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His Name Is George Floyd (Pulitzer Prize Winner)

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His Name Is George Floyd (Pulitzer Prize Winner) by Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa
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May 17, 2022 | ISBN 9780593590423 | 813 Minutes

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“It is a testament to the power of His Name Is George Floyd that the book’s most vital moments come not after Floyd’s death, but in its intimate, unvarnished and scrupulous account of his life . . . a brilliantly revealing portrait of the structures of poverty, land theft and racism that shaped not only Floyd but also his kinship networks in the South. . . . Impressive.”
—The New York Times Book Review, Editors’ Choice

“[T]he definitive work on who Floyd was and what his murder triggered. Gripping, heartbreaking, revelatory.”
Oprah Daily

“[A]n expertly researched and excellent biography, a necessary and enlightening read for all.”
The Atlantic
“Masterful, thorough and even-handed.”
Associated Press

“A full, nuanced picture of the man whose murder sparked a movement.”
His Name Is George Floyd reaches way beyond the familiar narrative to consider the world of George Floyd, his country, his history, and the politics and policies that shaped his family—and the family of his murder, Derek Chauvin. It’s a feat of fresh reporting, and vivid, contextual contemporary history.”
—Chicago Tribune
“Detailed, vivid and moving.”
—The Washington Post, 50 Notable Works of Nonfiction

“This deeply reported biography reaches into history to help us understand how the forces of racism shaped every aspect of Floyd’s life, up to his tragic death.”
—NPR, Books We Love

“Sometimes a single book can change a national discussion, and certainly this is one. With diligence, respect, unflinching courage, His Name Is George Floyd affords tender, trenchant testimony to a man’s life and the lessons in the legacies of racism that took it.”
—Barnes & Noble, Best Books of the Year

“An incredibly powerful biography.”
—Walter Isaacson, Amanpour & Co.
“This is a profound book that everyone in this country needs to read.”
—Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!
“Sad, tragic, and such a good read.”
—Yamiche Alcindor, PBS Washington Week
“Impeccably researched . . . Interwoven with the biographical details are incisive sketches of the political and historical events that have shaped life for Floyd’s family and other Black Americans. This multifaceted and exceptionally informative account is both a moving testament to Floyd and a devastating indictment of America’s racial inequities.”
—Publishers Weekly,
starred review, Best Books 2022
“Writing with cogency and compassion, the authors free Floyd from the realm of iconography, restoring his humanity . . . A brilliant biography, history book, and searing indictment of this country’s ongoing failure to eradicate systemic racism.”
—Kirkus Reviews,
starred review, Best of 2022

“This gripping oral history offers a behind-the-scenes look at the man, his loved ones and community, and the aftermath of his horrific death . . . A wrenching chronicle of one of the most devastating events of our time . . . vital and illuminating.”
starred review, Editors’ Choice

“This landmark biography . . . puts the systemic racism Floyd endured his entire life on full, unflinching display.”
—Library Journal, Best Books 2022

“A healing book about a truly terrible moment . . . this social biography of George Floyd is a masterwork.”
—The Progressive

“Excellent, important . . . Samuels and Olorunnipa’s achievement is to bring to life the flesh-and-blood man behind the stereotype and statistics.”

“In painstaking detail and textured storytelling, Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa reveal how George Floyd fought to live his entire life. Since we know George Floyd’s death with tragic clarity, we must know Floyd’s America—and life—with tragic clarity. His Name Is George Floyd is essential for our times.”
—Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be an Antiracist
“A much-needed portrait of the life, times, and martyrdom of George Floyd, a chronicle of the racial awakening sparked by his brutal and untimely death, and an essential work of history I hope everyone will read.”
—Henry Louis Gates, Jr., author of The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song

 “A vivid, necessary portrait of a Black man in America, in all its nuance, tragedy, and fullness. In his death, George Floyd’s name became a rallying cry for the entire world. And this extraordinary book brings to life, with thoroughly reported detail, the indispensable context of systemic racism in which he lived.”
—Abby Phillip, CNN anchor and senior political correspondent

“In the years that have passed since his dying declaration—I can’t breathe—we have come to know George Floyd as a symbol but have known little of George Floyd the man. In a monumental work of reporting and storytelling, Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa reveal who George Floyd was in life, and the extent to which his death was the result not just of the callous choices of a single police officer but of four hundred years of societal decisions to devalue Black life. Amid a raging pandemic and urgent questions about our democracy, there has been little time to mourn George Floyd. The pages of this book provide us all with that that long-overdue opportunity.” 
—Wesley Lowery, Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter and author of They Can’t Kill Us All: The Story of the Struggle for Black Lives

His Name Is George Floyd is part eulogy, part elegy, and part psalm. It dares to reclaim the humanity of George Floyd while simultaneously forcing the reader to confront a truth saturated with sorrow and with elements of hope that many in the nation refuse to accept. If we as a nation refuse to ‘say his name’ and face this tragic moment, we shall condemn our democracy to the lower circle of Dante’s Inferno. Let us ‘say his name’ and thoughtfully read and be moved by this powerful work of journalism and prose.”
—Reverend Otis Moss III

“This book is a wondrous feat of vivid writing and deep reporting, from the way it leads the reader through George Floyd’s final fateful day on earth to its masterly account of Floyd’s hopes and frustrations in the larger context of race in America.”
—David Maraniss, Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter and author of Barack Obama: The Story
His Name Is George Floyd is a sobering, deeply intimate account of George Floyd’s life and all that he had to carry and contend with as a Black man coming of age in America. In a remarkable feat of reporting, Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa help us come to know Floyd as a full, rich, complicated human being, whose murder and whose journey in life forces us to reckon with the unquestionable truth that race still very much matters in this country. Thank you Samuels and Olorunnipa for taking us behind the headlines.”
—Alex Kotlowitz, author of There Are No Children Here: The Story of Two Boys Growing Up in the Other America

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