Between the World and Me is a nonfiction autobiographical work by American journalist and author Ta-Nehisi Coates. It takes the form of a letter to his fifteen-year-old son, Samori, in which Coates describes his perceptions of what it is like to live as a Black man in the United States. Between the World and Me won the 2015 National Book Award for Nonfiction. Explore a character analysis of Ta-Nehisi Coates, the plot summary, and important quotes.


Read our detailed part-by-part Summary & Analysis or the Full Book Summary of Between the World and Me.


See a complete list of the characters in Between the World and Me and in-depth analyses of Ta-Nehisi Coates, Samori Coates, Dr. Mable Jones, and Kenyatta Matthews.

Literary Devices

Here is where you will find analysis of the major themes, motifs, and symbols in Between the World and Me. as well as a listing of its genre, tone, and other literary devices.


Find the quotes you need to support your essay, or refresh your memory of the book by reading these key quotes.

Quick Quizzes

Test your knowledge of Between the World and Me with these quiz questions.

Deeper Study

Enhance your understanding of Between the World and Me by reading background about Ta-Nehisi Coates and the work as well as mini essays about “the Struggle,” Coates’s resentment of the school system as a child, and the role of fear in Coates’s life.