My Bother Moochie by Issac J. Bailey
What’s it about?
Journalist Isaac J. Bailey was only 9 years-old when he watched his older brother, and hero, being led off in handcuffs and charged with murder. Moochie would not return to the family for 32 years. Issac Bailey uses his skills as a journalist to look back and reflect on how this event shaped his life.
What did it make me think about?
This is a memoir that will make you think. You may or may not agree with all that is written but this memoir sure gives you a particular perspective. We all know the impact of crime on the victims, but this book demonstrates how crime and incarceration in the black community also has a powerful impact on the criminal as well as all those that love that person. "I've known that though some of my brothers have done monstrous things, they are not monsters, that they can be just as loving and compassionate and wise as the rest of us, that they are just as complex and fully deserving of being treated like full human beings- that their lives matter- despite what they've done."
Should I read it?
Although this book highlights the immense problem of race in America, it provides no easy answers. Maybe a start is reading books such as this. Books that give us a different perspective. Not only reading them but being open to what the author is saying. This author goes back and forth between raging at the white man and all that the white race has done to create these problems- to being angry at those young black men that make poor choices. Race in America is a complicated problem but if we don't start hearing each other it is not going to go away. Maybe this book is a start.
"The white man set us on an awful course, stealing us from Africa and enslaving and raping and beating us, then lynching us, then putting us on the back of the bus and forcing us to raise their children, who treated our men and women like kids, then banning us from the best neighborhoods and schools, then blaming us for the resulting maladies.
But many black families found a way to navigate through it all without succumbing to prison and fulfilling a stereotype. I know Mama wanted us in that number."
If you like this try-
Fire Shut up In My Bones by Charles M. Blow
Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance
Educated by Tara Westover
All Over But the Shouting by Rick Bragg
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― Charles William Eliot
3 to 4- I found some aspect of this book redeeming but would not recommend it.
5 to 6- I really enjoyed something about this book (characters, plot, meaning etc.) but it was uneven. Some aspects were stronger than others.
7 to 8- It was a good book. I liked lots of aspects of this book. I would recommend it.
9 to 10- I was sorry to turn the last page. I highly recommend this book!