Boston Boy: Growing Up with Jazz and Other Rebellious Passions

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Paul Dry Books, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 212 pages

Boston Boy is Nat Hentoff's memoir of growing up in the Roxbury section of Boston in the 1930s and 1940s. He grapples with Judaism and anti-Semitism. He develops a passion for outspoken journalism and First Amendment freedom of speech. And he discovers his love of jazz music as he follows, and is befriended by, the great jazz musicians of the day, including Duke Ellington and Lester Young among others.

"This memoir of [Hentoff's] youth should be appreciated not only by adults who grew up through the fires of their own youthful rebellion, but by those restless young people who are now bringing their own views and questions to the world they are inheriting. They could learn from this example that rebels can be gentle as well as enraged and compassionate in their commitment." -- New York Times Book Review

"Nat Hentoff knows jazz. And it comes alive in this wonderful, touching memoir." -- Ken Burns, creator of the PBS series Jazz

"[A] charmingly bittersweet memoir." -- The Boston Globe

"This is a touching book about a painful, wonderful time in Boston...I loved it." -- Anthony Lewis

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BOSTON BOY: Growing Up With Jazz And Other Rebellious Passions

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Jazz critic and social writer Hentoff recalls his early years and formative influences in this stream-of-consciousness memoir. In his boyhood, the charmingly corrupt Mayor James Michael Curley ruled ... Read full review

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About the author (2001)

Nat Hentoff is a long-time civil rights commentator and a prolific author and journalist whose weekly columns are published in The Village Voice and The Washington Times. He's worked as a columnist for the Washington Post and as a reporter for The New Yorker.

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