Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Soledad O' Brien's "The Next Big Story"

At first, Soledad O' Brien's book "The Next Big Story" didn't call my attention half as much as the previous book I had read. I ever imagined I wouldn't be able to put this book down and that is exactly what happened. I'm taking The Next Big Story by Soledad O' Brien everywhere I go. I keep it in my purse and start reading it at the doctor's officer, while waiting in line at the bank, or when I have a few minutes before going live, or before going to sleep, which by the way is my favorite time to read. I am a firm believer that reading makes us a more and better informed person and therefore, a better reporter. I am surprised at how much this book, The Next Big Story, has inspired me.I would recommend it to students and starting reporters and maybe to reporters that have lost interest for their jobs.

Soledad O' Brien is a black, Latina journalist. She is a CNN anchor and special correspondent, which I have dreamed of becoming. She also directs documentaries, something that I would love to do. I do relate to her in many levels; obviously, I relate to her professionally because I studied Journalism and have been a news reporter for the past six years. I also relate to her emotionally. Soledad's mom is Cuban and both of my parents are Cubans. In the book, she describes her battle with racism due to the fact that her mom is a black, Cuban lady married to an Australian, white guy, raising their kids in an American small town named Smithtown in the 1970s. I loved how Soledad dealt with the divisiveness and racism by working hard and only harder at sports, school, college and television news reporting. Instead of dwelling on the unfairness of it all, Soledad reserved her time and energy to move forward and succeed. Her words in the book are inspiring. I can't find better words to describe it. I guess inspiring is the best I can come up with. Soledad's immigrant, hard working parents raised six, successful children that all studied at Harvard University. I admire Soledad as much as I admire her parents. I marvel at the way they raised their six kids. I am in awe when reading their magical and disciplined childhood. I am reminded in more ways than just one of the way my mother raised me. I am inspired by their hard work and reminded that working hard pays off.

The book made me laugh when I read this line in which Soledad refers to her five siblings: "We all saw ourselves as unremarkable and uncomplicated. It only became apparent we were different when we stepped outside our home. Not everyone ate rice with every meal, sometimes with guaya jelly and fried plantains" (24).

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