Deacon King Kong

Deacon King Kong

A Novel

eBook - 2020
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"Cracking...Terrific...Deeply felt, beautifully written, and profoundly humane." -The New York Times Book Review cover "Hilarious...A rich and vivid multicultural history." -Time Magazine From James McBride, author of the National Book Award-winning The Good Lord Bird and the bestselling modern classic The Color of Water, one of the most anticipated novels of the year: a wise and witty tale about what happens to the witnesses of a shooting. In September 1969, a fumbling, cranky old church deacon known as Sportcoat shuffles into the courtyard of the Cause Houses housing project in south Brooklyn, pulls a .38 from his pocket, and in front of everybody shoots the project's drug dealer at point-blank range. The reasons for this desperate burst of violence and the consequences that spring from it lie at the heart of Deacon King Kong, James McBride's funny, moving novel and his first since his National Book Award-winning The Good Lord Bird. In Deacon King Kong, McBride brings to vivid life the people affected by the shooting: the victim, the African-American and Latinx residents who witnessed it, the white neighbors, the local cops assigned to investigate, the members of the Five Ends Baptist Church where Sportcoat was deacon, the neighborhood's Italian mobsters, and Sportcoat himself. As the story deepens, it becomes clear that the lives of the characters--caught in the tumultuous swirl of 1960s New York--overlap in unexpected ways. When the truth does emerge, McBride shows us that not all secrets are meant to be hidden, that the best way to grow is to face change without fear, and that the seeds of love lie in hope and compassion. Bringing to these pages both his masterly storytelling skills and his abiding faith in humanity, James McBride has written a novel every bit as involving as The Good Lord Bird and as emotionally honest as The Color of Water. Told with insight and wit, Deacon King Kong demonstrates that love and faith live in all of us.
Publisher: [S.l.]: Penguin Publishing Group, 2020
ISBN: 9780735216747
Characteristics: 384 p
Additional Contributors: cloudLibrary

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t
toodles54
Aug 04, 2020

Poignant, laugh-out-loud hilarious and heartbreaking-and that’s the emotive turn contained on just one page of ‘Deacon King Kong.’ Set at the end of the tumultuous 60’s, ‘Deacon’ gives us the far-ranging story of a community in transition. Folks residing in the Causeway Housing Projects in south Brooklyn don’t have much, don’t expect much and have become a close-knit group that watches with growing wariness the increasing drug activity conducted by Deems, a one-time project kid and promising baseball prospect who chose a different path.
Enter Sportcoat, an elderly and usually intoxicated deacon of Five Ends Baptist Church and the former coach and mentor to Deems, who Sportcoat shoots at point-blank range.
The aftermath of the shooting makes up a story that brings to life an assortment of memorable characters and their struggles in the projects, all taking place in the shadow of NYC’s wealth and success.
‘Deacon King Kong’ is a wonderful story that will fill your heart.

j
JLMason
Jul 15, 2020

Old-fashioned, heart-warming, gently and sometimes LOL humourous - Deacon King Kong is a story about community - how it supports and sustains, how it builds trust, how people of different races and faiths can pull together to help one another, treating each other as human beings. It’s not all positive, but it offers hope. Best book of 2020 so far.

JCLS_Ashland_Kristin Jul 09, 2020

Soooo good. Set in 1969 in New York...this one has a great mosaic of interwoven narratives that all come together at the end. Super funny, but with a serious point to make.

l
LauraMcShaneCLE
Jul 06, 2020

Do yourself a favor and buy the book - as Oprah Winfrey recommends. Support literature by African-American writers. This story resonates with any ethic group. Getting by and trying to do right. Loads of American history and passages that will have you underlining your copy!

r
reedvm
Jun 23, 2020

Pretty good

l
lindemuldercr
Jun 15, 2020

Modern Mrs Darcy

t
tjdickey
May 04, 2020

What a treat to read! Deacon King Kong marries so many elements of the melting pot of American life (and specifically, 20th century New York City life): hope and despair, rage and laughter, substance abuse and drug dealers and depression and new love and redemption, all flowing along in the excellent river of McBride's storytelling ability. His prose shifts color and mood, and even shifts resonance when tuning to the different voices of his Brooklyn characters, African-American, Italian, Latinix, Irish. Every so often, his prose even floods its banks, washing over in riffing run-on breathless explosive rivers of language that will sweep you along in their emotional tide, be that anger at injustice, or just how moo-ass fine is the free Jesus' Cheese that appears in the neighborhood every year.

d
DENNIS HENLEY
Mar 18, 2020

As of March 18, 2020, this may be the best book I've read this year.

James McBride's novel is filled with wonderful characters, laugh-out-loud humor, a twisting and surprising plot, and heartbreaking romance. The prose has style, grace, and lyrical beauty and I've been improved just by the reading of it.

Here's a sample of what's in store for you in Deacon King Kong:

"The sight of her lovely brown face breaking into laughter and focusing tightly on him, as she stood in the dress of azaleas in the sunlight yard of weeds, made him feel light again. In that moment he realized that all the experience of thirty-two years on the NYPD and all the formal police training in the world was useless when the smile of someone you suddenly care about finds the bow that wraps your heart and undoes it.”

How can you not want to read more?

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