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Publisher's Summary

This program is read by Black Panther star, Chadwick Boseman

"Baby, the first thing I need to know from you is, do you believe I killed my father?"

So begins Upstate, a powerful story told through letters between 17-year-old Antonio and his 16-year-old girlfriend, Natasha, set in the 1990's in New York. 

Antonio and Natasha's world is turned upside down, and their young love is put to the test, when Antonio finds himself in jail, accused of a shocking crime. Antonio fights to stay alive on the inside, while on the outside, Natasha faces choices that will change her life. Over the course of a decade, they share a desperate correspondence. Often, they have only each other to turn to as life takes them down separate paths and leaves them wondering if they will ever find their way back together.

Startling, real, and filled with raw emotion, Upstate is an unforgettable coming-of-age story with a message of undeniable hope. Brilliant and profoundly felt, it is destined to speak to a new generation of listeners. 

©2005 Kalisha Buckhanon (P)2005 Audio Renaissance, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers, LLC

Critic Reviews

 

  • 2006 Alex Award Winner
  • 2005 Audie Award Winner, Literary Fiction

"A moving, uplifting story of love and hope in the face of adversity." (Publishers Weekly)

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What listeners say about Upstate

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Book. Different Delivery, and Enjoyable

Great Book. Unusual style delivery, but enjoyable once it gets going. I realy enjoyed this book, and the letter method used for delivery. As the dates of each letter are given, it adds perspective to the setting/atmosphere.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

strange but good

I started this book and was upset I got it. The format is strange at first, but it grows on you. It is two teenagers writing letters to one another and it follows them through growing up under some tough circumstances. It grows on you, the story grabs you, and after this, you will like it. It is a good book.

6 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

RIP Chadwick Boseman

While I had no idea this book existed something made me want to search audible for Chadwick after his passing. I have enjoyed his television productions but it was so refreshing to be able to find some work he’d done on audible. He did a great job really bring out the age of the main character as well as emphasizing his growth along the way, without needing to explain it. I’m so grateful to have a little piece of him within audible for the foreseeable future. Well written book as well. It helped me to see a different perspective on the value of human life. How whenever a life is taken someone has to pay, even if it was self defense. It just clicked for me and I definitely need to take a bit more responsibility for some of my actions. Just because we do things ..that we may not be proud of or were t apart of the plan, doesn’t mean we aren’t still in control of our lives.

Bravo 🙏🏽

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I didn't want it to end. I loved it

I didn't want it to end. I loved it couldn't put it down, I loved the narration and wish there was more. 10 STARS

2 people found this helpful

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Get the tissues out

This is a great book. I was riveted. Listened to it in 2 days. The narrators are excellent. The story is told in letters to each other (male & female main characters mainly). It spans from 1990 - 1999 but doesn't drag at all, has very good momentum. I was very emotional listening to it, I had tears for the last 3 or 4 hours intermittent w/ some laughter. This could be for adults and high school or older. I highly recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Different

I enjoyed this book told from letters written back and forth over many years. The characters are full bodied and interesting. A different read and a story you have not read 100 times before.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Branching out

I titled my review as "branching out" because this is not the type of book I would normally even consider reading or listening to.

I really enjoyed the experience. The emotions and facts that were communicated with this heart wrenching story were amazing.

It helps you appreciate what life is like for those raised in Harlem and provided with few breaks in life. The graphic details of prison life were as real to life as I have read in factual accounts previously (non-fiction).

Narrator did an excellent job....depicting the emotions of the characters was done superbly and made you feel like it was really happening right now.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Upstate

I enjoyed this book. At first, it seems simple but as the story and characters develop through the years, an amazingly tender and complex story unravels.

1 person found this helpful

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Captivating!

A story of parallel lives from two different people in the form of letters to one another. I could not stop listening.

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Good!!

Beautiful, sad, wonderful. This book was well written and captivating. The ending was sad but realistic.

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  • Marnie
  • 04-20-19

Listen to this. You won’t regret it.

I’ve never had such an emotional reaction to any book. And I’ve read some good ones. I’m sitting here with tears streaming down my face right now. It was that powerful. A good friend told me to read this. She had borrowed it from a library in Kempsey, NSW many years ago. I couldn’t find a copy of it anywhere, not even as an ebook - I’m kinda glad now because the Audible version is incredible. The performances were spot on and there was so much heart in the story itself. Not to be missed.