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The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fatesby Wes Moore
The Other Wes Moore is the fascinating tale of two men who shared a name and a birthplace; their lives started out in similar circumstances and ended up very differently (one a Rhodes Scholar, the other serving a life sentence in jail). A moving, intelligent, and gripping work.
Synopses & Reviews
Two kids with the same name lived in the same decaying city. One went on to be a Rhodes Scholar, decorated combat veteran, White House Fellow, and business leader. The other is serving a life sentence in prison. Here is the story of two boys and the journey of a generation.
In December 2000, the Baltimore Sun ran a small piece about Wes Moore, a local student who had just received a Rhodes Scholarship. The same paper also ran a series of articles about four young men who had allegedly killed a police officer in a spectacularly botched armed robbery. The police were still hunting for two of the suspects who had gone on the lam, a pair of brothers. One was named Wes Moore.
Wes just couldn't shake off the unsettling coincidence, or the inkling that the two shared much more than space in the same newspaper. After following the story of the robbery, the manhunt, and the trial to its conclusion, he wrote a letter to the other Wes, now a convicted murderer serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole. His letter tentatively asked the questions that had been haunting him: Who are you? How did this happen?
That letter led to a correspondence and relationship that have lasted for several years. Over dozens of letters and prison visits, Wes discovered that the other Wes had had a life not unlike his own: Both had grown up in similar neighborhoods and had had difficult childhoods, both were fatherless; they'd hung out on similar corners with similar crews, and both had run into trouble with the police. At each stage of their young lives they had come across similar moments of decision, yet their choices would lead them to astonishingly different destinies.
Told in alternating dramatic narratives that take readers from heart-wrenching losses to moments of surprising redemption, The Other Wes Moore tells the story of a generation of boys trying to find their way in a hostile world.
From the Hardcover edition.
Traces the parallel lives of two youths with the same name born a year apart in the same community, describing how the author grew up to be a Rhodes Scholar, White House Fellow and promising business leader while his counterpart suffered a life of violence and imprisonment.
BONUS: This edition contains a new afterword and a The Other Wes Moore discussion guide.
The chilling truth is that his story could have been mine. Thetragedy is that my story could have been his.
Two kids named Wes Moore were born blocks apart within a year of each other. Both grew up fatherless in similar Baltimore neighborhoodsand had difficult childhoods; both hung out on street corners with their crews; both ran into trouble with the police. How, then, did one grow up to be a Rhodes Scholar, decorated veteran, White House Fellow, and businessleader, while the other ended up a convicted murderer serving a life sentence? Wes Moore, the author of this fascinating book, sets out to answer this profound question. In alternating narratives that take readers fromheart-wrenching losses to moments of surprising redemption, The Other Wes Moore tells the story of a generation of boys trying to find their way in a hostile world.
About the Author
Wes Moore is a Rhodes Scholar and a combat veteran of Afghanistan. As a White House Fellow, he worked as a special assistant to Secretary Condoleezza Rice at the State Department. He was a featured speaker at the 2008 Democratic National Convention, was named one of Ebony magazine’s Top 30 Leaders Under 30 (2007), and, most recently, was dubbed one of the top young business leaders in New York by Crain’s New York Business. He works in New York City.
Table of Contents
Part I. Fathers and angels : Is daddy coming with us? — In search of home — Foreign ground — Part II. Choices and second chances : Marking territory — Lost — Hunted — Part III. Paths taken and expectations fulfilled : The land that God forgot — Surrounded — Epilogue — Afterword — A call to action / Tavis Smiley.
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