Between the World and Me
In a series of essays, written as a letter to his son, Coates confronts the notion of race in America and how it has shaped American history, many times at the cost of black bodies and lives. Thoughtfully exploring personal and historical events, from his time at Howard University to the Civil War, the author poignantly asks and attempts to answer difficult questions that plague modern society. In this short memoir, the "Atlantic" writer explains that the tragic examples of Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, and those killed in South Carolina are the results of a systematically constructed and maintained assault to black people--a structure that includes slavery, mass incarceration, and police brutality as part of its foundation. From his passionate and deliberate breakdown of the concept of race itself to the importance of the Black Lives Matter movement, Coates powerfully sums up the terrible history of the subjugation of black people in the United States. A timely work, this title will resonate with all teens--those who have experienced racism as well as those who have followed the recent news coverage on violence against people of color.

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Book TitleBetween the World and Me
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Between the World and Me Reviews

  • Bill  Kerwin
    Sep 18, 2016

    Bill Kerwin

    Sometime early in my reading of this book, I felt in my gut I had encountered a classic. Not a best-seller—this book is already that—but a classic. I envisioned stack upon paperback stack piled on metal shelves in university bookstores, shelves labeled Black Studies 301 but a...

  • Brina
    Aug 9, 2016


    Ta-Nehisi Coates' Between the World and Me is an essay to his teenaged son. Toni Morrison on the cover maintains that this should be required reading. In this short yet powerful message, Coates delivers a rap on race and offers hope to African Americans in their struggle to maintain th...

  • Roy Lotz
    Jun 15, 2016

    Roy Lotz

    My understanding of the universe was physical, and its moral arc bent toward chaos then concluded in a box. Reviewing this book is like reviewing an explosion. That’s how it feels, at least. Snob that I am, I was at first skeptical that such a popular book could be any good; I fo...

  • Ameriie
    Jun 3, 2016


    Penetrating. For some a revelation, for others an affirmation of something we've always known and felt. A must-read. ...

  • J.L.   Sutton
    May 30, 2016

    J.L. Sutton

    I was both very impressed and frustrated with Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me. Written as a letter to his son, Coates presents racism and white privilege as a visceral experience, with much discussion, especially early in the book about what it means to lose your (black...

  • Petra X
    May 12, 2016

    Petra X

    I will be interested to see how much this applies to Blacks in general as I live on an island where the Black man is king, but he only got there because of slavery. Quite a few of the kids go away to university in the US, to 'historically black' colleges and come back full of the most ...

  • s.penkevich
    Mar 12, 2016


    An America that looks away is ignoring not just the sins of the past but the sins of the present and the certain sins of the future.The moment I really fell for Ta-Nehisi Coates was during his interview on the Diane Rehm’s show after he was asked his opinions on gun control. The q...

  • Rob Slaven
    Mar 10, 2016

    Rob Slaven

    I received this book free for review from ShelfAwareness in exchange for an honest review. Despite the privilege of receiving a free book, I’m absolutely candid about it below because I believe authors and readers will benefit most from honest reviews rather than vacuous 5-star re...

  • Darwin8u
    Feb 8, 2016


    “I would not have you descend into your own dream. I would have you be a conscious citizen of this terrible and beautiful world.” ― Ta-Nehisi Coates, Between the World and MeAwaken Fellow Dreamers. Ta-Nehisi Coates has written a book that runs the distance from the black...

  • Nicole~
    Jan 21, 2016


    Author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates unleashes a heated analysis of the profile of the African-American in our times, in his new book Between the World And Me. Written in epistolary form to his teenage son, Samori, he contemplates his personal experiences born and bred in a color-dis...