A kckout. A compelling, heartwrenching story of love and leadership--heart and hope. -M.E. Dozier, Teacher/Coach Brevard County Public Schools When Morning Comes is an urban educational tale based upon the personal and professional experiences of Darryl Gilliam. A compelling, inspiring, and sometimes troubling account of Gilliam's experiences as a principal of an inner city high school - Westside Senior High, and as a boy growing up in Freedom First, the story takes place in the heart of one of the nation's most impoverished, socially fragmented, and potentially violent communities. For Gilliam and many young Black males growing up in Freedom First, life was more likely to get worse before it got better as many avoided spiraling into an existence that hovered somewhere above prison, at best, and death on the mean streets, at worst. Between it all, education-along with God's grace and mercy-often proved to be the deciding factor. Freedom First is a community where people live and struggle with poverty and incessant danger created by street gangs and hustlers, prostitution, drug lords, drive-by shootings, murders, and suicides. Yet, it is a place in which a spirit of hope can enable its residents to rise above the countless ills and vices that threaten to undermine education and destroy an entire generation of poor and mirity youth. Armed with his experiences growing up in the same community, Gilliam is w charged with leading and inspiring a new generation of young people as the principal of the community's flagship high school-recognized as its last beacon of hope. When Morning Comes shares Gilliam's professional story and personal reflections on growing up in which a person'slife eventually amounts to the choices they make. Having traveled a difficult and steep road full of tribulations-toward transformation and triumphs-Gallon, through the life of Gilliam, provides a reflective and powerful commentary on the current state of education in urban America. He also encourages educators to teach and inspire a new generation of youth about the possibilities of life and how to embrace an education and maintain faith in God and in themselves-an embrace that ultimately began his own journey toward redemption and salvation. Gallon boldly tackles the challenges confronting urban education, as well as the myriad of social injustices of people who live daily on the margins of society including politics, poverty, and racism. Despite these challenges, the story provides many uplifting experiences and moments of sheer joy, optimism, and triumphs, and promotes education and community as the building blocks toward one's dreams and life's work. When Morning Comes is inspirational, powerful, and riveting all the way through. As a journey of truth, though entertaining, it is t an easy ride. Gallon, in a creative, intelligent, and gritty manner, provides an intricate look at a place that very few choose to go, and a discussion on issues that even fewer care to kw or talk about. He also takes you deep inside the heart, mind, and realities of an urban school principal, as well as that of a man grappling with his own journey toward redemption and the dynamics surrounding the senseless and violent loss of life of many of his childhood friends. Gilliam's personal struggle and reflection occurs while serving witness to similar loss of lives among his students-which are too many toname-in the same community nearly two decades later. When Morning Comes provides a much needed epiphany-one that is wrought with lessons on life and leadership, but most important, on the struggle, strength, and salvation existing in urban America.