Uphill: A Memoir (Hardcover)
An empowering, unabashedly bold memoir by the Atlantic journalist and former ESPN SportsCenter coanchor about overcoming a legacy of pain and forging a new path, no matter how uphill life’s battles might be.
Jemele Hill’s world came crashing down when she called President Trump a “white supremacist”; the White House wanted her fired from ESPN, and she was deluged with death threats. But Hill had faced tougher adversaries growing up in Detroit than a tweeting president. Beneath the exterior of one of the most recognizable journalists in America was a need—a calling—to break her family’s cycle of intergenerational trauma.
Born in the middle of a lively routine Friday night Monopoly game to a teen mother and a heroin-addicted father, Hill constantly adjusted to the harsh realities of not only her own childhood but the inherited generational pain of her mother and grandmother. Her escape was writing.
Hill’s mother was less than impressed with the brassy and bold free expression of her diary, but Hill never stopped discovering and amplifying her voice. Through hard work and a constant willingness to learn, Hill rose from newspaper reporter to columnist to new heights as the coanchor for ESPN’s revered SportsCenter. Soon, she earned respect and support for her fearless opinions and unshakable confidence, as well as a reputation as a trusted journalist who speaks her mind with truth and conviction.
In Jemele Hill’s journey Uphill, she shares the whole story of her work, the women of her family, and her complicated relationship with God in an unapologetic, character-rich, and eloquent memoir.
"Jemele Hill's commitment to truth telling is unparalleled. Whether she is exposing white supremacy or being radically transparent about her own history, Jemele's resolve remains steadfast. She makes you want to lean in and listen, but more importantly, she encourages us all to use our voices to tell necessary, hard truths."
—Gabrielle Union, New York Times bestselling author of We're Going to Need More Wine and You Got Anything Stronger?
"Jemele Hill is an undeniable force. Her fearlessness has helped her break countless glass ceilings in her career, making her a stalwart example of possibility. She has consistently used her platform to be a voice for the voiceless, for which I have so much admiration. It’s an honor to know her and call her friend."
—Sunny Hostin, Emmy Award-winning journalist, cohost of ABC’s “The View” and New York Times bestselling author of Summer on the Bluffs
“Jemele Hill's fearless reporting and advocacy for the truth are the central elements of a good journalist. But she takes it all one step further by championing new voices, and new perspectives, by making sure no one is forgotten. She takes risks, looks forward and backward, and never stops growing and pushing ahead.”
—Soledad O'Brien, CEO, award-winning journalist and producer, and philanthropist
"Those who cherish freedom of speech, even when it makes the powerful uncomfortable, will applaud Jemele's fearless words and actions."
—Michael Eric Dyson, New York Times bestselling author of Long Time Coming
"Hill is relentless but fair, and she is equally comfortable parsing out instances of institutional racism and admitting to her own mistakes. She balances humor, vulnerability, and passion, creating a text that is both exciting and emotionally satisfying."
—Kirkus (starred review)
“I’ve long admired Jemele's firm view of who she is and what she stands for, and I knew that when she was ready to tell her story in full, the world would need to hear it. Uphill is the inspirational, no-holds-barred account of her life and career we’ve been waiting for—a fierce meditation on resilience and speaking the truth, even when it can cost you. Riveting and bold, Uphill is pure Jemele, through and through.”
—Tamron Hall, Emmy Award-winning TV host and journalist, and author of As the Wicked Watch
“The world has come to know Jemele for her unflinching honesty and transparency, this memoir is no different. Her foray into the challenges and triumphs that shaped her into the public figure we know and love today will endear loyal fans and open doors to new ones—and it will surely inspire all of its readers.”
—Tarana Burke, New York Times bestselling author of You Are Your Best Thing and Unbound, and founder of the "me too." Movement