• Cotton Comes to Harlem

  • A Grave Digger & Coffin Ed Novel
  • By: Chester Himes
  • Narrated by: Dion Graham
  • Length: 6 hrs and 57 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (133 ratings)

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Cotton Comes to Harlem  By  cover art

Cotton Comes to Harlem

By: Chester Himes
Narrated by: Dion Graham
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Publisher's Summary

Black flim-flam man Deke O'Hara is no sooner out of Atlanta's state penitentiary than he's back on the streets, working the scam of a lifetime. As sponsor of the Back-to-Africa movement, he's counting on the big Harlem rally to produce a big collection - for his own private charity. But the take ($87,000) is hijacked by white gunmen and hidden in a bale of cotton that suddenly everyone wants to get his hands on.

With Coffin Ed Johnson and Grave Digger Jones on everyone's trail and piecing together the complexity of the scheme, Cotton Comes to Harlem (made into a film in 1970) is one of Himes's hardest-hitting and most entertaining thrillers.

©1965 Chester Himes; copyright renewed 1993 by Lesley Himes (P)2011 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"The greatest find in American crime fiction since Raymond Chandler.... These books have lasting value - as thrillers, as streetwise documentaries, as chapters of black writing at its ribald and unaffected best. On every level they are simply - or rather not so simply, terrific." ( The Sunday Times, London)

What listeners say about Cotton Comes to Harlem

Average Customer Ratings
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Just discovered Audo Books

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Hello everyone! I'll keep this review short and sweet, where were the Audio Books when I was younger?

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

Yes, well I saw the film too and it was pretty close.

Which character – as performed by Dion Graham – was your favorite?

All

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The search for the cotton.

Any additional comments?

Loved It!

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Entertaining and funny!

Would you consider the audio edition of Cotton Comes to Harlem to be better than the print version?

Yes.

What other book might you compare Cotton Comes to Harlem to and why?

The Help. I like books that have the potential to become movies.

Have you listened to any of Dion Graham’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No.

Any additional comments?

The book was fun and fast paced.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Okay

I expectd adventure and I was very disappointed in the slow movingand in my opinion a poor story line. The saving grace was the mention of famous places in Harlem.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Mood

"They had her taken from her cell where she was held ... to the interrogation room in the basement known to the Harlem underworld as the Pigeon's Nest. It was claimed that more pigeons were hatched there than beneath all the eaves in Harlem. It was a soundproof, windowless room with a stool in the center, bolted to the floor and surrounded by floodlights bright enough to make the blackest man transparent But only the overhead light was on when the jailer brought her in. She saw Gravedigger standing beside the stool, waiting for her. The door was closed and locked behind her. She had a sudden feeling of taken from the earth. Then she saw the vague outline of coffin Ed backed against the wall in the shadows. His acid burned face looked like a Mardi Gras mask to scare little children. She shuddered. Grave Digger said 'sit down baby, and tell us how you are.' "

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  • Ladyfilosopher
  • 02-03-21

Hard hitting Mean Streets era crime story ...

...missing from commercial white biased productions.what a film this would make!! listening to this versatile rendition, music melding action with story, felt I was almost there, riding with the action. The tale sidesteps the stereotypical ghetto meme alive until Spike Lee came to town. Drugs are NOt the story, social issues are. Intersectionality show up in various dynamics.

2 people found this helpful