Twelve Years a Slave
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Twelve Years a Slave

By (author) Solomon Northup , Introduction by Dr. Dolen Perkins-valdez

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Solomon Northup was an entrepreneur and dedicated family man, father to three young children, Elizabeth, Margaret, and Alonzo. What little free time he had after long days of manual and farm labor, he spent reading books and playing the violin. Though his father was born into slavery, Solomon was born and lived free. In March 1841, two strangers approached Northup, offering him employment as a violinist in a town hundreds of miles away from his home in Saratoga Springs, New York. Solomon bid his wife farewell until his return. Only after he was drugged and bound, did he realize the strangers were kidnappers-that nefarious brand of criminals in the business of capturing runaway and free blacks for profit. Thus began Northup's life as a slave. Dehumanized, beaten, and worked mercilessly, Northup suffered all the more wondering what had become of his family. One owner was savagely cruel and Northup recalls he was "indebted to him for nothing, save undeserved abuse." Just as he felt the summer of his life fade and all hope nearly lost, he met a kind-hearted stranger who changed the course of his life. A book no one interested in American history can afford to miss.

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  • Hardback | 300 pages
  • 142 x 214 x 30mm | 399.99g
  • 05 Dec 2013
  • SIMON & SCHUSTER
  • New York
  • English
  • 37th
  • 1476767343
  • 9781476767345
  • 59,491

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Author Information

Solomon Northup (1808-c.1864-75) was a free-born African American from Saratoga Springs, New York, who was kidnapped into slavery in 1841. After his escape, he became an abolitionist and published his memoir, Twelve Years a Slave (1853). He gave many lectures in support of the abolitionist causes and aided in the Underground Railroad for fugitive slaves. Dolen Perkins-Valdez, PhD, is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel Wench. In 2011, she was a finalist for two NAACP Image Awards and the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for fiction. She was also awarded the First Novelist Award by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.

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Customer reviews

Twelve Years a Slave

Twelve Years a Slave is the narrative of Solomon Northup, a free man kidnapped and sold into slavery. The book is a documentary account of slavery in that particular place at that particular time. The non-emotional descriptions present the events and leave the reader to feel the emotion in the book and the horror of the treatment the slaves received. This detachment makes the book less dramatic perhaps, but for me, adds to the power of the words and the events described. Read my complete review at: http://www.memoriesfrombooks.com/2014/04/twelve-years-slave.htmlshow more
by Nada A.