In the Shadow of Statues by Mitch Landrieu

In the Shadow of Statues

"An extraordinarily powerful journey that is both political and personal...An important book for everyone in America to read." --Walter Isaacson, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Leonardo Da Vinci and Steve Jobs The New Orleans mayor who removed the Confederate statues confronts the racism that shapes us and argues for white America to reckon with its past. A passionate, personal, urgent book from the man who sparked a national debate."The...

Details In the Shadow of Statues

TitleIn the Shadow of Statues
Release DateMar 20th, 2018
GenreNonfiction, History, Politics, Race, Autobiography, Memoir, Biography

Reviews In the Shadow of Statues

  • Shavon
    People are somehow reading this history book and getting distracted by the fact that the author is a politician. But let's not be so cynical that we overlook the issue of race solely because someone in the public square is raising it. A white politician is an ideal messenger for an historical account of race relations in the Deep South and the rest of the U.S. This is a book review of the content of Mayor Landrieu's message and the manner of his ...
  • Jill Meyer
    I'm trying to read up on possible Democratic candidates for the 2020 presidential race. Mitch Landrieu, currently mayor of New Orleans and formerly Lt Governor of Louisiana, has been mentioned as a dark horse, lurking on the edges of the political landscape. Landrieu's new book, "In the Shadow of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History", is a good look at three major issues that he has handled in his time in the two major offices he has hel...
  • Stuart Rodriguez
    There’s a lot to like about this book. Mitch Landrieu, mayor of New Orleans, gives, I think, an honest and down-to-earth account of his life, from his youth growing up in New Orleans, to his early tangles in state legislature with neo-Nazi David Duke, to Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, and finally, to the removal of the four Confederate monuments from New Orleans in 2017. I appreciated that Landrieu’s recollections felt clear-eyed, and h...
  • Sean Chick
    A brief book commissioned by a mayor (there is no way he wrote this) who was vaulted to moderate political stardom for defeating inanimate objects. The truth is under Landrieu New Orleans has rapidly gentrified, with its black population declining and forced to the West Bank. The culture is actively diluted as residents are forced out by AirBNB. I live across from the Faubourg Treme, birthplace of Jazz and America's oldest integrated neighborhood...
  • Jeri Rowe
    I grew up in the cradle of the Civil War, a city where Fort Sumter is part of who we are -- and always will be. I'm from Charleston., S.C. Do love that city with all its flaws. When I was young, my family attended a church downtown that had a gym right across from the slave market. I always walked through that place because it was a like a maze for me. It stretched for a few blocks, had a concrete floor, a low roof and oppressively hot in the sum...
  • Chris
    One can’t help but wonder if this book will be a launching pad to the presidency as Obama’s “Dreams of My Father” was. It’s sincere and passionate. Mitch comes off as the next Bill Clinton but without the sleaze. He tells his life story as well as the trauma of Hurricane Katrina. If you read the acknowledgments at the end of the book you might question how much of the book he actually wrote with thanks to speech writers and journalists....
  • Marjorie
    This book was too much like a political campaign ad for my taste.
  • Susan Iannaccone
    Perfect Extremely well written, scholarly and with heart. Love this book about a city I love. Couldn’t have come at a better time.
  • Scott Martin
    This book is memoir from the mayor of New Orleans and his role in taking down a series of statues honoring Confederate figures in the city and igniting a controversy that sparked intensive debate across the nation. The work starts as an autobiography of a Louisiana politician, whose experience with race started early on, as his father was mayor of New Orleans at the height of the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. As he moves through life, Landr...
  • Cateline
    The evolution of Mr. Landrieu’s thoughts on the statues and their cumulative effect on society is really a journey of discovery. It is one that all Americans would profit from, I believe. Being a white Southerner of a certain age myself, I’d not given much thought to the presence of the Civil War statues, or their reason(s) for being. I merely thought of them as having been there all my life, and took their presence for granted. I didn’t re...
  • Linda
    It's important to understand WHY we think and feel the way we do. Current events led me to reexamine my own beliefs and to then do a 180 turn regarding the Confederacy and the Civil War. My great great grandfather fought for the South, and I was raised to be proud of him and to honor Lee, Stonewall, Beauregard, etc. I now know that he and they were on the wrong side of history and they were wrong. Landrieu helped me come to terms with several iss...
  • Jane
    Things I learned and understand better because of this book:1. Schools in southern states teach that the "war between the states" was fought for state's rights and had nothing to do with slavery. I have friends from the south who whole-heartedly believe this and will not listen to any discussion about the Civil War being about slavery. I've always been so confused about that; now I know why.2. The cult of the Lost Cause. This is an organization s...
  • Tom
    The story of how Mitch Landrieu the mayor of New Orleans came to realization and conviction that four Civil War monuments commemorating the Confederacy should be taken down. The evolution to this end came from family experiences ,the perspectives of African American friends, a Jesuit education and finally a reexamination of History. What became for him the right move caused a firestorm as racism reared it's ugly head. An enlightening look at how ...
  • Duncan
    Mitch Landrieu, potentially a rising Democratic star, has taken his first real step toward a national run. This book, while commenting on his battle with New Orleans’ Confederate statues really shines as a look at his form of governing. Mr. Landrieu provides a hopeful message for all Americans and a positive way to look at how local and federal government can assist the most vulnerable around our great nation. While choppy and disconnected at t...
  • Russell
    I couldn't read this book fast enough. As a southerner, I related on so many levels to this book. I think folks need to come to terms that the South was WRONG. We must acknowledge it, before we can move forward in healing the divisions in our country. I even tweeted Mitch Landrieu and gave him my support/vote for a presidential run in 2020. I think he would do an awesome job. If he governed the U.S. as he did New Orleans, we would all be better o...
  • Maria
    Landrieu, resident of New Orleans, Catholic, Democrat, and politician, weaves the story of his life and his city. Touching on the War on Poverty, David Duke, Hurricane Katrina, and the removal of Lost Cause statues, Landrieu reflects on what New Orleans is, was and could be. Why I started this book: I was eager to read about the statues being taken down... and while Landrieu teases it in the beginning, he saves it for his grand finale.Why I finis...
  • Jason Park
    An honorable memoir in many ways that still fails in its execution. My full review:
  • John Hammontree
    The South could use more leaders like Mitch Landrieu.
  • Shevon Quijano
    4.5 Stars In The Shadow of Statues was part memoir and part history of New Orleans. It opened my eyes to the shadow that slavery still has over the people of Louisiana and other areas of the south. Having grown up in a time and physical location that did not suffer so much from our country’s history of slavery, it’s hard to imagine that places still exist where overt and direct racism are a normal part of the culture. Prior to reading this my...
  • Christian
    What an inspiring book written in a very conversational, even avuncular tone!The first third of the book is Mr. Landrieu recollecting his upbringing that emphasized value for all people, the middle section details his challenges in contributing to deal with Hurricane Katrina and rebuilding New Orleans and the last part is about him spearheading a movement to take down American Civil War statues that were out of place and out of time. I greatly re...
  • Bookworm
    In the ongoing news cycle about removing statues that commemorate Confederate Civil War figures, we get a memoir from Mitch Landrieu, the now former mayor of New Orleans to how he got to this point and his role in getting them removed. We begin and end the book with book ends about the process of the statue removal and in between we get his biography and political career.I was disappointed. Don't quite remember how this caught my eye but like oth...
  • Jen
    Reading this it's pretty clear that Landrieu is running for President. He lays out a bunch of issues, like climate change, governmental spending, gun violence, and most specifically, and overarching all of it, race. These are all issues that a good presidential candidate in the US should be able to struggle with and address. All of that aside, this is a great, quick read that doesn't beat you over the head with anything, but lays out a well reaso...
  • Ernest Farmer
    This is one of the most encouraging books I have read! The mayor's honesty and commitment to justice and equality as a public servant is not only refreshing, but it is inspiring. The Trump administration , Republican Congress and Senate are a shameful disgrace by comparison. Mitch Landrieu for president 2020! Ernest Farmer.e te Awesome and courageous , a must read for K = 12History Thank you mayor for your courage and actions E, farmer
  • Dennis Cooper
    I discovered this on Obama’s 2018 summer reading list, and decided to read it because I was feeling nostalgic about when we had a President who read books. This book was largely autobiographical, but also included many interesting historical, social and political insights. It was a quick read, and gave me a shot of hope in these troubled times.
  • Shannon
    Very interesting information in this book! I learned more about the (troubling) history of the confederate monuments. Interesting history about New Orleans in general including information about Hurricane Katrina that was new to me. All in all, I'm glad I read this
  • Chinook
    While that contained a lot more history of Mitch Landrieu and his career than I expected, it was informative and perhaps the last few chapters about taking down the statues wouldn’t have been so moving if there hadn’t been some background set. I will never understand the Americans who want to revere the Confederates. They lost and rightly so. They were people who fought for a horrible cause. Let’s tear them all down.
  • Tina Panik
    This isn’t solely about Confederate statues—it’s about race, class, and the intersection of the history we think we know with its actual veracity. Landrieu contextualizes Hurricane Katrina, David Duke, and the Lost Cause to create a better understanding of modern America.
  • Belinda
    A book for everyone in America to read. Very important. So glad that I read it.
  • Lit Folio
    It's hard for me not to have issues with Landrieu's book--spawned most likely out of the attention he received via The New York Times last spring after these statues were taken down. I know about New Orleans culture because I had spent a good many years living there--studying and then teaching and though there are truths here, it is all slanted to fit this polemic on the wrongs of the Civil War and its implication of pro-slavery. The Civil War is...
  • Chris
    This is a wonderful book. It helped me think about growing up in Louisiana very differently.