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12 years a slave: Illustrated
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Ok, so of course the heaviness of the book is nothing you would say is "good" to read about but it's very captivating. I saw the movie first and then became obsessed with finding out his whole story. I really wanted to know all that happened during his time being enslaved. The movie very closely mirrors the book with the exception of some details. Like, in the movie they don't tell you that the non-respected loser Tibeats was Solomon's master after William Ford. Which had to suck because he was very hateful and was always trying to provoke Solomon or flipping out for absolutely no reason at all. I got a better idea of the characters from reading the book. The way Solomon talked about Ford I could tell that he really had strong admiration for him and he definitely wasn't as bad a "master" as others that he would encounter. Michael Fassbender who played Edwin Epps did a great job in the movie but the book gives a very clear depiction(as a drunk, sadistic, crazy fool) of this Epps character and it's 10 times worse then the movie version of him. I would say if you want to know what really happened and what was going on in his head during his time down in Louisiana read this book. It will make you sad just like the movie because its a very sad topic but I liked that it was Solomon's words telling me his story so it was worth the read.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 7, 2014
Format: Hardcover
The writing style is superb, lyrical and robust. The way that Northrup uses one word to eliminate entire phrases we now use in language. For example Northrup owned land sufficient to obtain suffrage in NY State in the 1840s. Beautiful!

He talked of his collusion with the other slaves so as a driver when he "whipped them" he never touched them but they made sure to writhe and scream. He wanted to live to see his family and never was turned to the evil side.

The book parallels today's society. To quote Plato "The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." If we do nothing, evil will prevail.

I highly recommend reading this amazing real life story.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This is an inspiration story that takes you through one of the darkest periods in US history. Northup was held as a slave for 12 years in the two decades leading to the Civil War. His candid account about what happened to him while in captivity, is a testament to human perseverance. At the end of each chapter, I was eager to continue reading, to find out what became of Northup. At one point, he is left under a tree, with a noose around his neck for hours. At another point he is chased into the woods by hunting dogs, that have been known to kill runaway slaves. I felt myself routing for Northup at every turn, and looking forward to the point in the story where he is delivered from slavery.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on December 7, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
For many, the picture of the South and slavery springs from "Gone with the Wind" or the Chevy Chase scene on the porch of his character's plantation. The contrast between those images and the reflections of Solomon Northup is harsh. Not for the squeamish, this book will put hair on your chest and dirt under your fingernails. When I finished this book, I said to myself, "Got it." This story documents slavery through the Civil War, explains the resistance to equal rights (civil rights), and documents the plights of the descendants of the black and white people of the South.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 25, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
The content of the book is wonderful, but the book itself is full of errors. Some pages have repeated passages, missing punctuation, etc.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on February 6, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
This book is so interesting and informative. I found that I knew not nearly as much of that era of (slavery and emancipation) as I had assumed that I did. My husband had purchased the Kindle version of 12 Years a Slave but the one that I purchased had several other stories as well. Twelve Years A Slave is about Solomon Northrup, who was born as a free person, but was duped into going on tour with two charlatans and sold into slavery. (Don't want to spoil the story so will stop here.) Other stories included were: Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe; Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, by Frederick Douglas; Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, byHarriet Jacobs and also true; and Up From Slavery: An Autobiography by Booker T. Washington which was actually my favorite book. He was born into slavery and was a child when slavery ended. Booker T. Washington was a brilliant humanitarian who lived through a terrible time in the History of the United States of America and he definitely left a lasting legacy through his many kind deeds and the school system that he founded in Tuskeegee, Alabama.
This book was about the same cost as the single book "12 Years a Slave". This is a great read and if you buy the Kindle version look for the cover that has the lock an chain on the front page. It is the version this the extra books. Enjoy, learn and weep!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on November 4, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I love this book it was very sad, I wanted to read the book before I saw the movie. Every one should read it! This should be a must for schools.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 22, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
The memoir provides vivid detail of a horrific chapter in American history. A much richer story than the recent movie presented.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 31, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
For those interested in history, this is an excellent book. I highly recommend for those wishing to learn more of American negro life. I learned much. A must read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 18, 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
Eye opening! You don't want to believe its true, but it most certainly is. Most of America doesn't realize how many free blacks were kidnapped and sold into slavery. This book chronicles how savagely people, my people, were treated.
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