SINGIN' AND SWINGIN' AND GETTIN' MERRY LIKE CHRISTMAS by Maya Angelou

SINGIN' AND SWINGIN' AND GETTIN' MERRY LIKE CHRISTMAS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The prolific, resilient Maya Angelou continues her autobiography in this sunny tour of her twenties, covering her first positive contact with whites, a short-lived marriage to a Greek sailor, and the snowballing of her theatrical career. Tosh Angelos knew black jazz and showed concern for her son Clyde but that wasn't enough: they! separated after about two years--he'd lost his liberty, she'd surrendered her independence. She changed her name but not her spirit, started dancing in a strip joint ("Be real sexy. And don't leave your purse in the dressing room"), soon landed a job at the prestigious Purple Onion. Then a major choice: a Saint Subber play on Broadway (with Capote in the wings) or a Porgy and Bess tour of Europe. She chose Porgy and cavorted through the continent and North Africa in a grand company. Steeled by her mother's cautious advice but missing her young son, she took it all in and relives it here with enthusiasm, poetry and wit. She felt an emotional bond to servants in Egypt, intellectual ties to Israel; always there were strangers who surprised her with their sudden attachment: a Slavic family volunteered Robeson's "Deep River," Mr. Julian sent his heart and promised more, a ship captain warned her off champagne before a coming storm. Her long absence was not without its consequences: Clyde had his troubles at home, and Maya returned to answer for her neglect. Nevertheless her trip seems an enchantment, a sign of her sense of adventure and many, many talents. Like found money, she makes you feel richer for the discovery.
Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1976
ISBN: 081298031X
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Random House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 1976




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