Breaking Night: Book summary and reviews of Breaking Night by Liz Murray

Breaking Night

A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard

By Liz Murray

Breaking Night
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2010,
    352 pages.

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Book Summary

In the vein of The Glass Castle, Breaking Night is the stunning memoir of a young woman who at age fifteen was living on the streets, and who eventually made it into Harvard.

Liz Murray was born to loving but drug-addicted parents in the Bronx. In school she was taunted for her dirty clothing and lice-infested hair, eventually skipping so many classes that she was put into a girls' home. At age fifteen, Liz found herself on the streets when her family finally unraveled. She learned to scrape by, foraging for food and riding subways all night to have a warm place to sleep.

When Liz's mother died of AIDS, she decided to take control of her own destiny and go back to high school, often completing her assignments in the hallways and subway stations where she slept. Liz squeezed four years of high school into two, while homeless; won a New York Times scholarship; and made it into the Ivy League. Breaking Night is an unforgettable and beautifully written story of one young woman's indomitable spirit to survive and prevail, against all odds.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review... an engaging, powerfully motivational story... [an] incredible story of true grit." - Publishers Weekly

"As much as it is a memoir, Breaking Night is a primer on how poverty and drug abuse create a heartbreaking underclass of children, one that goes largely unnoticed. By the truly uplifting ending, Liz Murray has shown us the worst, and the very best, of America." - Haven Kimmel, author of A Girl Named Zippy and She Got Up Off the Couch

"Liz Murray shows us that the human spirit has infinite ability to grow and can never be limited by circumstance. Breaking Night is a beautifully written, heartfelt memoir that will change the way you look your community, the obstacles in your own life and the American Dream. An inspiration, a must read." - Robert Redford

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More Information

More Information

Liz Murray completed high school and won a New York Times scholarship while homeless, and graduated from Harvard University in 2009. She has been awarded The White House Project Role Model Award, a Christopher Award, as well as the Chutzpah Award, which was given to Liz by Oprah Winfrey. Lifetime Television produced a film about Liz's life, Homeless to Harvard: The Liz Murray Story. Today, she travels the world to deliver motivational speeches and workshops to inspire others. Liz is the founder and director of Manifest Trainings, a New York-based company that empowers adults to create the results they want in their own lives.

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