Oscar Buzz: 12 YEARS A SLAVE

Appearing in select theaters on Friday, 12 Years A Slave arrived with Oscar buzz. Now it looks like it will also be a box office hit. Opening in just 19 theaters, The Hollywood Reporter says it achieved “one of the top averages ever for a movie opening in that number of theaters.”

The word “harrowing” appears in nearly every review. As harrowing as the movie is, the Daily Beast notes that the memoir it is based on is “even more appalling.”

12 Years a SlaveFirst published in 1853, it sold well for its time, but was eclipsed by a more famous work, the fictional Uncle Tom’s Cabin. The Baton Rouge Advocate recently recounted the story of how Northup’s book was rediscovered. In the 1930’s a 12-year-old girl, Sue Eakin, came across a copy, fell in love with it, making it her life’s work to bring it back into print. Working with a New Orleans history professor, the two verified that the book is a firsthand account of slavery and got it republished in 1968 through LSU Press.

Assigned in college courses, it is now available in many editions, both print and audio. Click through for information on recent releases.

Official tie-in:
12 Years a Slave12 Years a Slave: (Movie Tie-In), Solomon Northup
Edited by Henry Louis Gates,
Introduction by Ira Berlin,
Foreword by Steve McQueen
9780143125419, 0143125419
Trade paperback $16.00 US / $17.00 Can.


9781843914716-112 Years a Slave: A Memoir of Kidnap, Slavery and Liberation
by Solomon Northup

Hesperus Press
November 2013
Paperback; 9781843914716, 1843914719
$15.95 US / $17.95 Can.


9781476767345_c0e4eTwelve Years a Slave   by Solomon Northup
Introduction by, Dolen Perkins-Valdez, author of Wench

Atria / 37 Ink
November 19, 2013
Hardback; 9781476767345, 1476767343
$15.00 US


Also available in audio :


12 Years a Slave

Solomon Northup

Read By Richard Allen

Audio Sample



9781452606637 Twelve Years a Slave
Soloman Northup, Sean Crisden (Narrator)\

March 26, 2012

MP3 Audio Sample



Twelve Years a Slave
Soloman Northup,
Louis Gossett, Jr. (Narrator)

Audio sample on site

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