Rest in Power: The Enduring Life of Trayvon Martin

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Trayvon Martin’s parents take readers beyond the news cycle with an account only they could give: the intimate story of a tragically foreshortened life and the rise of a movement.

On a February evening in 2012, in a small town in central Florida, seventeen-year-old Trayvon Martin was walking home with candy and a can of juice in hand and talking on the phone with a friend when a fatal encounter with a gun-wielding neighborhood watchman ended his young life. The watchman was briefly detained by the police and released. Trayvon’s father—a truck driver named Tracy—tried to get answers from the police but was shut down and ignored. Trayvon’s mother, a civil servant for the city of Miami, was paralyzed by the news of her son’s death and lost in mourning, unable to leave her room for days. But in a matter of weeks, their son’s name would be spoken by President Obama, honored by professional athletes, and passionately discussed all over traditional and social media. And at the head of a growing nationwide campaign for justice were Trayvon’s parents, who—driven by their intense love for their lost son—discovered their voices, gathered allies, and launched a movement that would change the country.

Five years after his tragic death, Travyon Martin’s name is still evoked every day. He has become a symbol of social justice activism, as has his hauntingly familiar image: the photo of a child still in the process of becoming a young man, wearing a hoodie and gazing silently at the camera. But who was Trayvon Martin, before he became, in death, an icon? And how did one black child’s death on a dark, rainy street in a small Florida town become the match that lit a civil rights crusade?

Rest in Power, told through the compelling alternating narratives of Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, answers, for the first time, those questions from the most intimate of sources. It’s the story of the beautiful and complex child they lost, the cruel unresponsiveness of the police and the hostility of the legal system, and the inspiring journey they took from grief and pain to power, and from tragedy and senselessness to meaning.

Praise for Rest in Power

“A reminder—not only of Trayvon’s life and death but of the vulnerability of black lives in a country that still needs to be reminded they matter.”USA Today
 
“A brave, heart-rending narrative from the parents who lost their son far too soon.”Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
 
“Remarkably candid and deeply affecting.”Booklist (starred review)
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About the author

Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin are the founders of The Trayvon Martin Foundation, which aims to create community programming and raise awareness of the impact of gun violence and racial profiling on families. Fulton and Martin live in the Miami, Florida, area.
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Reviews

3.8
42 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Spiegel & Grau
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Published on
Jan 31, 2017
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Pages
352
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ISBN
9780812997248
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Personal Memoirs
Political Science / Civil Rights
Social Science / Discrimination & Race Relations
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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From the Hardcover edition.
Lisa Bloom
Many thought the election of our first African American president put an end to the conversation about race in this country, and that America had moved into a post-racial era of equality and opportunity. Then, on the night of February 26, 2012, a black seventeen-year-old boy walking to a friend’s home carrying only his cell phone, candy, and a fruit drink, was shot and killed by a neighborhood watch coordinator.

And in July 2013, the trial of Zimmerman for murder captivated the public, as did his eventual acquittal.

In her provocative and landmark book, Suspicion Nation, Lisa Bloom, who covered the trial from gavel to gavel, posits that none of this was a surprise: Our laws, culture, and blind spots created the conditions that led to Trayvon Martin’s death, and made George Zimmerman’s acquittal by far the most likely outcome.

America today holds an unhealthy preoccupation with firearms that has led to the expansion of gun rights to surreal extremes. America now has not only the highest per capita gun ownership rate in the world (almost one gun per American), but the highest rate of gun deaths. Despite the strides America has made, fighting a bloody Civil War to end slavery, eradicating Jim Crow laws, teaching tolerance, and electing an African American president, racial inequality persists throughout our country, in employment, housing, education, the media, and most institutions. And perhaps most destructively of all, racial biases run deep in every level of our criminal justice system. Suspicion Nation captures a court system and a country conflicted and divided over issues of race, violence, and gun legislation.
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