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Alex Haley: And the Books That Changed a Nation by [Norrell, Robert J.]
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Alex Haley: And the Books That Changed a Nation Kindle Edition

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Length: 274 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews


**A New York Times Sunday Book Review Editors' Choice**

"A first-rate portrait of [Alex Haley] and infinitely readable." ―Patrik Bass, Essence

"Briskly paced...The Autobiography of Malcolm X and Roots helped to fundamentally transform American race relations and understanding of black history for successive generations." ―The New York Times Book Review

"If you’re up for a well-told, warts-and-all bio, this one will have you rooted to your seat" ―Times Record

"Sympathetic and mostly clear-eyed...[Haley] produced two of the most acclaimed and top-selling books of the second half of the 20th century." ―The Wall Street Journal

"With sensitivity and careful study, Norrell examines Haley's embattled life and extraordinary achievements. ... History and literary criticism enrich the first biography of Alex Haley, author of Roots and Malcolm X's Autobiography." ―Shelf Awareness

"This is the first biography of Haley (1921-1992), and as such it is long overdue...the pages seem to turn themselves." ―Dwight Garner, The New York Times

"Norrell makes a convincing case that Haley increased, for good, the variety and quality of stories that can be told about its African-American citizens." ―Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

"As Norrell notes, Haley would play a major role in shaping the way blacks and whites viewed race during the tumultuous years of the civil rights movement and beyond...the arc of Haley’s career is absorbing, from his discovery that he could make a living as a writer while serving in the Coast Guard to his hardscrabble existence trying to sell freelance pieces." --Booklist

“As this fascinating biography reveals, Alex Haley was an unlikely griot of the African American experience. A lackadaisical student and a hustling journalist whose closest connections were with some of the stodgiest publishing houses and magazines of the day, Haley hardly seemed a likely candidate to create with Malcolm X one of the signal autobiographies of the twentieth century or to write Roots, a family history that literally captivated a generation. More than just a scrupulously fair portrait of this master raconteur, Norrell has produced a book that compels us to reflect on the combination of talents and artifice that enabled Haley to leave an indelible mark on modern American culture.” ―W. Fitzhugh Brundage, Chair, Department of History, UNC-Chapel Hill

“Norrell brings a broad background in African-American history to this well-researched portrait of a controversial writer,...Alex Haley... who changed Americans' perceptions of racial history.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“Robert J. Norrell's fascinating new look at the life of Alex Haley claims in its subtitle that Haley wrote books that "changed a nation." That lofty claim is backed up by Norrell's research and command of his subject. But what is most surprising is learning just how those books changed the affable, ambitious, and strikingly enigmatic Haley. Norrell's "Haley" gives us the man behind the Malcolm X of The Autobiography, and the one behind Roots' Kunta Kinte. It is a powerful look at America as Haley saw it - and at times - how he dreamed it.” ―Saladin Ambar, author of MALCOLM X AT OXFORD UNION: Racial Politics in a Global Era

“Robert J. Norrell's Alex Haley is an essential read for anyone interested in race and culture in twentieth-century America.” ―Clarence E. Walker, Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus, University of California, Davis

“Highly readable...Norrell's even-handed treatment of Haley, including a dissection of the accusations of plagiarism and fictionalization that dogged the author, reveals a multidimensional and sympathetic human being. .. Anyone with fond memories of reading Roots (or watching the ABC miniseries based on it) should enjoy learning about Haley.” ―Publisher's Weekly

About the Author

ROBERT J. NORRELL is the author of several books including his first novel, Eden Rise; his 2009 biography, Up from History: The Life of Booker T. Washington; The House I Live In: Race in the American Century; and Reaping the Whirlwind: The Civil Rights Movement in Tuskegee won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award in 1986. A professor at the University of Tennessee, he lives in Asheville, NC.

Product details

  • File Size: 3984 KB
  • Print Length: 274 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1137279605
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (November 10, 2015)
  • Publication Date: November 10, 2015
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00WDW06HA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #851,329 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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