Cinders, Inner-city


Pub Date: May 2016

Author: Cindy Brown Austin

Cinders, Inner-CityWhen the horrific Newtown murders of twenty elementary school-aged children occurred in Connecticut in 2012, shock reverberated around the world. But in Connecticut’s poorest cities, like Hartford, where Cindy Brown Austin was born and raised, the untimely murder of inner-city urban youth had been occurring for years.

In the tradition of Claude Brown’s Manchild in the Promised Land, and Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes, Cinders is a searing coming-of-age memoir about the struggles of urban children being locked out of the American dream.

An Apostolic minister and former columnist for the Hartford Courant, Cindy has been profiled by the New York Times and published by Readers Digest and Essence magazines. A recipient fellow of the Connecticut Commission on the Arts, and a finalist in Ebony Magazine’s annual fiction writing contest, she is also the author of By the Rivers of Babylon—her debut novel, which was published in 2007 by Strebor/Simon & Schuster.

Cindy’s writings are her way of documenting how violence and injustice impact urban children.


“If there is any justice beneath the moon, one hopes that this blistering memoir will not only shine a light on Cindy Brown Austin (who was once the subject of a New York Times feature), but also lure readers to her 2007 debut novel, appropriately titled By the Rivers of Babylon. As a writer and as a witness, she is luminous.”

—M. J. Moore, Neworld Review