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Customer Review

46 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Father Knows Best, June 4, 2008
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This review is from: The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood (Hardcover)
Ta-Nehisi Coates introduces readers to a new and intriguing coming-of-age story, The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons and An Unlikely Road to Manhood that takes place in Baltimore during the height of the Hip-Hop and Drug era. Paul Coates was a Vietnam Veteran who returned to the chaotic streets of Baltimore and became a leader in the city's Black Panther Party. Armed with determination, Paul Coates was a disciplinarian that strived for success and knowledge. Ta-Nehisi discusses his father's emphasis on knowledge and understanding your history in order to succeed. Ta-Nehisi admits to struggling in school as he attempted to find his way; yet he maintained the teachings of his father. He also discusses the path chosen by an older brother that teetered on self-destruction and then recovery.

Paul Coates' story is very refreshing. It is not the story of a former Black Panther but of a father's determination to raise his sons. Armed with knowledge, consciousness, common sense and self-worth, Ta-Nehisi Coates tells of his failures and triumphs into man-hood that were guided by his father and aided by his mother and teachers. Though his father was strict, you could feel the love in all of his actions. Ta-Nehisi Coates' writing style is simplistic and engaging. Each page encourages you to continue to the next. Everyone that reads it will appreciate this story but it is especially recommended for young men and those raising young men.

Reviewed by: Priscilla C. Johnson
APOOO BookClub
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 28, 2012 2:16:08 AM PDT
PetersonNY says:
You mean simple not simplistic.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 23, 2014 10:42:51 PM PDT
BALFOUR says:
Simple is simple; simplistic is simplistic. I believe she said what she meant and meant what she said. Communication is not just about expectation; it's also contribution.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 28, 2015 9:35:22 AM PDT
Truck Lover says:
He's right, she means simple. Simplistic is not a compliment in prose; it implies a flat, unnuanced quality. Simple, on the other hand, implies straightforward, even elegant. You wouldn't say he was "simplistic and engaging", and give a book 5 stars. Not to quibble for its own sake, but it's a bummer when book reviewers use language sloppily.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 28, 2015 7:03:30 PM PDT
Thanks for your expertise on proper language
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