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Extended Audio Sample The Fire Next Time Audiobook, by James Baldwin Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (6,068 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: James Baldwin Narrator: Jesse Martin Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2008 ISBN: 9781482977455
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At once a powerful evocation of his early life in Harlem and a disturbing examination of the consequences of racial injustice to both the individual and the body politic, James Baldwin galvanized the nation in the early days of the civil rights movement with his eloquent manifesto. The Fire Next Time stands as one of the essential works of our literature.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “So eloquent in its passion and so scorching in its candor that it is bound to unsettle any reader.”

    Atlantic

  • The Fire Next Time is ultimately a hopeful and healing essay. Baldwin ranges far in these hundred pages…What binds it all together is the eloquence, intimacy, and controlled urgency of the voice. Baldwin clearly paid in sweat and shame for every word in this text. What’s incredible is that he managed to keep his cool.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • “Actor Jesse L. Martin effectively re-creates the tone and tenor of the author’s view of America at the beginning of the 1960s. Martin chooses to eschew accents and flowery modulations and sticks to the story…Most striking is Baldwin’s reference to Robert Kennedy’s prediction that a black man would become the nation’s president sometime in the next forty years.”

    AudioFile

  • A #1 New York Times Bestseller
  • An Indie Next Recommendation

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Silvia Chenault | 2/19/2014

    " By chance I found this book at a local thriftstore for ten cents and it has changed my life forever. It took so much of my strength to finish it, because the truth in it was so painful. I recommend all Americans to read this book, too. It is essential for our country's survival and for true peace among our people. This work is one of the most important documents on racism I have ever read. Enlightening. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brett Myer | 2/14/2014

    " I read this for Great Books in college. It is one of my favorite books read through that beloved colloquium, by golley. I've got to read this again sometime. "No more water, the fire next time"...Classic! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leroy | 2/8/2014

    " I feel that this is a great book that every person should read. This was the first book by Balwdin that I read, so this style, at first, was hard to get by. Once I became accustomed to his style I was then able to glean the nuggets of gold between the lines. Baldwin poignantly and accurately describes the racial dilemma of his time. It is very interesting to see how his environment helped to reach some of his conclusions. These essays attach the racial issue at the forefront of the problem (The heart and mind).This book is a timeless book that can be applied to today. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kate | 2/2/2014

    " An excellent and unexpected critique of race in America. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Vern | 1/9/2014

    " My chains feel off when I read this book... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 P. Afua | 1/7/2014

    " As I mentioned in my other reviews, I read everything that Balwin wrote in my teens and early twenties. I need to re-read this in order to provide a review. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Zigforas | 1/1/2014

    " "But it is not permissible that the authors of devastation should also be innocent. It is the innocence which constitutes the crime." "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wade | 12/31/2013

    " As always, Baldwin is incisive, direct, and pitch-perfect in his essays on race, religion, and humanity. He is one of my favorite theologians. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kristin | 12/28/2013

    " He says, it is not necessary for the people to be cruel but that they be spineless. It was hard to read yet I could not put it down. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Zahreen | 11/11/2013

    " Excellent James Baldwin but also short - so you can always have time to read it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alex | 6/2/2013

    " the gifted writer narrates the reality of being black in America, from his personal experience. james baldwin is a brilliant wordsmith, an amazing storyteller, and a political clairvoyant. a fast, powerful and enjoyable read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 5/27/2013

    " I would describe this book as a thorough examination of race in America by a brilliant mind at a time when the overthrow of America seemed imminent. Amazing writing style in addition to compelling content. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Weston | 5/11/2013

    " The score is more a reflection on being distracted while I was reading than Baldwin's skill as a writer. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brian | 5/3/2013

    " Another side of the american quilt. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hannah L. | 2/25/2013

    " Lovely book that discusses race conflict in 1960's Harlem in a really personal and passionate way. Rhetoric that is really readable and genuine, and ideas that are worth grappling with! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Judith Angeles | 2/22/2013

    " I loved this essay! It was beautifully written and it was also a necessary book. James Baldwin is an Artivist! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Von | 12/18/2012

    " Just re-read this book after 8 years or so. It was just as moving the second time and a good reminder that the "problem of the 20th century" is still with us in the 21st. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura Avellaneda-Cruz | 9/5/2012

    " One of the best narrative essays I've ever read, possibly one of the most important for this country. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jose | 10/28/2011

    " excellent audio book, unabridged, excellent summary of race and need for community. need to read more by baldwin. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Vanessa | 8/3/2011

    " read and re-read. nonpareil. and sadly, still completely relevant. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Emma | 5/6/2011

    " The essays where honest and telling of the era of the US. I learned of life styles, political issues, and race differences. Baldwin's writings inspire any reader how to write with true grit and honesty. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott | 4/11/2011

    " Sadly, Baldwin's analysis is still extremely politically relevant. (And spot-on.) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 K.I. | 3/23/2011

    " Breathtaking, relevant and crucial. A must-read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Teresa | 1/2/2011

    " A very powerful little book. Though our society has moved pastmany of the worst offenses Baldwin details, the emotional and financial toll racism takes is as relevant as ever. I found his flirtation with the Nation of Islam particularly fascinating. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Valentina | 12/5/2010

    " I am in love with James Baldwin. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Megan | 11/10/2010

    " wow. i just really love james baldwin. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shanika | 9/29/2010

    " A book I will read again and again. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brian | 9/12/2010

    " Another side of the american quilt. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dave | 8/16/2010

    " Wisdom on every page of this book. "

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About the Author
Author James Baldwin

James Baldwin (1924–1987) was educated in New York. His first novel, Go Tell It on the Mountain, received excellent reviews and was immediately recognized as establishing a profound and permanent new voice in American letters. The appearance of The Fire Next Time in 1963, just as the civil rights movement was exploding across the American South, galvanized the nation and continues to reverberate as perhaps the most prophetic and defining statement ever written of the continuing costs of Americans’ refusal to face their own history. It became a national bestseller, and Baldwin was featured on the cover of Time. The next year, he was made a member of the National Institute of Arts and Letters and collaborated with the photographer Richard Avedon on Nothing Personal, a series of portraits of America intended as a eulogy for the slain Medger Evers. His other collaborations include A Rap on Race with Margaret Mead and A Dialogue with the poet-activist Nikki Giovanni. He also adapted Alex Haley’s The Autobiography of Malcolm X into One Day When I Was Lost. He was made a commander of the French Legion of Honor a year before his death, one honor among many he achieved in his life.

About the Narrator

Jesse Martin is an accomplished actor and singer on the stage and screen. He has spent nine seasons as Detective Edward Green on the perennial hit Law & Order. In the theater, Martin originated the role of Thomas B. “Tom” Collins in Jonathan Larson’s award-winning musical Rent. He also reprised his role in the film adaptation. An alumnus of NYU and a classically trained stage actor, Martin currently resides in Manhattan.