is a fascinating epic narrative of the Great Migration by the brilliant and beautiful Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson.
by Janet Maslin, The New York Times,
"A landmark piece of nonfiction...sure to hold many surprises for readers of any race or experience....A mesmerizing book that warrants comparison to The Promised Land, Nicholas Lemann's study of the Great Migration's early phase, and Common Ground, J. Anthony Lukas's great, close-range look at racial strife in Boston....[Wilkerson's] closeness with, and profound affection for, her subjects reflect her deep immersion in their stories and allow the reader to share that connection."
by John Stauffer, Wall Street Journal,
"The Warmth of Other Suns is a brilliant and stirring epic, the first book to cover the full half-century of the Great Migration....Wilkerson combines impressive research...with great narrative and literary power. Ms. Wilkerson does for the Great Migration what John Steinbeck did for the Okies in his fiction masterpiece, The Grapes of Wrath; she humanizes history, giving it emotional and psychological depth."
by David Oshinsky, The New York Times Book Review (Cover Review),
"[A] massive and masterly account of the Great Migration....A narrative epic rigorous enough to impress all but the crankiest of scholars, yet so immensely readable as to land the author a future place on Oprah's couch."
by Jill Lepore, The New Yorker,
"[A] deeply affecting, finely crafted and heroic book....Wilkerson has taken on one of the most important demographic upheavals of the past century — a phenomenon whose dimensions and significance have eluded many a scholar — and told it through the lives of three people no one has ever heard of....This is narrative nonfiction, lyrical and tragic and fatalist. The story exposes; the story moves; the story ends. What Wilkerson urges, finally, isn't argument at all; it's compassion. Hush, and listen."
by Lynell George, Los Angeles Times,
"The Warmth of Other Suns is epic in its reach and in its structure. Told in a voice that echoes the magic cadences of Toni Morrison or the folk wisdom of Zora Neale Hurston's collected oral histories, Wilkerson's book pulls not just the expanse of the migration into focus but its overall impact on politics, literature, music, sports — in the nation and the world."
by David Shribman, Boston Globe,
"One of the most lyrical and important books of the season."
by The Washington Post,
"[An] extraordinary and evocative work."
by O, The Oprah Magazine,
"Scholarly but very readable, this book, for all its rigor, is so absorbing, it should come with a caveat: Pick it up only when you can lose yourself entirely."
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