The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration

The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration

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"A brilliant and stirring epic . . . 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."--John Stauffer, The Wall Street Journal

NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times -USA Today - O: The Oprah Magazine - Publishers Weekly - Salon - Newsday -The Daily Beast

In this beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities, in search of a better life. From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data and official records, to write this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.

With stunning historical detail, Wilkerson tells this story through the lives of three unique individuals: Ida Mae Gladney, who in 1937 left sharecropping and prejudice in Mississippi for Chicago, where she achieved quiet blue-collar success and, in old age, voted for Barack Obama when he ran for an Illinois Senate seat; sharp and quick-tempered George Starling, who in 1945 fled Florida for Harlem, where he endangered his job fighting for civil rights, saw his family fall, and finally found peace in God; and Robert Foster, who left Louisiana in 1953 to pursue a medical career, the personal physician to Ray Charles as part of a glitteringly successful medical career, which allowed him to purchase a grand home where he often threw exuberant parties.

Wilkerson brilliantly captures their first treacherous and exhausting cross-country trips by car and train and their new lives in colonies that grew into ghettos, as well as how they changed these cities with southern food, faith, and culture and improved them with discipline, drive, and hard work. Both a riveting microcosm and a major assessment, The Warmth of Other Suns is a bold, remarkable, and riveting work, a superb account of an "unrecognized immigration" within our own land. Through the breadth of its narrative, the beauty of the writing, the depth of its research, and the fullness of the people and lives portrayed herein, this book is destined to become a classic.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New Yorker - The Washington Post - The Economist - Boston Globe - San Francisco Chronicle - Chicago Tribune - Entertainment Weekly - Philadelphia Inquirer - The Guardian - The Seattle Times - St. Louis Post-Dispatch - The Christian Science Monitor

Author: Isabel Wilkerson
Publisher: Random House
Published: 09/07/2010
Pages: 640
Binding Type: Hardcover
Weight: 2.21lbs
Size: 9.48h x 6.41w x 1.52d
ISBN: 9780679444329
Award: ALA Notable Books - Winner
Award: Hurston/Wright LEGACY Award - Winner
Award: National Book Critics Circle Award - Winner
Award: New England Book Award - Winner
Award: Literary Award - Runner-Up
Award: Lukas Prize Project - Winner
Award: Dayton Literary Peace Prize - Runner-Up

Review Citation(s):
Entertainment Weekly 03/25/2011 pg. 83
Library Journal Prepub Alert 04/15/2010 pg. 60
Kirkus Reviews 07/01/2010 pg. 615
Publishers Weekly 07/26/2010
New Yorker (The) 09/06/2010 pg. 77
New York Times Book Review 09/05/2010 pg. 1
New York Times Book Review 09/12/2010 pg. 30
Essence 10/01/2010 pg. 102
Booklist 09/15/2010 pg. 8
Entertainment Weekly 09/10/2010 pg. 93
LJ Top 10 Book 11/01/2010 pg. 1
Entertainment Weekly 12/24/2010 pg. 117
NY Times Notable Bks of Year 12/05/2010 pg. 30
New York Times Book Review 12/12/2010 pg. 10
Booklist Editors Choice/Adult 01/01/2011 pg. 8
Choice 08/01/2011
Publishers Weekly Best Books 11/08/2010 pg. 22
Kirkus Best Books 12/15/2010 pg. 6
People Weekly 11/12/2012 pg. 57
Ebony 02/01/2013 pg. 73
BookPage 08/01/2010
Ebony 07/01/2015 pg. 23

About the Author
Isabel Wilkerson won the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing for her reporting as Chicago bureau chief of The New York Times. The award made her the first black woman in the history of American journalism to win a Pulitzer Prize and the first African American to win for individual reporting. She won the George Polk Award for her coverage of the Midwest and a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship for her research into the Great Migration. She has lectured on narrative writing at the Nieman Foundation at Harvard University and has served as Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University and as the James M. Cox Jr. Professor of Journalism at Emory University. She is currently Professor of Journalism and Director of Narrative Nonfiction at Boston University. During the Great Migration, her parents journeyed from Georgia and southern Virginia to Washington, D.C., where she was born and reared. This is her first book.