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All over but the Shoutin' Paperback – September 8, 1998
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One reason Rick Bragg won a Pulitzer Prize for his feature articles at the New York Times is that he never forgets his roots. When he writes about death and violence in urban slums, Bragg draws on firsthand knowledge of how poverty deforms lives and on his personal belief in the dignity of poor people. His memoir of a hardscrabble Southern youth pays moving tribute to his indomitable mother and struggles to forgive his drunken father. All Over but the Shoutin' is beautifully achieved on both these counts--and many more. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From School Library Journal
YA?On Palm Sunday, 1994, a tornado ripped through a church in Piedmont, AL, killing 20 people. This is Bragg's hometown, and he began his story on the tragedy for the New York Times as follows: "This is a place where grandmothers hold babies on their laps under the stars and whisper in their ears that the lights in the sky are holes in the floor of heaven. This is a place where the song 'Jesus Loves Me' has rocked generations to sleep, and heaven is not a concept, but a destination." It is writing of this quality that won the author his job as a national correspondent and the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for feature writing. He grew up in poverty, the second of three sons of an alcoholic, abusive father and a loving mother. The early chapters give a beautiful description of warm and happy moments he enjoyed with her and his family even as she struggled to provide for them after they'd been abandoned. Teens will enjoy reading about the resourceful, talented, and lucky young man's career as he moved from local reporter to working for regional and national papers. A book for students with an interest in writing, journalism, or the South and of use for autobiography assignments.?Patricia Noonan, Prince William Public Library, VA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
Loved the way he wrote of his brothers, Sam, the one that always protected him and was the strong, blue collar worker. Mark the one his Mother called "baby boy" was an alcoholic who was a lost soul, seeking a place in the world for himself where he could feel secure.
Good book, excellent for a book club read. Rick describes himself from a youngster to a successful New York Times writer. It's a great read about the rise of a poor boy and his family, the love and the rejection he felt growing up. Great read!
Rick's way with words is hard to describe. Beautiful is to mundane. He knows how to grab your heart and squeeze until you are lost in the story.
Thanks Rick for sharing your story, and being real. I hope you know now you are not a poser, but the real deal. You worked hard to get where you are now. I love your mother was with you for one of the momentous moments of your career. I love your loyalty to her and your brothers.
Born 'white trash' into a close-knit, hard-drinking and hard-fighting family, Rick Bragg talks about how his alcoholic father deserts him and his two brothers and they are raised by his mother who sacrifices everything to provide for her sons.
This book is an homage to Bragg's mother and a self-reflection of how a scantily educated southerner with a god-given gift for writing can make it to the New York Times and win a Pulitzer!
Bragg has an attitude and a chip on his shoulder which he candidly acknowledges throughout this book. Perhaps because of his childhood he is drawn to tragedies and has covered news such as Haitian politics, the Oklahoma bombing and the Susan Smith drowings of her own children.
This book reads like a poem, a clear glimmer of light into Mr. Bragg's world. Certainly he has the story-teller's gift but he also has emotional intensity. He also has the wisdom to not take himself too seriously all the time. This is a book that I will read again.....and maybe a third time as well.
This is a masterpiece; a great piece of uniquely American literature.
Told in memoir style, what Rick Bragg does here is TELL STORIES. And what a way with a sentence this man has!
Written as an homage to his mother, he recounts his climb from the back woods to the pinnacle of success for a writer- Pulitzer-prize winning New York Times journalist.
Rick Bragg is one of the few writers that can move me to tears not only by the sad truth of a story but by the beauty of a sentence.