Donna Brazile, Yolanda Caraway, Leah Daughtry, Minyon Moore, and Veronica Chambers
PositiveThe Washington PostIf you aren’t an insider, fasten your seat belt. You’ll learn a lot about the inside machinations of the Democratic Party. You’ll also discover the backgrounds of these women. All come from relatively humble beginnings, and all are grateful and amazed at the roads they have traveled ... I can hear each of their voices in the book, and I must compliment their co-writer Veronica Chambers, who has deftly interwoven their challenges with their political histories, and their mother wit with their sage wisdom ... These women have cried together, yelled at each other, reconciled and been pulled apart again, and the book is candid about some of it ... Anyone who has considered politics will be renewed by the strength, vision and sharing of this volume.
Janet Dewart Bell
MixedThe Washington PostThe book is absorbing but uneven ... This book also would have benefited from a more substantial introduction. To be sure, Bell explains her motivation for the book, writing movingly about her mom, and about issues of gender and leadership, but she does not fully develop those themes or knit the stories of the nine women into an overarching narrative about gender relations in the movement ... Bell doesn’t explain why she chose these nine women. She also doesn’t explain their order in the book ... There is a memoir or autobiography in each of these women. But they are perhaps too modest to lift themselves up, which is why Bell’s book is so valuable. In many ways, I wanted more from this book. At the same time, this is just enough to encourage each of us to celebrate the women of the civil rights movement and to learn more about them.
Henry Louis Gates Jr.
PositiveThe Washington PostIt’s a fun book that, in no particular order, asks and answers questions about ancient history, Afro-European history and Afro-Latin history. Indeed, this book is global time travel, looking at history through the lens of African American lives … The book brims with conversation pieces but also with the pain that is all too evident when discussing the ways enslaved people of African descent lived here in the United States and around the world … I would have liked to see more information about women, the working class (what about African Americans in unions?) and the marginalized in this volume.
RaveThe Washington PostAmazement, annoyance, impatience, assistance, resistance, challenge, focus, concern and love flowed in the decades of correspondence between Murray and Roosevelt. There were so many times when these two women could have turned away from each other, severing a connection without acrimony, but with the simple assertion that things fall apart. Instead, through sheer determination, Murray and Roosevelt decided to be friends. Their lives were each the richer for it, and our lives are richer for the accounting of their friendship in this important book.