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Book Review: Where Tomorrows Aren't Promised- A Memoir Of Survival And Hope. (Carmelo Anthony Story)

Where Tomorrows Aren't Promised was written by Carmelo Anthony (And D. Watkins) and published by Gallery Books in 2021. You can purchase the book on Amazon/Kindle. Visit the author on Facebook and Amazon.

Nothing but net! We get caught up in an athlete's talent, cheering them on, but few of us know of the pain and grief that preceded it.

Carmelo Anthony grew up in Red Hook, Brooklyn and later in West Baltimore, Maryland. The "housing projects", built mostly in the 1930's and 1940's, still stand in many low income urban areas. These brick and brownstone communities have become harbingers of crime, drugs and death and many who find themselves living there are lucky if they can get out alive; some of them not wanting to get out at all. As a young toddler, this was the world that Carmelo lived in and the only view he had of that world was through a side window of his families first floor apartment. There, he would watch the "hoopers and hustlers" play their games, engage in their pursuits and he would dream of being like his older brothers and cousin, who were also products of the same dismal environment. Despite the poor odds that were looming outside of his window, there were plenty of happy family times. Large family gatherings and neighboring friends would stop by to eat and partake in the hospitality that Carmelo's mom provided. As he grew older, Carmelo would watch, learn and play basketball; still looking up to the ones in his circle of friends and family who taught and supported him.

Even as he enjoyed and matured as a young boyhood basketball player, the dangers and the uncertainty all around him pulled him down into a depression but somehow he found his way and continued on. It wasn't just the streets that endangered his well being, the educational system that he was entered into subjected him to emotional abuse by ignoring and excluding him and even at times, exploiting him. Trying desperately to move forward, his struggles and the pain of life continued as he lost loved ones who became untimely victims to the environments around them.

Despite unsurmountable odds, Carmelo, with the advice and support of family and friends succeeded and took his talents to the basketball court of Syracuse University; leading the way to a 2003 national championship and later, onto the NBA where he continued to thrive. He often wonders:

How did a kid who’d had so many hopes, dreams, and expectations beaten out of him by a world of violence, poverty, and racism make it here at all?

This book opens up and expands the view of what young Carmelo saw through his apartment window as a toddler. It reminds us that we can never claim to really know what it's like to live in those conditions. Only someone who has lived it totally understands; but they also know that hope, inspiration and determination can lead to greatness. Nothing but net! I loved it!

I give Where Tomorrows Aren't Promised 4 out of 5 stars.

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