Customer Review

3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book, but slightly disproportionate in parts., 14 Jan. 2005
This review is from: Long Walk To Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela (Paperback)
I would have appreciated something more like Chris Patten's East and West, rather than a chronological biography of Nelson Mandela's life.
Although seemingly dauntingly long, this book only took me about a week to read.
But perhaps this was due precisely to the emphasis on chronological narrative, which nevertheless was extremely revealing, particularly in terms of Mandela's extremely harsh treatment at the hands of the Afrikaans.
As I was nearing the end of the book, though, I couldn't help feeling that 4/5 of the work had gone on Mandela's time in prison, with only 25 or so 3-page long chapters, on average, looking at his actual release and the implications this has for South African history.
This is why I feel a more discursive work would have been appropriate, peppered with comments about his treatment at the hands of the police, although inherently one does get a sense of Mandela's character development by dint of this narrative style.
Overall it's difficult to sum up this book and the end appears a little incongruous, as it turns precisely from a biographical work into a wider political statement.
Nevertheless, this book is well worth reading as it provides valuable insights into many things, and is certaintly proves satisfying lection.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 8 Aug 2008 08:12:55 BDT
Elizabeth D. says:
As this is an AUTOBIOGRAPHY, did you consider the effect which an imprisonment that lasted most of his 'working' adult life would have had on him? Anyway, what makes you think that he wrote this book for anyone's reading pleasure? It is not a history book, it is a book of historic importance and a must-read for anyone interested in people.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Oct 2013 08:14:24 BDT
Last edited by the author on 17 Apr 2014 21:51:51 BDT
John Rose says:
You are a fool you know nothing about this murderous saint whose bombings ,shootings and burning people alive leaves one with a burning loathing of this vile disgusting creature named Nelson Mandela
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