• Jaime

The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother's Life in the Detroit Numbers, Bridgett M. Davis

Updated: Mar 19, 2019

Set against the backdrop of Detroit in the 1960's and 1970's, the story of the life of a one-of-a-kind matriarch whose business in the Numbers made her daughter's dreams come true.

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The World According to Fannie Davis is a compelling examination of a family who migrated to Detroit to raise itself out of poverty. In this story, Fannie Davis is the matriarch who is introduced to us by her daughter, Bridgett M. Davis. Not only does Bridgett give us an account on her mother, but she also provides her perspective on her family life and in great detail write about her mother, her mother's business and the extraordinary sacrifices she makes for her family.

One fact that was never lost on me while reading is that Fannie Davis was a fascinating woman. The way Bridgett Davis wrote about her mom and showcased her story in a vulnerable, compelling way really made the read a memorable, unforgettable story. Bridgett Davis wrote about her coming of age story with such vulnerability. She never shied away from admitting any faults, indecision and doubts.

The story never waned for me and I loved how she incorporated personal stories from her childhood and onward weaved in with history, background and facts. One of my favorite books of all times is Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson. Without giving away too much of the story, Fannie Davis' story is connected to the Great Migration. Bridgett mentions that her mom migrates to Detroit for a better life and that sort of starts her journey toward a better life than the family had in the Jim Crow South. Finding out this and having read Warmth of Other Suns really gave the story a deeper meaning. Although you do not need a prerequisite to appreciate this book, I highly recommend reading Warmth of Other Suns as well!

This book was so moving and compelling. There is so much history that Bridgett gives us in this book. Not only her family history, but she also incorporated the history of the Numbers and Detroit which I learned so much and appreciated. If you like moving stories about families, like or love history then pick up this book and read it. This memoir/autobiography struck a chord in my heart. It is a story I will never forget.

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