It Wasn't Roaring, It Was Weeping: Interpreting the Language of Our Fathers Without Repeating Their Stories

Written by:
Lisa-Jo Baker
Narrated by:
Lisa-Jo Baker

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
May 2024
8 hours 4 minutes
An honest and lyrical coming-of-age memoir of growing up in South Africa at the height of apartheid, and an invitation to recognize and refuse to repeat the sins of our fathers—from the bestselling author of Never Unfriended

“Heartfelt, emotionally charged reflections . . . [a] bracing memoir.”—Kirkus Review

“Important. Riveting. Unforgettable . . . a profoundly captivating story that can profoundly change your own story.”—Ann Voskamp, New York Times bestselling author of WayMaker

Born White in the heart of Zululand during the racial apartheid, Lisa-Jo Baker longed to write a new future for her children—a longing that set her on a journey to understand where she fit into a story of violence and faith, history and race. Before marriage and motherhood, she came to the United States to study to become a human rights advocate. When she naïvely walked right into America’s own turbulent racial landscape, Baker experienced the kind of painful awakening that is both individual and universal, personal and social. Yet years would go by before she traced this American trauma back to her own South African past.

Baker was a teenager when her mother died of cancer, leaving her with her father. Though they shared a language of faith and justice, she often feared him, unaware that his fierce temper had deep roots in a family’s and a nation’s pain. Decades later, old wounds reopened when she found herself spiraling into a terrifying version of her father, screaming herself hoarse at her son. Only then did Baker realize that to go forward—to refuse to repeat the sins of our fathers—we must first go back.

With a story that stretches from South Africa’s outback to Washington, D.C., It Wasn’t Roaring, It Was Weeping is a courageous look at inherited hurts and prejudices, and a hope-filled example for all who feel lost in life or worried that they’re too off course to make the necessary corrections. Baker’s story shows that it’s never too late to be free.
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Carol R.

Excellent book! So well written that I became part of the story. There were several scenes that were so heartbreaking and disturbing that I cried. Lisa Jo’s story is one that can be related to by many daughters who have difficult relationships with their fathers. The title is so compelling I immediately knew what it meant and had a visceral reaction to it. I appreciate her honesty in her writing and highly recommend this as a beautiful story of hope and healing, and listening to Lisa Jo read it in all of the accents and languages added so much depth to the story.

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