Photo Credit Troy Johnson, AALBC.com
James McBride is an award-winning writer and musician. He has been a staff writer for The Washington Post, People magazine, and The Boston Globe. His memoir and tribute to his mother, The Color of Water, spent more than two years on the New York Times bestseller list, was published worldwide, and was the winner of the prestigious Anisfield-Wolf Book Award. As a composer, he won the American Music Theater Festival's Stephen Sondheim Award for his jazz/pop musical Bobos, and has composed songs for Anita Baker, Grover Washington, Jr., and Gary Burton. A jazz saxophonist, he has performed with Rachelle Farrell and with legendary jazz performer Little Jimmy Scott.
McBride's novel, Miracle at St. Anna, was adapted into a big budget major motion picture. Read an interview of the film's director, Spike Lee. McBride also cowrote Spike Lee's 2012 film Red Hook Summer.
McBride holds several honorary doctorates and is a Distinguished Writer in Residence at New York University. Read the transcript of barnesandnoble.com on-line chat featuring Mr. McBride.
Hardcover: 432 pages
Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover (August 20, 2013)
Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches ,
The story of a young boy born a slave who joins John Brown’s antislavery
crusade—and who must pass as a girl to survive.
Henry Shackleford is a young slave living in the Kansas Territory in 1857, when the region is a battleground between anti- and pro-slavery forces. When John Brown, the legendary abolitionist, arrives in the area, an argument between Brown and Henry’s master quickly turns violent. Henry is forced to leave town—with Brown, who believes he’s a girl.
Over the ensuing months, Henry—whom Brown nicknames Little Onion—conceals his true identity as he struggles to stay alive. Eventually Little Onion finds himself with Brown at the historic raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859—one of the great catalysts for the Civil War.
An absorbing mixture of history and imagination, and told with McBride’s meticulous eye for detail and character, The Good Lord Bird is both a rousing adventure and a moving exploration of identity and survival.
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Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Riverhead Hardcover (February 5, 2008)
Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches
From the New York Times-bestselling author of The Color
of Water comes a powerful page-turner about a runaway slave and a
determined slave catcher.
Nowhere has the drama of American slavery played itself out with more tension than in the dripping swamps of Maryland's eastern shore, where abolitionists such as Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman, born less than thirty miles apart, faced off against nefarious slave traders in a catch-me-if-you-can game that fueled fear and brought economic hardship to both white and black families. Trapped in the middle were the watermen, a group of America's most original and colorful pioneers, poor oystermen who often found themselves caught between the needs of rich plantation owners and the roaring Chesapeake, which often claimed their lives.
The powerful web of relationships in a small Chesapeake Bay town collapses as two souls face off in a gripping page-turner. Liz Spocott, a young runaway who has odd dreams about the future of the colored race, mistakenly inspires a breakout from the prison attic of a notorious slave thief named Patty Cannon. As Cannon stokes revenge, Liz flees into the nefarious world of the underground railroad with its double meanings and unspoken clues to freedom known to the slaves of Dorchester County as "The Code." Denwood Long, a troubled slave catcher and eastern shore waterman, is coaxed out of retirement to break "The Code" and track down Liz.
Filled with rich history-much of the story is drawn from historical events-and told in McBride's signature lyrical storytelling style, Song Yet Sung brings into full view a world long misunderstood in American fiction: how slavery worked, and the haunting, moral choices that lived beneath the surface, pressing both whites and blacks to search for relief in a world where both seemed to lose their moral compass. This is a story of tragic triumph, violent decisions, and unexpected kindness.
Format: Hardcover, 304pp.
Publisher: Putnam Publishing Group, The
Pub. Date: January 2002
James McBride's powerful memoir, The Color of Water, was a publishing phenomenon, spending more than two years on the New York Times bestsellers list and becoming required reading in high schools and colleges across the country. Now, in his long-awaited second book, McBride turns his highly acclaimed talent as a storyteller to fiction.
Based on the historical incident of an unspeakable massacre at the site of St. Anna Di Stazzema, a small village in Tuscany, and on the experiences of the famed Buffalo soldiers from the 92nd Division in Italy during World War II, Miracle of St. Anna is a singular evocation of war, cruelty, passion, and heroism. It is the story of four American Negro soldiers, a band of partisans, and an Italian boy who encounter a miracle-though perhaps the true miracle lies in themselves.
Traversing class, race, and geography, Miracle at St. Anna is above all a hymn to the brotherhood of man and the power to do good that lives in each of us. It reveals to us a little-known but fascinating moment in history through the eyes and imagination of a gifted writer. Like The Color of Water, James McBride's stunning first novel will change the way we perceive ourselves and our world.
In 2008 the movie's script, adapted by James McBride as adapted into a major motion Miracle at St. Anna. The film was directed by Oscar-nominated director Spike Lee and is a big budget WWII saga shot mostly in Europe. The four American Negro soldiers are portrayed by Derek Luke, Laz Alonso, Michael Ealy and Omar Benson Miller.
Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother
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Format: Hardcover, 228pp.
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons
Pub. Date: January 1996
This "fascinating . . . superbly written" (Boston Globe) national bestseller
tells the story of James McBride and his mother--a rabbi's daughter, born in Poland and
raised in the South, who fled to Harlem, married a black man, founded a church, and put 12
children through college. Movie rights optioned by Midge Sanford and Sarah Pilsbury.
Targeted print features. Read an excerpt from Chapter 1
From The Publisher - Putnam :
"James McBride grew up one of twelve siblings in the all-black housing projects of Red Hook, Brooklyn, the son of a black minister and a woman who would not admit she was white. The object of McBride's constant embarrassment and continuous fear for her safety, his mother was an inspiring figure, who through sheer force of will saw her dozen children through college, and many through graduate school. McBride was an adult before he discovered the truth about his mother: The daughter of a failed itinerant Orthodox rabbi in rural Virginia, she had run away to Harlem, married a black man, and founded an all-black Baptist church in her living room in Red Hook. In her son's remarkable memoir, she tells in her own words the story of her past. Around her narrative, James McBride has written a powerful portrait of growing up, a meditation on race and identity, and a poignant, beautifully crafted hymn from a son to his mother."
Process, Volume One
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James McBride (Artist)
Audio CD (August 26, 2003)
Original Release Date: August 26, 2003
Number of Discs: 1
Label: Cuddy Sounds
This CD is part of an upcoming documentary about the lives of "ordinary" jazz musicians, those who play the music, who love it, who make great sacrifices in order to live the jazz life and keep the music alive.
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