Tina Jordan
September 01, 2010 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Warmth of Other Suns

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Isabel Wilkerson
publisher
Random House
genre
History

We gave it an A

”[Black Southerners] did not cross the turnstiles of customs at Ellis Island. They were already citizens. But where they came from, they were not treated as such,” writes Isabel Wilkerson in The Warmth of Other Suns, her sprawling and stunning account of the Great Migration, the 55-year stretch (1915?70) during which 6 million black Americans fled the Jim Crow South. Wilkerson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, uses the journeys of three of them — a Mississippi sharecropper, a Louisiana doctor, and a Florida laborer — to etch an indelible and compulsively readable portrait of race, class, and politics in 20th-century America. History is rarely distilled so finely. A

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