Mary's Reviews > The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
Nov 10, 2010
I loved this book on several levels--though with one caveat. First and foremost, by narrating the lives of three very different participants in the Great Migration, Wilkerson fleshes out an important historical story that most of us know only in general outline, if that. The details of routine racial discrimination that these individuals faced both before and after coming to the North are horrifyingly vivid and impossible to ignore. Wilkerson's research is thorough and deep, and her (somewhat controversial) comparisons of African American migrants to immigrant populations strike me as particularly insightful. Her prose can indeed be luminous at times. But why, oh why, didn't her editor remove the frequent and maddening repetition of simple facts (Ida Mae was terrible at picking cotton; newspapers reported "without apology" the disparity between white and black teachers' pay), often within a short span of pages? As an editor, I may be unusually attuned to and distracted by this flaw--but I know I'm not the only one. Given the monumental effort involved in researching and writing (and marketing) this book, I wish someone had given the final manuscript the detailed editorial attention it deserved.
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November 10, 2010 – Shelved