"Mountain," Baldwin said, "is the book I had to write if I was ever going to write anything else." Go Tell It On The Mountain, first published in 1953, is Baldwin's first major work, a novel that has established itself as an American classic. With lyrical precision, psychological directness, resonating symbolic power, and a rage that is at once unrelenting and compassionate, Baldwin chronicles a fourteen-year-old boy's discovery of the terms of his identity as the stepson of the minister of a storefront Pentecostal church in Harlem one Saturday in March of 1935. Baldwin's rendering of his protagonist's spiritual, sexual, and moral struggle of self-invention opened new possibilities in the American language and in the way Americans understand themselves.
"With vivid imagery, with lavish attention to details, Mr. Baldwin has told his feverish story." -The New York Times
"Brutal, objective and compassionate." -San Francisco Chronicle
"It is written with poetic intensity and great narrative skill." -Harper's
"Strong and powerful." -Commonweal
"A sense of reality and vitality that is truly extraordinary. . . . He knows Harlem, his people, and the language they use." -Chicago Sun-Times
"This is a distinctive book, both realistic and brutal, but a novel of extraordinary sensitivity and poetry." -Chicago Sunday Tribune