Summary and book reviews of My Name is Not Friday by Jon Walter

My Name is Not Friday

by Jon Walter

My Name is Not Friday by Jon Walter X
My Name is Not Friday by Jon Walter
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Jan 2016, 384 pages
    Paperback:
    May 2017, 400 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Bradley Sides
Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

"Samuel's endearing, immersive narration makes the novel a fascinating and unforgettable account of a brutal and shameful chapter in America's history." - Kirkus

Well-mannered Samuel and his mischievous younger brother Joshua are free black boys living in an orphanage during the end of the Civil War. Samuel takes the blame for Joshua's latest prank, and the consequence is worse than he could ever imagine. He's taken from the orphanage to the South, given a new name - Friday - and sold into slavery. What follows is a heartbreaking but hopeful account of Samuel's journey from freedom, to captivity, and back again.

Chapter 1

I know that I'm with God.

He's with me in the darkness. He's close to me.

Not real close.

But close enough I know He's there.

Somewhere.

I can feel Him—so I know He must be.


It was Him that brought me here.

At least, I think He did. Only it ain't what I was expecting.

I never thought it'd be dark here—but it is. It's real dark. Pitchdark.And it can't be nighttime 'cause there's birds singing. There's ablackbird and a sparrow. There's all sorts. And them birds don't singat night.

'Cept maybe they do in heaven. Maybe they sing here all the time.


If I shift my head, it hurts me inside and out. So I don't try to move.I stay as still as I can.


It's kinda damp here in the darkness. I got it up inside my nose. Amusky smell. Like fur. Like rabbit. Yeah, maybe it's like a rabbit.And there's another smell, a whiff of old shoes, like when youwear 'em for too long after they get wet. ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year
  • More about membership!

Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

My Name is Not Friday feels necessary. Walter has crafted a wonderfully moving young adult novel that deserves mentioning alongside M. T. Anderson’s recent classic Octavian Nothing books...continued

Full Review (684 words).

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access, become a member today.

(Reviewed by Bradley Sides).

Media Reviews

School Library Journal
Starred Review. Pair this lyrically written historical novel with the informational text Stolen into Slavery: The True Story of Solomon Northup, Free Black Man by Judith Fradin (National Geographic, 2013) or Northup's own Twelve Years a Slave. 12 and up.

Kirkus Reviews
Starred Review. Samuel's endearing, immersive narration makes the novel a fascinating and unforgettable account of a brutal and shameful chapter in America's history. A heartbreaking story about family, justice, and the resilience of the human spirit.

Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Walter masterfully constructs the world of the plantation and presents a large population of complex and distinctive characters, resulting in a rich, thought-provoking, and deeply satisfying book.

Reader Reviews

marianna

i loved this this book
This book is amazing and taught me about slavery. This book has a lot of detail and i love how the author, Jon Walter, explained every tiny part in this book.

Write your own review!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book

Freeborn Black Children Sold Into Slavery

Freedom is a wonderful thing. It allows us choices in where we go and how we live. Without it, our lives would be very different. Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, which freed slaves, was signed in 1863. Just think: it's only been 150 years that freedom has been the law in the United States.

Solomon NorthrupBefore Lincoln's signing there were, of course, freeborn black people; however, their freedom wasn't simple. Some were tricked or stolen into slavery. Many of us are familiar with the true story of Solomon Northup, the free man who was captured and sold into a terrible twelve years of slavery. His story, 12 Years a Slave, was a popular book, and was later made into an Academy Award-winning film.

While the stories ...

This "beyond the book" feature is available to non-members for a limited time. Join today for full access.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

If you liked My Name is Not Friday, try these:

  • Anger Is a Gift jacket

    Anger Is a Gift

    by Mark Oshiro

    Published 2019

    About this book

    A story of resilience and loss, love and family, testifying to the vulnerability and strength of a community living within a system of oppression.

  • A Land of Permanent Goodbyes jacket

    A Land of Permanent Goodbyes

    by Atia Abawi

    Published 2019

    About this book

    More books by this author

    Narrated by Destiny, this heartbreaking - and timely - story of refugees escaping from war-torn Syria is masterfully told by a foreign news correspondent who experienced the crisis firsthand.

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member
Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Seine
    The Seine
    by Elaine Sciolino
    Of the 24 members who reviewed Elaine Sciolino's The Seine: The River that Made Paris for BookBrowse...
  • Book Jacket: Fireborne
    Fireborne
    by Rosaria Munda
    Inspired by classical political theory and the French Revolution, Rosaria Munda's YA debut Fireborne...
  • Book Jacket: Frankissstein
    Frankissstein
    by Jeanette Winterson
    Jeanette Winterson's futurist sci-fi/alternative history hybrid unfolds in two main timelines. In ...
  • Book Jacket: Unbreakable
    Unbreakable
    by Richard Askwith
    In this well-researched biography, journalist Richard Askwith takes readers on a journey into 1930s ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    The Seine
    by Elaine Sciolino

    "A soulful, transformative voyage along the body of water that defines the City of Light."
    —Lauren Collins
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The In-Betweens
    by Mira Ptacin

    "A fascinating history of an American community of Spiritualists... a fabulous read."
    —Elizabeth Gilbert
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Wild Game

Wild Game: My Mother, Her Lover, and Me (Memoir)

A Best of Fall Title from: People, Entertainment Weekly, BuzzFeed, NPR, BBC, and many more!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

T Bite T B

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.