• Five Days

  • The Fiery Reckoning of an American City
  • By: Wes Moore, Erica L. Green
  • Narrated by: Wes Moore
  • Length: 7 hrs and 3 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (89 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

“An illuminating portrait of Baltimore in the aftermath of the April 2015 death of Freddie Gray.... Readers will be enthralled by this propulsive account.” (Publishers Weekly)

Longlisted for the Porchlight Business Book Award

Named One of the Best Books of the Year by Library Journal

From the New York Times best-selling author of The Other Wes Moore, a kaleidoscopic account of five days in the life of a city on the edge, told through eight characters on the front lines of the uprising that overtook Baltimore and riveted the world.

When Freddie Gray was arrested for possessing an "illegal knife" in April 2015, he was, by eyewitness accounts that video evidence later confirmed, treated "roughly" as police loaded him into a vehicle. By the end of his trip in the police van, Gray was in a coma from which he would never recover. 

In the wake of a long history of police abuse in Baltimore, this killing felt like the final straw - it led to a week of protests, then five days described alternately as a riot or an uprising that set the entire city on edge and caught the nation's attention.

Wes Moore is a Rhodes Scholar, best-selling author, decorated combat veteran, former White House fellow, and CEO of Robin Hood, one of the largest anti-poverty nonprofits in the nation. While attending Gray’s funeral, he saw every stratum of the city come together: grieving mothers, members of the city’s wealthy elite, activists, and the long-suffering citizens of Baltimore - all looking to comfort one another, but also looking for answers. He knew that when they left the church, these factions would spread out to their own corners, but that the answers they were all looking for could be found only in the city as a whole. 

Moore - along with journalist Erica Green - tells the story of the Baltimore uprising both through his own observations and through the eyes of other Baltimoreans: Partee, a conflicted Black captain of the Baltimore Police Department; Jenny, a young White public defender who’s drawn into the violent center of the uprising herself; Tawanda, a young Black woman who’d spent a lonely year protesting the killing of her own brother by police; and John Angelos, scion of the city’s most powerful family and executive vice president of the Baltimore Orioles, who had to make choices of conscience he’d never before confronted. 

Each shifting point of view contributes to an engrossing, cacophonous account of one of the most consequential moments in our recent history, which is also an essential cri de coeur about the deeper causes of the violence and the small seeds of hope planted in its aftermath.

©2020 Wes Moore (P)2020 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Moore captures the fear, anger, uncertainty, and hope of locals who saw their city fall apart and struggle to come back together.... Moore provides important context in the history of Baltimore’s racial and income inequality and the emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement. Readers will be enthralled by this propulsive account.” (Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about Five Days

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  • Overall
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Great book

Really liked the style of the book. The author was able to successfully weave the tales of several perspectives, giving each an opportunity to develope and be understood.

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A monotonous and maddening ode to victimhood.

This is more than introduction into liberal propaganda. I waded through it looking for any rational conclusions or glimpses of reality. I found none.

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Excellent Book

Former Baltimore resident here- I loved the book, brought me to tears. Such great varying stories that gave so much insight into that time. I was just graduating college at the time and this was helpful to allow me to look back and understand better the events that happened.

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Great information!

very compassionate breakdown of the Freddie Gray Story and the Baltimore struggle with race relations.

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why does everyone narrate their own book?

lately it seems everyone has to narrate their own book. I believe God blesses people with talents but no one is good at EVERYTHING. I'm sure I'd like this book if narration was better. Also, it was very bias there were parts of this story I felt could have been presented as facts rather then the liberal perspective. people who already subscribe to the mentality in this book will like it but as someone more conservative i wanted a more factual account of the events not a "black people are victims cops are racist" book. these books that claim racism is so prevalent in America never address stories like Tony Timpa's. he was white and killed by police and unlike freddie gray and George floyd, his family didn't get a dime or prosecution. what's the explanation? I guess I'm just the one african american so tired of these complaints. from Maryland so wanted to hear about riots didn't want to hear about how black ppl have it so much harder then white people