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Twelve Years a Slave

Twelve Years a Slave [Kindle Edition]

Solomon Northup
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (313 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"For sheer drama, few accounts of slavery match Solomon Northup's tale of abduction from freedom and forcible enslavement." --Ira Berlin, from the Introduction "When I read ["Twelve Years a Slave"] for the first time, it was like the first time I read Anne Frank's diary. And I wondered to myself, 'Why isn't this book on everyone's bookshelf.' . . . For me, it's a classic. It should be in every school." --Steve McQueen, director of the film adaptation of "Twelve Years a Slave, "in "Entertainment Weekly" "Frightening, gripping and inspiring . . . Northup's story seems almost biblical, structured as it is as a descent and resurrection narrative of a protagonist who, like Christ, was 33 at the time of his abduction. . . . Northup reminds us of the fragile nature of freedom in any human society and the harsh reality that whatever legal boundaries existed between so-called free states and slave states in 1841, no black man, woman or child was permanently safe." "--Henry Louis Gates, Jr., "The Root"" "A moving, vital testament to one of slavery's 'many thousands gone' who retained his humanity in the bowels of degradation. It is also a chilling insight into the 'peculiar institution.'" --"Saturday Review"

Product Description

Here is the harrowing true story of Solomon Northup, a free black man living in New York. He was kidnaped by unscrupulous slave hunters and sold into slavery where he endured unimaginable degradation and abuse until his rescue twelve years later. A powerful and riveting condemnation of American slavery.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 461 KB
  • Print Length: 125 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1481979108
  • Publisher: Start Publishing LLC (11 Mar 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (313 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,921 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential to understand the present 22 Jan 2014
The main interest of the book is of course the "autobiographical testimony" it contains. But this particular edition is enriched with notes and various appendices written by the two editors. These notes and appendices create a real perspective providing all available documents or press clippings about most elements the book contains and we cannot be aware of today. The people who are named are then expanded with concrete information and data about who they were and what they did. The events that are mentioned are thoroughly documented from the press of the time and from all available registers and alternative testimonies. The notes and appendices turn the "biographical testimony" into a document that can be considered as mostly truthful beyond the personal vision the author provides us with, for example the fact that he only sees one side of Louisiana as we will mention later, the American takeover and their practice of slavery as chattel exploitation. Solomon Northup could of course not know better and is well forced to ignore the French or Spanish conceptions.

As such this book is a phenomenal tool for people who really want to know what slavery was some 20 to 10 years before the Civil War in the American tradition. It provides us with a detailed description of the treatment, exploitation and management of slaves in the South, even if it only concerns the American side of Louisiana forty years after the Louisiana Purchase from Napoleon and France. What's more it provides us with a panorama of what the Northern states and their citizens could know about the practice of this peculiar institution in the Southern States since this book was published in 1853 and was quite successful at the time.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars humbling 19 Oct 2013
By Lorenzo
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you haven't read this, you should. It's as simple as that. A moving first hand testimony of inhumanity. Only 60% of this edition is the original work, the rest is a mix of newspaper and court records with commentary by Dr Eakin which attempts to present an epilogue to the first hand account of Solomon. The emotion is in his harrowing tale of abuse.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Heartbreaking 29 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I knew that this book would be hard to read. It is written in Solomon's own words and firstly describes the good life he had with his wife and family as a free man. Without spoiling this for other readers by going into detail, he is betrayed and ends up in the hands of slave traders. He has different 'owners' some better than others. The description of the conditions endured by these human beings at the hands of others if heart rending and emotionally draining to read....The description of how Christmas was spent by the slaves was very they toiled all year and still managed to celebrate.

I cannot say I enjoyed this book, due to the content, but it demonstrates what the human spirit can endure and it also deserves to be read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hauntingly embarrassing 12 Jan 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Read this book before you watch the movie... Amazingly readable considering it was written so long ago. Left me yet again questioning, how could humans treat other humans in such a deplorable, degrading and sickening way?We should all read this.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A deep and moving account 1 Dec 2013
Solomon Northup's Twelve Years a Slave is a well-written and a deep and moving story not only of man's depravity in his treatment of others, but also of the inner strength we all have and means we can harness to get out of different predicaments without dehumanizing ourselves in the process. Like the story of Josef in Disciples of Fortune, Solomon Northrup's book gives an amazing of Solomon's trials and tribulations.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An authentic account of slavery 2 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
All credit to the author. This book was a moving, authentic account of his life as a free man taken into slavery. It portrays his life from his perspective and reflectively. I was thankful to be spared from a lot of gore and negativity as it is such an emotive topic. It made me cry.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Man's inhumanity to man. 30 Jan 2014
By carol
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Thought it an excellent if harrowing story all the more so it being true.The author also showed surprising empathy toward the white mans thinking.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Twelve years of hell 25 Nov 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
For a book written in the 1850's by a man who did not get the sort of education one does today, this book was an excellent read with a personal insight of a free man kidnapped and sold into slavery. The descriptions of his experiences and of those he lived with for all those years was harrowing and moving.

I understand this book is going to be made into a film. I hope it reflects the hell that human beings sold into slavery experienced and makes people think especially as the spectre of slavery has come to the fore again all over the world.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent account of the slave trade
I enjoyed the book, but felt it laboured to long on the same theme and became slightly bored in the middle of the book, however it gave an excellent account of the inhumane way man... Read more
Published 14 hours ago by By Robert Davies
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
pity we are so bad with people, very moving story
Published 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Good book, it's difficult when you see the film first.
Published 19 days ago by Ursula Hyland
5.0 out of 5 stars extremely well written
Brilliant writing of a story with heart wrenching details. It is a sad stain on human character their treatment of fellow man.
Published 20 days ago by Allan Rankin
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
not good
Published 21 days ago by Hugh Campbell
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
very useful shelving system, plenty of shelving space
Published 23 days ago by Mrd C Place
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic read!
What a truly amazing story. I stayed up late to finish reading this book and then went to see the film. I found myself shouting out loud at times as if Solomon could hear me! Read more
Published 23 days ago by A Joseph
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
very good book
Published 24 days ago by Janet Allman
4.0 out of 5 stars Brill book
Excellent book, it seems to be more detailed than the film in the cinema. It sure gets your imagination going.
Published 27 days ago by cece
3.0 out of 5 stars but the book ROOTS though similiar is a MUCH BETTER read.
An interesting read, but the book ROOTS though similiar is a MUCH BETTER read.
Published 1 month ago by Michele
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