Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His…

Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother (original 1996; edition 1998)

by James McBride

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,210861,185 (3.94)110
Title:Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother
Authors:James McBride
Info:Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (1998), Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:non fiction, memoir, family, slum life, Judaism, racial issues, (2012 reads)

Work details

The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride (1996)

  1. 00
    Off-White: a memoir by Laurie Gunst (Manthepark)
    Manthepark: An interesting coming-of-age story of a Jewish girl’s connections with the African-American and white communities in Richmond, Virginia, and how those connections carried forward into her adult life.

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 110 mentions

English (84)  Dutch (1)  Finnish (1)  All (86)
Showing 1-5 of 84 (next | show all)
This was another book I came across while browsing at Barnes & Noble. The story was so inspiring, difficult and humorous at times too. James McBride is a fabulous story teller. In The Color of Water, McBride goes back and forth between two stories, telling his story growing up as one of eleven children, born to a white mother and black minister father, and his mother's story, growing up as a daughter of an orthodox Jewish rabbi.

I loved the title, The Color of Water. It was the phrase his mother used when McBride asked her what color God was: 'God is no color, he's the color of water.'

Fascinating read and highly recommended! ( )
1 vote homeschoolmimzi | Nov 28, 2016 |
3 in ILL, none in CC. Interestingly, it's variously shelved in the libraries as fiction, non-fiction, and biography....
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 5, 2016 |
interesting and well written, but not particularly enlightening or earthshaking. ( )
  Darth-Heather | May 31, 2016 |
You can feel the love and respect for his mother through the words he chooses to tell her story. A recent facebook question asked what fictional or non fictional family's house would you like to visit. I'd have to say the McBride house. ( )
  SkiKatt68 | Feb 26, 2016 |
In the course of her lifetime, a Jewish woman whose father was an Orthodox rabbi, moves to New York, marries two black men, and bears 12 children, all of whom go on to complete college and in several cases, get advanced degrees. An amazing story of Ruth’s life with an abusive father; a meek, disabled mother, and the prejudice she endured from both blacks and whites, and how she embraced the African-American culture.
  Salsabrarian | Feb 2, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 84 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
I wrote this book for my mother, and her mother, and mothers everywhere.
In memory of Hudis Shilsky, Rev. Andrew D. McBride, and Hunter L. Jordan, Sr.
First words
As a boy, I never knew where my mother was from -- where she was born, who her parents were.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
About a black man who has a white mother and a complex with issues of race, religion, and identity.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 159448192X, Paperback)

Order this book ... and please don't be put off by its pallid subtitle, A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother, which doesn't begin to do justice to the utterly unique and moving story contained within. The Color of Water tells the remarkable story of Ruth McBride Jordan, the two good men she married, and the 12 good children she raised. Jordan, born Rachel Shilsky, a Polish Jew, immigrated to America soon after birth; as an adult she moved to New York City, leaving her family and faith behind in Virginia. Jordan met and married a black man, making her isolation even more profound. The book is a success story, a testament to one woman's true heart, solid values, and indomitable will. Ruth Jordan battled not only racism but also poverty to raise her children and, despite being sorely tested, never wavered. In telling her story--along with her son's--The Color of Water addresses racial identity with compassion, insight, and realism. It is, in a word, inspiring, and you will finish it with unalloyed admiration for a flawed but remarkable individual. And, perhaps, a little more faith in us all.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:27 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

An African American man describes life as the son of a white mother and Black father, reflecting on his mother's contributions to his life and his confusion over his own identity.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 8 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
87 avail.
51 wanted
1 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.94)
0.5 1
1 13
1.5 2
2 42
2.5 14
3 194
3.5 68
4 365
4.5 37
5 303

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 115,177,014 books! | Top bar: Always visible