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Simeon’s Story An Eyewitness Account of the Kidnapping of Emmett Till Simeon Wright and Herb Boyd “Crystal clarity and blistering prose . . . . [A] powerful, important memoir. Simeon’s Story is a story you must read.” —Savannah Morning News “Simeon’s story is one that must be heard and never forgotten. In simple, plain language, Wright describes an event that shocked the conscience of the nation and gave birth to the modern-day civil rights movement in America.” —John Lewis, U.S. congressman “It is my hope that [Simeon’s Story] renews our efforts to deal with the nation’s lingering inequities, particularly the hundreds of unsolved murder cases from the civil rights era.” —Rev. Al Sharpton, president, National Action Network “Simeon’s Story gets to the heart of the tragedy and, more importantly, dispels the lies, myths, and distortions that have obscured the truth.” —Keith Beauchamp, producer and director, The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till • Co-op available • New in paper; also available in cloth (9781556527838)

Excerpt: It was a typically bright Mississippi morning, when the August ground is blistering hot hours before breakfast is even served. There was general excitement around our house because this was Monday and the first day of the cotton harvest on our sharecropper farm, and because Bobo was with us. (We didn’t know his name was Emmett until after he was kidnapped and killed.) It wasn’t unusual for grown ups to visit us from up North, but to have a relative your own age was special, and we could hardly contain our excitement. Bobo had kept me up all night, telling me all kinds of stories and what it was like in Chicago now that the weather was changing. I asked him what he would be doing up there if he hadn’t come to visit us. He said he would probably be having fun with his other friends up there. Summers in Chicago, he told me, were wonderful and he really enjoyed going to Lincoln Park where there were rides, picnics, swimming, and a variety of outdoor events. I fell asleep that night and dreamed of Chicago and playing in the park with Bobo and his friends.

A modern tragedy, this story has had a great impact on race relations in America. Emmett Till’s kidnapping and murder, a grotesque crime in a Southern backwater that became the catalyst for the civil rights movement, is explained in this dramatic narrative by the cousin who was present every step of the way. Simeon Wright saw and heard his cousin Emmett whistle at Caroline Bryant at a grocery store and slept in the same bed with him when her husband came in and took Emmett away; he was there during the aftermath of the murder, and at the trial, where his father testified. This gripping coming-of-age memoir may not bring closure to the Till case, whose perpetrators were left unpunished, but it will set the facts straight about that life-changing incident in 1955. Simeon Wright is Emmett Till’s cousin. A major figure in the documentary The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till, he has been profiled in the Washington Post and has appeared on Tavis Smiley and Court TV. He lives in Countryside, Illinois. Herb Boyd has published 18 books, including We Shall Overcome: The History of the Civil Rights Movement as It Happened, and is managing editor of the Black World Today. He lives in New York City. AFRICAN AMERICAN/AUTOBIOGRAPHY AGES 12 & UP, GRADES 7 & UP, 160 PAGES, 5.5 X 8.5 10 B & W PHOTOS, 1 CHART, 1 MAP TRADE PAPER, $12.95 (CAN $13.95)




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