On the Southern Literary Trail discussion

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Maya Angelou's Autobiography, #1)
This topic is about I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
25 views
Group Reads: Pre-1980 > Initial Impressions: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou – February 2020

Comments Showing 1-14 of 14 (14 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Tom, "Big Daddy" (new) - rated it 4 stars

Tom Mathews | 2504 comments Mod
Comments on this board should be written with the assumption that not all readers have finished the book. Please avoid revealing any spoilers.


Judi | 398 comments I am listening to the audio version of this book. It is read by Maya Angelou. I am only a few chapters in and thus far it is like a dash of cold water in the face regarding the specifics of the racial divide Maya experienced as a young kid living in a small rural town in the South. I hear the memory of the pain, anger in Maya's voice as she reads the book.


message 3: by Diane, "Miss Scarlett" (new)

Diane Barnes | 3877 comments Mod
I am waiting for the audio version as well, simply because I love her voice and think she would inject all the emotion she felt as she was living it. It's not going to happen this month because of life events, but I will get to it.


Judi | 398 comments It is a visceral listening experience thus far. I hear the anger in her voice. She certainly felt the lash of racism and fear that permeated her youth. My Mom was raised in a rural small town during the Great Depression. She was close in age to Maya Angelou and she has shared her experiences of poverty during those hard times. There was certainly a class divide as well as a racial divide. A tough book.


message 5: by Tom, "Big Daddy" (new) - rated it 4 stars

Tom Mathews | 2504 comments Mod
I think I should track down a copy of the audio version as well.


message 6: by Suzy (last edited Feb 08, 2020 11:02AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Suzy (goodreadscomsuzy_hillard) | 211 comments I listened to this last year and loved it! It is not easy to hear her talk about the difficult aspects and times of her life, but her writing is poetry and the saving grace is her great humor. As I said in my review, I cried and I laughed. Her life experiences infused and contributed to her storytelling - I appreciate that she tells it like it was, without varnish.


Judi | 398 comments Suzy wrote: "I listened to this last year and loved it! It is not easy to hear her talk about the difficult aspects and times of her life, but her writing is poetry and the saving grace is her great humor. As I..."
No varnish indeed! I am about halfway through the book and the prose is very stark and specific. Maya Angelou survived a tough childhood. I truly wonder where things go from there. I am now reflecting on her poem "On The Pulse of Morning". Spiritual. Hopeful. Inspirational. I had my children memorize it after she recited it at the Clinton Presidential Inauguration. I read it this January at a family picnic in honor of my Mom's 100th birthday at the graveyard. Mom loved that poem as well.


message 8: by Camie (new) - added it

Camie | 101 comments Please everyone cite your favorites. I’ve read this before but I’m going to review the ones mentioned. They’re all worthy of a good ponder. Starting with Julia’s nod to On The Pulse Of Morning.


message 9: by Camie (new) - added it

Camie | 101 comments Sorry Judi’s mention.


message 10: by Judi (new) - rated it 5 stars

Judi | 398 comments I must chuckle. It seems that I must be the only one in the Group "reading" I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings. Sigh.


message 11: by Kimberlee (new)

Kimberlee | 97 comments Judi, I’m a comin’! I’m still reveling in my Foote find. But Maya Angelou is my next stop, as I love her work as well:)


message 12: by Diane, "Miss Scarlett" (new)

Diane Barnes | 3877 comments Mod
I fully intended to read it this month, but life got in the way, so it will have to wait for me. But I am surprised at the lack of participation. Where are all those people who voted for it in the polls?


message 13: by Franky (last edited Feb 16, 2020 07:24PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Franky | 315 comments Judi wrote: "I must chuckle. It seems that I must be the only one in the Group "reading" I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings. Sigh."

No, I'm reading, just wanted to get further in before commenting. I'm up to about page 70. I know I'm going to sound like the polar opposite comment from the majority, as it seem that everyone loves this book, and I feel bad so saying this, but I'm really just not enjoying this one so far. Maybe it is something about memoirs that I just do not enjoy. Who knows?Maybe it is Maybe my opinion will change as I'm still fairly early in, but ...


message 14: by K (new) - rated it 4 stars

K (billielitetiger) | 13 comments I just started reading this, about one-third of the way. I agree, her sense of humor and writing style makes the horrific events bearable. The scene in the church was hilarious! Her speaking voice is awesome----enjoy! I did not know that she studied dance,that was her 1st career.


back to top