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A Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela [Mass Market Paperback]

Nelson Mandela
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (344 customer reviews)

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Audio, CD, Abridged, Audiobook, CD £17.99  
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Audio Download, Abridged £10.40 or Free with Audible.co.uk 30-day free trial

Book Description

Jun 2014
Since his release from prison in 1990, Nelson Mandela has emerged as the world's most potent moral leader since Gandhi. As president of the ANC and head of the anti-apartheid movement, he has been instrumental in moving South Africa toward black-majority rule. Throughout the world he is revered as a vital force in the fight for human rights and racial equality. In this autobiography Nelson Mandela details the development of his political consciousess and describes his pivotal role in the formation of the ANC Youth League. He brings to life his dramatic years underground, which lead to a sentence of life imprisonment in 1964, and sheds new light on his surprisingly eventful quarter century behind bars. And he takes us inside the momentous events of the 1990s, leading up to South Africa's first-ever multi-racial elections, and his feelings about his near landslide victory as president.
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (Jun 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316034789
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316034784
  • Product Dimensions: 17.2 x 10.6 x 3.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (344 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 718,245 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

The famously taciturn South African president reveals much of himself in Long Walk to Freedom. A good deal of this autobiography was written secretly while Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years on Robben Island by South Africa's apartheid regime. Among the book's interesting revelations is Mandela's ambivalence toward his lifetime of devotion to public works. It cost him two marriages and kept him distant from a family life he might otherwise have cherished. Long Walk to Freedom also discloses a strong and generous spirit that refused to be broken under the most trying circumstances--a spirit in which just about everybody can find something to admire. --Amazon.com --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


A tale of anger and sorrow, love and joy, grace and elegance (DAILY NEWS)

Indispensable ... [a] unique life-story (Anthony Sampson)

A truly stunning account of his extraordinary life ... A vivid testimony to an unusual mixture of courage, persistence, tolerance, and forgiveness (Sir David Steel)

One of the most life- affirming books you'll read (GQ) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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First Sentence
APART FROM LIFE, a strong constitution, and an abiding connection to the Thembu royal house, the only thing my father bestowed upon me at birth was a name, Rolihlahla. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
65 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An essential read 3 Jun 2007
This book has over 800 pages and even its own index, but don't let that scare you off. It is far from being a boring historical report on the events surrounding his life. If you want to know what he did, go to an encyclopedia and read such a historical report. If you want to know Nelson Mandela, to know his way of thinking, to feel every emotion as he feels it, to really get a picture of the pain he and the oppressed felt, read this book.

As the book progresses, the development of Mandela's character and his way of thinking is made apparent to the reader. Every emotion that Mandela feels is shared with the reader in a deeper way than in most autobiographies, as alongside his personal struggles, there is the struggle for freedom that can incite strong feelings of injustice and sympathy in anyone. This is definately an emotionally and politically heavy book, but there are several moments of light-heartedness where Mandela expresses certain past events with an irony or humour. As he looks back on certain bad experiences, he can laugh about it.

This is a man that everyone should learn about, and this is certainly the book to read in order to do so.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Inspiring Figure 5 Mar 2008
By Scully Bloke VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent audio CD. Read by Danny Glover its tells the story of Nelson Mandella in Nelson's own words.

Starting from the very humble beginnings its tells of Nelsons journey from his tribal start through his joining the ANC, his reasoning into why he started a small army set upon sabotage, his arrest, trial and release.

What comes to front of your mind is Nelsons unbelievable belief in what he is doing. He has a vision in mind for how he wants South Africa to be and nothing can shake this. All of his actions are taken in alignment with this belief. As he has, he is willing to give his life for his people and he is willing also to die for his people.

The story has many fascinating inside some personal such as his family life and marriages, and some quite deep insight into how a man becomes a leader.

The only downside to this audio CD for me , was the sometimes monotonous and uninspiring voice of Danny Glover (Lethal Weapon) a strange choice for such an inspiring speaker, and the difficulties I particular had with the pronunciation of South African names and places.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic/compelling! 18 July 2005
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What a read! I like many people of my age (50's) had heard about N.M. thoughout my life. Whilst he was a man I greatly admired, I knew little about his early life and felt I wanted to know why such a good man felt the need to turn to violence. A useful insight in todays world. I started the book wanting to know more about him but was a little daunted by the books length and feared it would be 'heavy going'. How wrong I was, I can honestly say it is one of the best books I have ever read. Factually compelling and at the same time so easy to read. I still have 80 pages to go and I am reading them very slowly just because I don't want this book to end. Buy it....it is the story of a really remarkable man.
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79 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating read 25 Oct 2001
This is a long book, but extremely worthwhile in its insights into South Africa as well as to Nelson Mandela himself. I got a real feeling from this book of what it feels like to live in a society where the state is constantly tightening the screws on your rights and freedoms. The contrast between the way that Mandela is treated outside the country (as a scholar and statesman) and at home (as a dangerous terrorist and member of a racial underclass) comes over most strongly.
Mandela's tales of prison life (of 27 years) also give an insight into the way that the political mind works. Where many would have succumbed to desperation and terminal introspection, Mandela is still compelled to debate, to organise, to protest and to educate. Finally, Robben Island was widely considered an "ANC University", and the authorities were still afraid of Mandela and his colleagues even after they had been in prison for two decades.
A fascinating personal history of one the key conflicts of the 20th century, and a must for students of democracy.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mandatory reading for all 6 Dec 2013
I recall vividly the Christmas eve, sitting under the shade of farmhouse
trees near Sea View, in the Eastern Cape of South Africa when I read this
tomb of a book a few years ago. Instead of later going inside to prepare a
festive meal, I continued reading, riveted to the very end.

Having grown up in South Africa, many of the events, names and faces mentioned
in the book were a summary of the history of my own surroundings. The book not
only shocked and interested me, but left me with an overwhelming debt of gratitude
for the bravery and risks Nelson Mandela took (and many others around him) for the
benefit of others. He taught not only his nation, but the world to be forgiving and
fearless. To use our hearts and minds to ensure society is just, free and fair.

How Nelson Mandela managed to keep his own organisation functioning purposefully in a
sensible direction, when so many where oppressed, harmed and disadvantaged is a
leadership conundrum I will struggle to resolve. His charisma and dedication to the cause
will have him immortalised and his fans loyal for generations.

The book takes the reader from his humble, yet important roots from a rural childhood,
to his early days in Johannesburg and then on to become a Freedom Fighter. On the run
as the Black Pimpernel, the Rivonia Trials, the Dark Years on Robben Island and then
Talking with the enemy were the most interesting sections of the book for me.

Reading the book in one lengthy sitting exhausted me emotionally. The enormity of
Madiba's gift to all of us is huge. Man's inhumanity to man, where wonderful people
were discriminated against is hard to fathom.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Long but worthwhile about an extraordinary human!
Excellent telling of a tough but enlightening life dedicated at much personal cost to himself to the removal of Afrikaans oppression.

Thoroughly intriguing read.
Published 2 days ago by Osprey
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommend this for social history
Very powerful read.
Published 2 days ago by Jeannette
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good read
Thought provoking autobiography - Nelson really makes you think about the state of humanity and prejudices. Awesome how he never gave up on his people. A good read
Published 3 days ago by Troodles34
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Very good, interesting account of a giant.
Published 6 days ago by Jack Macyntire
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 7 days ago by Ernest Pennington
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended
Wonderful story and well worth a read. I bought this when Nelson Mandela was still alive but hadn't had a chance to read it. His passing made me want to learn more about his story. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Pat B
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book
Really enjoyed the read
Published 12 days ago by Seb
5.0 out of 5 stars truly amazing read
A truly amazing book enlightening enthralling a must. It looks a long book but it is a journey you walk with a remarkable man
Published 12 days ago by norman mac donald
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 17 days ago by A. Hamill
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
great read and inspiring
Published 18 days ago by Paul Devenish
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