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Winner - Autobiography/Memoir Category

2014 International Book Award

Bronze Winner - Midwest Region Non-Fiction Category

2014 IPPY (Independent Publishers) Award

"A big-hearted, beautifully detailed story, chronicling how one mother and son grew closer amid unspeakable tragedy and the upheaval of a nation.


Coleman's story is an important footnote to American history, one that highlights how the pursuit of justice--even amid tragedy and in the face of evil--can transform lives in profound and powerful ways."


--Dean Bakopoulos,

author of My American Unhappiness



Coleman, reading from SPOKE


When Coleman's mother participated in civil rights demonstrations and sit-ins to end segregation, and then attempted to sell her home in an all white suburb of Oklahoma City to a black doctor, the city fathers had her declared insane.  She lost her home, her children and everything she owned.  For five long years.

SPOKE takes readers from the lunch-counter sit-ins of the early 1960s to the draft-board and FBI office raids later that same decade; from Martin Luther King’s 1963 March on Washington to the 1968 DC Mobilization Against the War; from the nightmarish conditions of mid-century state mental institutions to the soul-less sterility of the federal prison system; from the advent of women's lib to the dawn of the sexual revolution.   

Coleman's experiences, and those of his mother, provide a lens through which to view one of the most tumultuous decades of the twentieth century. Drawing on his memory, his mother’s written reflections, interviews with contemporaries, and newly available documents, SPOKE recalls a recent time in America’s history when sacrifices were required, and sacrifices were made.




© Coleman, 2014  coleman@spokesinthewheel.com