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Download A Hope in the Unseen: An American Odyssey from the Inner City to the Ivy League Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample A Hope in the Unseen: An American Odyssey from the Inner City to the Ivy League Audiobook, by Ron Suskind Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,131 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ron Suskind Narrator: Peter Jay Fernandez Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 1998 ISBN: 9781436126960
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New York Times bestselling investigative journalist Ron Suskind based this book on his Pulitzer Prize–winning articles about Cedric Jennings, a black youth struggling to survive one of DC’s toughest school districts. A moving portrait of inner city life, A Hope in the Unseen offers a view of life through the eyes of someone trying desperately to make his way up from the bottom. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “[An] extraordinary, formula-shattering book.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “A story of sheer human grit that should be read by others as example and inspiration.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “Absolutely gripping. A sort of suspense novel of the human psyche…It’s beyond good, it’s really extraordinary.”

    NPR

  • “As readers celebrate one young man’s singular persistence, they’ll wonder how we can help more inner-city kids share Cedric's lifeline of hope.”

    Booklist

  • A 1998 New York Times Notable Book for Nonfiction

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amy G | 2/11/2014

    " Very useful for discussing the transition to college and disparities in America. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 William | 2/7/2014

    " Suskind seems to draw some pretty broad conclusions from individuals in this one. Still, he describes some very compelling characters, Cedric Jennings (his mother, a few other family members, and friends from school), who was one of the only students to attend an Ivy from Ballou in a decade. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Steve | 2/5/2014

    " Suskind writes superb literary non-fiction: you see Cedric's experience through his eyes, and you also see through his mother's eyes, and a few of his classmates. Important book for anyone who cares about education, the equity gap, poverty in our urban areas--and just a strong story about the human spirit. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shannon | 1/29/2014

    " This was a beautiful look into an urban African-American male's inner journey from high school to the Ivy League. There were parts that made me weep as I considered the plight of African Americans in the urban core. I was totally rooting for Cedric. This is a must read for anyone to gain understanding into this segment of our society. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah Lorenz | 1/24/2014

    " Great insight into the life of a inner city kid struggling to succeed. Surprising Ann Arbor/Ypsi connection in the afterward. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Frenchhornbook | 1/22/2014

    " It's saving grace was that it was well-written. The story itself was weird because Cedric has some anger issues so what was a normal day could quickly turn into the Night of the Five Fist-flinging Fights with Friends (okay, they didn't throw many fists, but it fits my description). I would never have read this if I didn't have to... Don't want to go to college at Brown... not that I ever did, it's just a weird place and I don't like the North East. Now on to a Brilliant Solution. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elly | 1/14/2014

    " Such an excellent and well documented journey! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cathy Hause | 1/12/2014

    " Fabulous story yet chilling account of one young man's intrepid journey through the DC public school system "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carla | 1/10/2014

    " A look at an inner city boy who goes on to attend Brown University. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cathy | 1/7/2014

    " I read this book about 13 years ago around the time it was first published. it's such an inspiring true story. I'd be interested in reading it again to see how far we've come in addressing race, class and education. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karen Christensen | 1/4/2014

    " This was such an interesting and satisfying book! It's easy to read and I found myself (silently) cheering for Cedric Jennings. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catherine | 12/30/2013

    " Not a flashy book but a solid true story. It gave me another reason to admire kids who just try harder against big odds. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alison | 11/12/2013

    " A story of a kid growing up in the poor, black area of DC that is determined to go to an Ivy League School and what he has to undertake to reach his goal. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lynsey | 10/15/2013

    " wonderfully told, compelling story of a young man's journey from Ballou High School in DC to Brown. Gets to the core of why we work so hard at Higher Achievement. We will be honoring Ron Suskind (author) at our benefit this year. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Debbi | 6/23/2013

    " This was fantastic - I highly recommend it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leanne | 5/27/2013

    " Excellent book. I highly recommend it to everyone, especially educators. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 5/17/2013

    " I'm giving this book 4 stars because I feel it merits that rating, but I didn't love it in the way I've loved other books with that rating. It was a slow read, like a newspaper (it was written by a journalist), but it had a lot of depth, was very thought provoking, and felt real. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 calandra | 12/27/2012

    " i read a review of this in the paper and decided to read it. it's a good narrative of the journey. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Paul Medici | 11/23/2012

    " What a wonderful book. Not sappy. Realism w/o condescension. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tommy Key | 10/17/2012

    " A stunning powerful book that offers a glimpse into a life of a dreamer. A story of faith and belief that moved me to tears "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeff | 6/27/2012

    " Very moving story of an African American young man growing up in the inner city in hopes to achieve academic excellence when many pressures fighting against him. A real and honest story that inspires. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ari | 2/1/2012

    " One of my favorites. A book about a teen in inner-city DC who is basically the only kid in his neighborhood to go to college. The contrast between his two lives is stark and riveting. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Tamara | 8/13/2011

    " This might have been an okay book except for a few things --- it was tremendously long....and predictable. I could have read the first few chapters and the last and easily filled in everything in between and it wouldn't have taken me as many pages as this book did to do it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cassie | 7/19/2011

    " Almost a five star! Definitely recommended! Basically it's a TJ nerd in Southeast DC. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Aki | 5/20/2011

    " Incredibly powerful story of an inner city kid, Cedric, and his path to the ivy league. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Susan | 4/23/2011

    " One of my all time favorites.... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Allison | 3/15/2011

    " A book everyone should read! I haven given this book as a gift, and will continue to make sure I always have a copy on my bookshelf. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kam | 2/3/2011

    " I thought the book was an awesome story of hard times to triumph. Easy read, could not put it down. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 CathyD | 12/15/2010

    " Best book I've read in a while. Enjoyable to read. It's also a fast read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Molly Bear | 10/26/2010

    " A great back to school read! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 10/4/2010

    " I'm giving this book 4 stars because I feel it merits that rating, but I didn't love it in the way I've loved other books with that rating. It was a slow read, like a newspaper (it was written by a journalist), but it had a lot of depth, was very thought provoking, and felt real. "

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About the Author

Ron Suskind is the author of The Way of the World, The One Percent Doctrine, The Price of Loyalty, and A Hope in the Unseen. From 1993 to 2000 he was the senior national affairs writer for The Wall Street Journal, where he won a Pulitzer Prize. He lives in Washington, D.C.

About the Narrator

Peter Jay Fernandez is an accomplished audiobook narrator who has won three AudioFile Earphones Awards and an Audie Award in 2009. He has also appeared on television, film, and stage. His appearances include roles in Law & Order, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and the musical Thunder Knocking on the Door.