Two New Books to Listen to:

Book Review: Malcolm X and Madame President

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I read the Malcom X story before as many have…. but the thought of having the actor / orator Lawrence Fishburn read the story was all I needed for another run.  I pre-ordered the book in the Audible format.   Fishburn did not disappoint.  While we know what’s coming, in his own authentic voce he owns the storytelling.

We witness Malcom’s beginnings, we are sadden by the death of his father that led to the downward spiral  and eventual separation of the family.  We travel with him to Detroit, Boston, and Harlem.  We relive the Civil Rights struggle.. and we feel the finality of his self-predicted end.

When I was done with listening, I thought what would have happened if Malcom had lived ? Would we be the same?  Would there be any difference in the society we live…  especially in this time of global socio-economic crisis.

The Lawrence Fishburn narrated version of The Autobiography of Malcolm X is well worth the reading of an American story by a great storyteller.

I had just finished reading the new book. “Caste” and was discussing it at a wedding reception.  As usual I canvased for any good books to add to my reading list and “Madame President” was suggested. 

The story starts with the only colonization attempt of the US in Africa, Libera.  The author claims her roots and attempts to herald the history, challenges, and successes of a war torn country.  There are passages that made me cringe and there were passages that made me almost cry.  However the continued strength and will of the women of Libera kept me engaged from cover to cover.

This is not an easy book to read — but the Audible version with the orator lapsing in and out of Liberian English was helpful in understanding the code-switching that was often done by Madame President.  I do think the author biased in her storytelling of Madame President, anyone who has supported the war criminal Charles Taylor must have a few skeletons in the closet.  However, the book delivers on a factual representation of the country up until the Ebola crisis.  A true case study in African leadership.

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