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Extended Audio Sample Stand the Storm: A Novel Audiobook, by Breena Clarke Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.13 out of 53.13 out of 53.13 out of 53.13 out of 53.13 out of 5 3.13 (8 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Breena Clarke, Richard Allen Narrator: Richard Allen Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2008 ISBN: 9781400178780
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Even though former slaves Annie Coats and her son Gabriel have managed to buy their freedom, their lives are still marked by constant struggle and sacrifice—to the extent that Annie secretly recalls her days on the plantation with fondness. Washington’s Georgetown neighborhood, where the Coatses are seeking to build their new lives—with Gabriel, a tailor, producing uniforms for soldiers and fine suits for pompous politicians, and Annie, a seamstress and laundress, catering to the nearby brothels and stately homes—is supposed to be a safe haven, a “promised land” for former slaves, but is effectively a frontier town, gritty and dangerous, with no laws protecting black people. In fact, the city’s own emancipation efforts in 1862 serve only to compromise the Coats family’s status, putting Gabriel’s three young daughters (each of them born free of free parents) at risk of becoming the property of the Coatses’ former master. The remarkable emotional energy with which the Coatses rise their daily battles—as they negotiate with their former owner, as they assist other former slaves en route to freedom, as they prepare for the encroaching war, and as they struggle to love each other enough—is what fuels this novel and makes its tragic denoument so devastating.

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Connie | 3/2/2011

    " This is a book that tells us what it was. How the suffering and humilation created a strong family bond. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Trinna | 2/23/2011

    " Started out much better than it ended. Not the most exciting book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gerianne | 2/5/2011

    " fairly brutal book about life in washington dc for family of slaves in the 1850's through 1870, who buy their way into freedom. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rebecca | 6/9/2010

    " Very good, engrossing, but the ending seem rushed and abrupt. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Megan | 4/14/2010

    " This was a very well-drawn picture of life for freed slaves in Georgetown during the Civil War. However, there were several threads that seemed to be going someone that were unceremoniously dropped, and the ending was very abrupt. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Hadley | 8/4/2009

    " Pre-Civil war slave life - good for 8th "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sara | 8/1/2009

    " Loved the characters...but it seemed to move slowly and then too fast at times. Not sure why, but I just didn't get into it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brenda | 6/11/2009

    " This was an excellent read and an interesting story about the slavery years in DC. "

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About the Author
Breena Clarke grew up in Washington, DC, and was educated at Webster College and Howard University. She is the author of two widely praised novels, River, Cross My Heart, which was a selection of Oprah's Book Club, and Stand the Storm. She lives in Jersey City, New Jersey.
About the Narrator

Richard Allen is an accomplished and respected theatrical actor whose work includes Ragtime and PBS’ Great Performances: Play On! His voice can be heard on numerous television and radio productions, as well as the animated series Jumanji.