Survival Math

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 05 Mar 2019

Member Reviews

The best thing about this book - and the true stories within - is that it is written in the authentic (and learned) voice of the author so this account is written by an educated man laying out the experience of black men (in and out of prison, in and out of the hood, generic life, poverty-and crime-laden neighborhoods) and a few women. There are parts I did not understand / 'get' but I think the good thing is to write books in original words / voices actually spoken.

Thanks to the publisher for the ARC and all the best to the author.
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It's taken me a few days to get to a review, because the book was so heavy for me I still don't know what to say about it other than, "WOW." I thought it was amazing. The structure isn't super easy to navigate, but it is worth your investment.

Recommended for social and cultural scholars, teachers, and anybody who interacts with the public. And recommended for anyone who grew up with hustlers/OGs in the family, especially multiple generations of hustlers.
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Biography or Memoir however you choose to classify it Survival Math by Mitchell S. Jackson is like no other “Memoir” I have read. Jackson’s unique prose styles felt like he was having a conversation with me the reader. Telling his story of growing up black in Portland, Oregon focusing centering on his struggles and generations of his families struggles. Jackson talked about violence, prison, and drugs that took hold of there lives. The history side of his story in Portland, Oregon blew me away, the neglect by government and crime was more of a way of life and survival. Jackson is an exceptional writer and this book is truly phenomenal. I will read any book that Jackson puts out in the Future. Thank you Netgalley & @scribnerbooks for the e-copy of this book. My nonfiction reads have been top notice so far this year! Thank you Thank you!!
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Mitchell Jackson's memoir is so beautiful! It is a powerful memoir that teaches a lot, and I'm so grateful that I got the opportunity to read it
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I really enjoyed this book. Nice history of family. Some good, some bad but family. I enjoyed the author’s writing style. At times it was like watching a movie. That is how well written it is. I am going to look for more from this author. Thanks to Netgalley, the author and the publisher for the arc of this book in return for my honest review. Receiving the book in this manner had no bearing on my review.
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I loved Part One - especially Jackson's chapter on "Composite Dads". I was impressed with Jackson's writing and introspection. I was excited to read more of his thoughts.

Part Two completely lost me. With his references to biblical times and Greek gods and then related that to America and white men and their power over Black men...I had no idea what he was talking about. Is it because I'm stupid and he's way too smart for me? Or his intensity is too much for me? 

But I remembered Part One's promise, so I persevered.

And then in Part Three, I gave up. At 55%. I could no longer handle the vicim mentality that was pervasive on every page. Now referencing Christianity and referring to White men as The Church blatantly turned me off. His escapes with drugs and women - his disregard for women. Though he was remorseful of the way he treated women, I couldn't help but wonder at the double standard that allows him to be remorseful and praised for his past transgressions, yet people like Sherman Alexie are vilified. I don't see how there's a difference. It made me angry and I put the book down for good. 

I did not like this book. If it could have been like Part One, there was potential. As it went on, it was just apparent that this wasn't the book for me.
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Instead of writing to you about his life story, Mitchell S. Jackson’s prose feels like he is having a conversation about his life with the reader. He talks about not only his struggles, but generations of his families struggles with violence, prison, and drugs. It truly is a tale of overcoming your surroundings and bettering oneself as a person.
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This should be REQUIRED reading for every American. Jackson shares his struggles with his readers and forces them to show some empathy and put themselves in his shoes as much as possible. This is a timely book and needs to be read. Race relations would be a lot better if this became required reading.
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Mitchell Jackson brings us into his world his neighborhood his life .This is honestbeye opening account of his life.He writes in a strong lyrical voice a memoir that will stay with you .Highly recommend.#netgalley #survivalmath #netgalley,
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This memoir dives deep into Jackson’s life, particularly his life in crime, but also neighborhood and societal pressures. The writing style hindered my reading of this, however. Initially, I thought it was a collection of essays because the prologue is a long letter and the first chapter was short and in verse.  Also, I didn’t really find the cadence of the conversational style and it made the reading more, rather than less difficult.
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Mitchell Jackson's " Survival Math" brought out more than an autobiography in my opinion.
In the book, he talked a lot of his life of crime, his family's generations to gentrification and settling in parts of the northwestern area of the US that were unknown territory to African Americans at that time. I really enjoyed the way the book was written. Thank you for letting me review.
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The book chronicles the extraordinary journey of writer Mitchell Jackson.  I found it to be a heartfelt account of his life and his family.  Jackson's voice is powerful, the stories are heartbreaking and uplifting.  A beautiful memoir.
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I think there is a good story in here, but the writing style is very conversational and distracting for me. Couldn't make it to the meat of this one.
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