If Beale Street Could Talk
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If Beale Street Could Talk

4.24 (6,468 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The inspiration for the upcoming feature film from Oscar award-winning director Barry Jenkins

'Achingly beautiful' Guardian

Harlem, the black soul of New York City, in the era of Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles. The narrator of Baldwin's novel is Tish nineteen, and pregnant. Her lover Fonny, father of her child, is in jail accused of rape. Flashbacks from their love affair are woven into the compelling struggle of two families to win justice for Fonny. To this love story James Baldwin brings a spare and impassioned intensity, charging it with universal resonance and power.

'If Beale Street Could Talk affirms not only love between a man and a woman, but love of a type that is dealt with only rarely in contemporary fiction - that between members of a family' Joyce Carol Oates
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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 14mm | 179g
  • PENGUIN CLASSICS
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0140187979
  • 9780140187977
  • 21,168

Review quote

One of the few essential novelists of our time * New Statesman * The spirit of Jimmy's work is of a high moral prophetic vision -- Amriri Baraka Truth-telling, witness bearing, soul stirring writing -- Cornel West Soulful . . . Racial injustice may flatten "the black experience" into one single, fearful, constantly undermined way of life-but black life, black love, is so much larger than that . . . It's one of the signature lessons of Baldwin's work that blackness contains multitudes * Vanity Fair * If Beale Street Could Talk affirms not only love between a man and a woman, but love of a type that is dealt with only rarely in contemporary fiction - that between members of a family -- Joyce Carol Oates
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About James Baldwin

Born in Harlem in 1924, James Baldwin was a novelist, essayist, play-wright, poet, social critic, and the author of more than twenty books. His first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, appeared in 1953 to excellent reviews, and his essay col-lection The Fire Next Time was a bestseller that made him an influential figure in the civil rights movement. Baldwin spent many years in France, where he moved to escape the racism and homophobia of the United States. He died in 1987.
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Rating details

6,468 ratings
4.24 out of 5 stars
5 45% (2,905)
4 38% (2,470)
3 14% (909)
2 2% (153)
1 0% (31)
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