Overnight Code

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What to expect

Overnight Code tells the story of Raye Montague, an ambitious African American woman from segregated Little Rock, Arkansas, who spent a lifetime educating herself, both inside and outside of the classroom, so that she could become the person and professional she aspired to be. Where some saw roadblocks, Montague only saw hurdles that needed to be overcome. Her mindset helped her become the first person to draft a Naval ship design by computer, using a program she worked late nights to debug. She did this as a single mother during the height of the Cold War, all the while imbuing her son with the hard-won wisdom she had accumulated throughout the years.

Equal parts coming-of-age tale, civil rights history, and reflection on the power of education, Overnight Code is a tale about the persistence and perseverance required to forge the life of your dreams when the odds against you seem insurmountable, showing how one woman refused to let other people’s prejudices stand in the way of her success.

Critics Review

  • “A lovingly composed tribute…[that] allows readers to hear Raye’s own words though quotes and memories…Will especially appeal to Black women interested in STEM fields as well as those interested in firsthand perspectives of civil rights.”

    Library Journal
  • “Robin Eller…brings enthusiasm and vocal integrity to the task of showing listeners just who this ‘little girl from Little Rock’ really was…There is a novelistic feel to the narrative that makes Raye seem real and her accomplishments in overcoming social barriers just as important as her computer programming successes. Kevin Kenerly reads a small section by David Montague, Raye’s son.”

  • “A must-read for anyone seeking inspiration to overcome social barriers and to shatter glass ceilings.”

    Carolyn Porter, author of Marcel's Letters: A Font and the Search for One Man's Fate
  • “What an amazing story about an amazing woman!…Montague’s life demonstrates what a determined woman can accomplish even when the deck is doubly stacked against her.”

    Theresa Kaminski, historian and author of Dr. Mary Walker's Civil War
  • “A reminder that even in the toughest of environments, if you give someone a chance, they will excel beyond expectations. It is the lesson, the story, and the life of Raye Montague.”

    Artemesia Stanberry, coauthor of Stealth Reconstruction
  • “The powerful and inspiring story of a woman who refused to be stopped by the dual challenges of racism and sexism in the largely male, largely White world of the early days of computer science.”

    Pamela D. Toler, author of Women Warriors

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