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Letter to My Daughter

4.06  ·  Rating Details  ·  9,171 Ratings  ·  1,090 Reviews
For a world of devoted fans, a much-awaited new volume of absorbing stories and inspirational wisdom from one of our best-loved writers.

Dedicated to the daughter she never had but sees all around her, Letter to My Daughter reveals Maya Angelou's path to living well and living a life with meaning. Told in her own inimitable style, this book transcends genres and categories:
Audio CD, 2 pages
Published September 23rd 2008 by Random House Audio (first published 2008)
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Oct 27, 2008 Tamara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading Maya Angelou is like getting a big hug on a bad day. She has the most comforting voice, and may be the wisest person I can think of. I want to be like her when I grow up.

Favorite Quotes:

Make every effort to change things you do not like. If you cannot make a change, change the way you have been thinking.

I remind myself it is sufficient to know what I know, and that what I know, may not always be true.

[I] try to be present and accountable for all I do and leave undone.
"I gave birth to one child, a son, but I have thousands of daughters. You are Black and White, Jewish and Muslim, Asian, Spanish-speaking, Native American and Aleut. You are fat and thin and pretty and plain, gay and straight, educated and unlettered, and I am speaking to you all. Here is my offering to you."

This is a lovely series of Maya Angelou's essays dedicated to all women of the world. She shares some of her most touching life stories, divulges words of wisdom, and muses on those topics w
Diane S ☔
Apr 06, 2016 Diane S ☔ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wisdom imparted, garnered from a lifetime of pain and joy, essays written to the daughters of the world, she had none of her own. Simply beautiful.
Oct 10, 2008 EJ rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
Angelou's book, Letter to My Daughter caught my eye immediately as I was browsing the shelves at Barnes and Noble. I picked it up and settled in a comfy chair with my latte and my soon to be good friend Maya. I was ready for advice, wisdom, love and experiences from a woman who has lived many more lives than I could ever imagine. Not to mention one who puts it so eloquently.

It is a craving of 20somethings to be gently advised in life from those who have already gone through the same struggles. I
My rating of this is based on the content, voice, and my teary-eyed reading experience. Within a few hours, I was done reading this book and I felt as if Maya Angelou was sitting next to me, telling me her story, and giving me advice. She discloses a few things about her young adult (and adult) life, things relatable to most women. Admittedly, I did feel like her daughter when I read this (yes, I'm that sentimental).
Aug 15, 2010 Rachel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I guess I haven't really read Maya Angelou before so I may not have acquired the taste for her writing and the requisite knowledge of the form to understand this book. I often feel this way upon encountering poetry (adult contemporary poetry--I can handle Ogden Nash and Shel Silverstein and a variety of poems we had to memorize in high school English). Though this book is mostly prose, the stylization of the prose is not my favorite (or perhaps I should say it is not in my comfort zone). The boo ...more
Apr 28, 2016 Maria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I started this book a long, long time ago. Things became really hectic, and I wasn't able to finish it. Well yesterday was finally the right time to sit down and read it (somewhat again). I ended up starting over and I read 79 pages in one sitting. Today I read the remaining pages. I loved it. I love Maya Angelou. Her style is one of my absolute favorites.

This book isn't like the storytelling in her autobiographies that are loved by so many. Rather it's a collection of her experiences, poetry, c
Jun 04, 2015 Debbie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maya Angelou is of our most revered writers, she is one of the wisest women to ever lived.
This brief summary accounts details from her life and experiences, her candid and sometimes provocative nature, the wisdom that living those moments has brought her. She never had a daughter of her own and saw glimpses in women around her and wanted to pass on some of her insights to these 'daughters'

I would mark it as a 5 but was slightly undone by the religious references. I tend to balk at any mention o
Nov 24, 2008 Kate rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book, quick read. Maya Angelou is so witty, I never realized! She is also so inspirational and genuine.
Jan 09, 2009 Elizabeth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Go ahead and judge me, I listned to this as an itunes audio file. But! with good reason. This is Maya Angelous's life story - her different trials and triumphs that have made her the woman in our history that should be so reveered. I found it fitting to listen to her tell her own story. Although, so much of this quick read is profound that I will also be getting the hard copy so that I can study her words and teachings.

pay note to her discussion on faith and god.
her coverage of race
her own dark
Apr 29, 2016 Shannon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, maya-angelou
My dad sent me this book when it was first released. I'm starting to think I need to drop everything I'm reading and read all of the books he's sent me, which are not nearly as close to the top of my to-read pile as they apparently should be.

This book is a love letter. It's a book that says, these are the lessons that you do not have to learn for yourself. I get a little emotional when I think about it that way actually.

I finished it in couple of hours. When I was done, I had marked something
Feb 27, 2009 sleeps9hours rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Hardly a book. I loved Angelou’s autobiographies, but this strikes me as a publishing gimmick. 166 pages, of which a FULL 69 are BLANK!!!!! It’s a collection of 28 short pieces, and between each is a page with the only the number of the piece on the front, blank on the back. When a piece ends on an odd numbered page, the even numbered page behind it is blank. Didn’t learn anything I couldn’t have gotten out of her previous works. Very disappointed b/c I'd felt great anticipation.
Jan 14, 2015 MissSugarTown rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A kind of perfect book for me.
Sonja Arlow
I specifically wanted the audio book as she really had a very distinct voice and I wanted HER to tell her own story.

Only about 1/3 held life stories of universal wisdom while also showing a very humble (and funny) woman. I would have given this book a higher rating had there been more of these because I truly loved them. Some of my favourites were:

1) The Moroccan coffee experience
2) The rugs in a house in Senegal
3) The restaurant scene with the waitress and grits

I am not going to elaborate on th
Jan 21, 2015 Teresa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, non-fiction
I need to review books before moving on to the next one. I always do a better job when it is still fresh in my mind.

This slim volume has substance and unusual topics. What a remarkable life Maya Angelou lived and yet, how humble and thoughtful in her musings.

I was especially struck by several chapters. I loved that she echoed my feelings on vulgarity.

"We need to have the courage to say obesity is not funny and vulgarity is not amusing. Insolent children and submissive parents are not the chara
Feb 20, 2015 Nicole rated it liked it
Recommends it for: women
Shelves: non-fiction
Really great read with lots of life lessons and interesting stories. Part memoir, part advice it feels, as intended, as though you're listening to a mother or grandmother telling each story as it's read aloud by Maya Angelou herself. She shares personal stories - some are humorous, some are not. It is well-written, interesting, funny and sobering, but in the way a good letter is also often characterised by its brevity, it is perhaps too short to involve everything that she wishes to share while ...more
Maya Angelou is a universal mother. Through her words she takes you into her arms when you’re out of sorts, comforts you, and then gives it to you straight. You walk away with your head held high, knowing what you have to do.

This book allows the reader to become her daughter, her friend, the couple at whose wedding she speaks, the students listening to her commencement address. It is a personal and priceless gift.
Miyanni 4sho
Nov 06, 2008 Miyanni 4sho rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-quarter
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
A very nice read. Maya Angelou puts together some of her best writings. Some are essays, some poetry. small snippets from her many other books. She wrote the book in "dedication to her daughters" she does not have an actual daughter of her own. She wrote these short "chapters" as a love letter to the daughters of her heart. each has a lesson of what she has learned in life and what she wants to pass on to other women. I enjoyed this books quite a bit. She is a very wise and brilliant woman. anyo ...more
Anfal Alsultan
Aug 18, 2015 Anfal Alsultan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very touching. Thank you, Maya Angelou!
Nov 25, 2008 Tiffany rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
okay okay...i admit it....i can be a sucker for maya the words of poly styrene...i'm a cliche'.....BUT....this was NOT one of ms. angelou's fact it is the worst.....don't bother......her autobiographies are so much better
Elevate Difference
Maya Angelou's Letter to My Daughter is a beautiful tribute replete with lessons for younger generations of women. The prolific autobiographer chronicles her travels abroad in Europe and Africa and writes of the indignities and trials she faces at home. Every story provides a nugget of truth, its profundity startling and plainly humbling.

The volume is somewhat chronological; however, this does not make the writing any less lucid. There is no original moral. Angelou reminds us to count our bless
Dec 21, 2008 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It would be impossible to say what all I learned from this book. It will be one to keep close as my journey continues. I have read nearly all of Angelou's published books, so many characters and stories were familiar to me already. This book carefully selects from those experiences to offer the concise and meditative feel of a poem, condensed and more impactful, leaving a lingering need to reflect and somehow apply. My favorite pieces were the memories of her own mother, a few stories that in ju ...more
May 28, 2012 Paula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bought this as a gift to my own daughter... as well as purchasing a copy for myself. Some excerpts:

Write down your blessing. The ship of my life may or may not be sailing on calm and amiable seas. The challenging days of my existence may or may not be bright and promising. Stormy or sunny days, glorious or lonely nights, I maintain an attitude of gratitude. If I insist on being pessimistic, there is always tomorrow. Today I am blessed.

I am never proud to participate in violence, yet, I know tha
Mary Markis
Jan 18, 2009 Mary Markis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A quick and easy read. Maya gives some great insight to several facets in life, supported by personal experience and perspective.

Favorite quote from the book shed light into challenges I currently am presented with in my own life:

"When I find myself filling with rage over the loss of a beloved, I try as soon as possible to remember that my concerns and questions should be focused on what I learned or what I have yet to learn from my departed love. What legacy was left which can help me in teh a
Dec 10, 2013 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
Highly recommended. I listened to the audio book version, and particularly enjoyed that it was read by the author (and eloquent orator, I might add), Maya Angelou, herself. It added to the personal message of each of the short essays and enhanced my enjoyment overall. There are so many quotable moments, though, that I found that I'd really like a written copy of my own to go back to. Maya Angelou speaks her wisdom and opinions on the important virtues of life from her personal experiences, humbl ...more
Mar 03, 2009 Linda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: to every woman

I once heard Maya Angelou read from her most famous book “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.” Her presence is commanding her voice thick with empathy and deep understanding of life. She was in the looking back phase at that time and I was deeply moved by her insights. As a parting note she has penned a letter to the daughters she never had, whether they be black, white or a nice mocha color. My own mother’s recent passing made her honest, soulful, revealing, unique well of ancient wisdom even more
Jul 21, 2010 Rachel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite quotes:

When I decide to write anything, I get caught up in my insecurity despite the prior accolades. I think, uh, uh, now they will know I am a charlatan that I really cannot write and write really well. I am almost undone, then I pull out a new yellow pad and as I approach the clean page, I think of how blessed I am.

The ship of my life may or may not be sailing on calm and amiable seas. The challenging days of my existence may or may not be bright and promising. Stormy or s
Leah Claiborne
Aug 11, 2012 Leah Claiborne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a beautiful book filled with Angelou's life experiences in which she invites her audiences to take part of and learn from. Every women should read this, especially young women of today. It's a book I come back to each summer as I reflect on my own life and what my journey has taught me. We all face the same struggles, we all share and will experience the same emotions, we all go through phases and cycles of our lives. Letters to my Daughter is a quick must read that will have the reader ...more
Apr 08, 2015 Betty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: I think women, especially young women of color, would benefit from reading this.
Title: Letter to My Daughter
Author: Maya Angelou
Genre: Nonfiction, essay, memoir, poetry
Setting: Mostly America, with some parts of the book set elsewhere in the world.
Reason for Reading: 50 book project book #13!
Relevant to the Project: This is one of a group of books I picked out from the "black studies" section at the Central Square branch library. I've enjoyed Angelou's prose in the past and thought I'd give it a shot.
Finished In: Days - about two of them. It's a quick read.
Pages: 192
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Maya Angelou, born Marguerite Ann Johnson April 4, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri, was an American poet, memoirist, actress and an important figure in the American Civil Rights Movement. In 2001 she was named one of the 30 most powerful women in America by Ladies Home Journal. Maya Angelou is known for her series of six autobiographies, starting with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, (1969 which was n ...more
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“I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.

(Popular misquote of "You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.")”
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