Brown Girl Dreaming Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
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Jacqueline Woodson, one of today's finest writers, tells the moving story of her childhood in mesmerizing verse.
Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child's soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson's eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become.
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|Listening Length||3 hours and 55 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||August 28, 2014|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #6,541 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#1 in Women Biographies for Children
#1 in Poetry for Children
#1 in Literary Biographies for Children
Reviews with images
Top reviews from the United States
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Growing up in the south in an era where so much change was taking place, where children were surrounded from the outside with the message to be proud, and where the message from the older generation was still to avoid eye contact, you might expect more anger, more focus on the ugly side of that time. It’s not glossed over, it’s that the focus for those years shared in “Brown Girl Dreaming” is love for the place, the people and her memories. The nostalgia is sweet without sacrificing any truth, her power in the restraint she shows.
“The first time I write my full name Jacqueline Amanda Woodson without anybody’s help on a clean white page in composition notebook, I know if I wanted to I could write anything. Letters becoming words, words gathering meaning, becoming thoughts outside my head becoming sentences written by Jacqueline Amanda Woodson.”
This is the story of one girl finding her voice.
This is also the story of a part of America’s racial history.
This is Woodson’s story, but it’s also a story that is part of all of us.
“The people who came before me worked so hard to make this world a better place for me. I know my work is to make the world a better place for those coming after. As long as I can remember this, I can continue to do the work I was put here to do.”
I recalled the History of New York from what I had learned in my elementary school: the Dutch, Peter Stuyvesant and the slaves. In brown girl dreaming, I came away loving the trips so many of us have made from the North to the South and back again. I will think more about the role religion plays in our lives. I found it easy to put away the negative words I have heard about a place called Kingdom Hall and congregations called Jehovah Witnesses. Most of all I will continue to ponder the importance of a girl coming of age in the United States. Last but not least, there is the light seen by a teacher in a student. I am thinking of the teacher who told Jacqueline Woodson she should become a writer.
Throughout the novel, the poetry is indeed "mesmerizing--and inspiring."vogue.com/13470421/jacqueline-woodson-another-brooklyn-novel-interview/
This is perhaps aimed at a YA audience as most of her books are but I didn't view it that way. I think anyone of any age can appreciate this story of her family, the places she lived, the times in which she grew up, how her writing life developed and how she followed her dream . I can't say enough about the beautiful writing. She has provided us a tremendous sense of time and place growing up in the 1960's and 1970's in Greenville, SC and Brooklyn, NY. and the inner thoughts of a young girl who dreams of becoming a writer.
Just before this I read a copy of Woodson's new book [book:Another Brooklyn|27213163], to be published on 8/9/16 and I'll say the same thing here as I did in my review of it , she was born to write and I am grateful for profound experience it was for me to see her journey.
Top reviews from other countries
Woodson is a black American, and tells her story as a `brown girl' born in 1963, both as her own, individual family story and the wider story of black history from a particular time and place. She is an award winning writer for children and teens, but her reach goes way beyond being confined to appeal `only to children'
In many ways, I think the challenge involved in recognising that children are completely capable of understanding great and subtle complexity of meaning, but that they may not have quite the sophistication of adult vocabulary, is a brilliant discipline for a writer - it hones their craft. Some writing about complexity for adults leads to writing becoming over fussy, even designed to confuse or show off dexterity, but the really excellent writer who chooses to write for a younger audience - like Woodson - somehow keeps all the layers of meaning held within simply arresting, clear images, clear language
I had to take this clear and pared down book extremely slowly and very carefully, anxious not to miss anything.
Woodson's words are spoken softly, but they are powerful, and her images rolled unstoppably over me, leaving me, many times, breathlessly weeping
The starting point, is a poem by Langston Hughes, the rest of the story is Woodson's
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow
Born in Ohio, but raised also in South Carolina, where her mother and her father's mother were from, she tells of an experience from the North and the South.
She reminds us that in 1963:
In Birmingham, Alabama, Martin Luther King Jr.
is planning a march on Washington, where
John F. Kennedy is president.
In Harlem, Malcolm X is standing on a soapbox
talking about a revolution
In Montgomery, only seven years have passed
since Rosa Parks refused
to give up
her seat on a city bus
She recounts the confusing experience of marital break-up, from the child's viewpoint, and the pain when families are torn apart, the conflicts when the people you love are no longer all living together - a sense that `home' is forever lost because it now belongs in several different places
Our feet are beginning to belong
in two different worlds-Greenville
and New York. We don't know how to come
To set against the pain of loss and breakup as relationships end and the older generation who were strong and powerful become frail and the ones to be looked after, is Jacqueline's secret excitement at beginning to master words, to discover that she is, she will be, a teller or stories
For days and days, I could only sniff the pages
hold the notebook close
listen to the sound the papers made.
Nothing in the world is like this-
a bright white page with
pale blue lines. The smell of a newly sharpened pencil
the soft hush of it
This would indeed be a wonderful book for a child, and probably an even more wonderful one for parents and children to find delight in together.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 25, 2019