Our Man in the Dark

( 7 )

Overview

In his stunning noir debut, Rashad Harrison shines a provocative light on the months leading up to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

When the FBI approaches John Estem, a bookkeeper for Dr. King’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), they offer him a stipend to work as an informant. But they also issue a warning: they know he stole ten thousand dollars from the organization.

Estem is told he is performing his American...

See more details below
Hardcover
$19.53
BN.com price
(Save 21%)$25.00 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (40) from $1.99   
  • New (13) from $1.99   
  • Used (27) from $1.99   
Our Man in the Dark: A Novel

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.93
BN.com price

Overview

In his stunning noir debut, Rashad Harrison shines a provocative light on the months leading up to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

When the FBI approaches John Estem, a bookkeeper for Dr. King’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), they offer him a stipend to work as an informant. But they also issue a warning: they know he stole ten thousand dollars from the organization.

Estem is told he is performing his American duty, protecting the SCLC from communist infiltration. Once the FBI discovers evidence of King’s sexual infidelities, however, they set out to undermine his credibility as a moral leader and bring down the movement. Our Man in the Dark is a timely novel that comes on the heels of numerous recent revelations about informants within black movement organizations. With historical facts at the core of his writing, Harrison uses real life to create a poignant, page-turning drama.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Harrison’s debut fuses fascinating history with a repellent protagonist and an implausible pulp plot. In 1964, John Estem is a bookkeeper at Martin Luther King Jr.’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference. With his leg in a brace from surviving polio, an unhealthy fixation on a nightclub singer, and a penchant for prostitutes, Estem’s civil rights involvement is the only thing in his life that isn’t lonely or fractured. When his idea for a march is scuttled, Estem embezzles ,000 from the organization to fund the march himself, but squanders most of the money on clothes, women, and a Cadillac. In his compromised state, Estem is an easy mark for Mathis and Strobe, FBI agents who recruit him to inform on purported Communist infiltration of the SCLC. Estem takes a loan from “Count,” an underworld nightclub owner and the possessive boyfriend of a singer Estem pines for, allowing Estem to maintain his duplicities for a time. But it soon becomes clear that the FBI wants to use information about Dr. King’s personal life to discredit the civil rights movement, information Count is after as well for his own blackmail purposes, Estem turns the tables on his handlers. Harrison shows promise in his evocation of time and place, but Estem’s transformation from spineless embezzler to ruthless, reckless survivor who can outwit the FBI is less successful. He comes across as unpleasant and unbalanced, and given that he never seems more than minutes ahead of being exposed, his gutsy maneuvering late in the book seems especially unlikely. (Nov.)
From the Publisher
“Draws the reader in like metal shavings to a magnet.” —New York Journal of Books

“An entertaining work of historical fiction with a touch of the noir; readers who enjoyed Don Delilo’s Libra will appreciate.” —LIBRARY JOURNAL, REVIEW (9/23)

“The dark conclusion descends into powerful moral ambivalence about love, loyalty and family.” — KIRKUS REVIEWS, REVIEW (10/15)

“Harrison’s debut mystery offers a fascinating setting for his intriguing mix of fact and fiction.”— BOOKLIST, REVIEW (10/1)

“Absolutely great. I truly enjoyed every bit of it. The plot, the boldness of the intent, and the wonderful, wonderful writing. The characters were so true and real and new to the page. I’ll never forget any of them. I’m a big fan of this book and of this writer!”— Pearl Cleage, author of Just Wanna Testify

"Our Man in the Dark is smart, snappy and fascinating. As the child of civil rights activists, I applaud Rashad Harrison's wonderfully written debut and his examination of how an ordinary man ended up on the wrong side of history." —Tananarive Due, author of My Soul to Take and Freedom in the Family: A Mother-Daughter Memoir of the Fight for Civil Rights

"Our Man in the Dark is an amazing story, amazingly told. Intrigue and sadness, race and Government, Dr. King and the FBI, foibles and loyalties — this is an ambitious novel that wraps its powerful arms around what it means to be an American. Bold, rhapsodic, and daring, Rashad Harrison has written a morally-engaged masterpiece."

–Darin Strauss author of Chang & Eng, The Real McCoy, and the National Book Critics Circle Award winning memoir Half a Life

“Rashad Harrison is one of the finest young writers I’ve come across. Our Man in the Dark, is gripping, filled with historical detail that puts the reader smack in the middle of the dark days of the fight for civil rights in the ’60s. His memorable characters, most of them morally challenged, pop off the page and his tale of intrigue and betrayal will keep you reading, always wanting more.”

— Charles Salzberg, New York Times Book Review and Esquire contributor, and author of Swann’s Last Song

“What a great voice [Rashad Harrison] is employing here…utterly assured, smart, witty, and incisive…the writing is strong and clear and dead on. What an invention John Estem is as a character….Most impressive is Estem’s deadpan, quietly understated narrative voice throughout…a cool, low tone that is extremely compelling…. He unfurls one revelation after another—about himself, King, the SCLC—as if his store of them is boundless, each more outrageous (and natural sounding) than the last. What an amazing story…and what an incredible amount of inventive energy [Harrison] is displaying. It’s brave and brilliant to bring Dr. King into the story as both icon and man—especially the latter—and to do it with such verve and ease.”

— Nicholas Christopher, author of The Bestiary, Veronica, and Somewhere in the Night

"[Harrison] is an excellent writer. His prose is...strong and assured and elegant and also quite beautiful when it needs to be. His stories are mysterious and powerful."

–Jonathan Ames, author of The Extra Man, and creator of the HBO series Bored to Death

Library Journal
Historical fiction is a genre that feels the constraint of realism, forcing the author to represent an alternate reality by developing the unheard thoughts of individual characters without straying too far from fact. In his debut novel, Harrison introduces us to the complex motivations behind John Estem, a civil rights worker with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) who turns FBI informant. Though not explicitly stated, the character is loosely based on Jim Harrison, the comptroller of the SCLC. As the plot unravels, Estem's motivations for turning informant are revealed as an individual conflict within the larger struggle for civil rights. Culminating in the death of Martin Luther King Jr., this novel explores the volatility of social change and the frailties of the human condition when enacting it. Harrison successfully demonstrates that fiction can use the past to comment on issues of contemporary concern. VERDICT An entertaining work of historical fiction with a touch of the noir; readers who enjoyed Don DeLillo's Libra will appreciate. [See Prepub Alert, 5/23/11.]—Joshua Finnell, Denison Univ. Lib., Granville, OH
Kirkus Reviews
John Estem has stolen $10,000 from Martin Luther King Jr. It is 1964, and Estem has been hired by a Southern Christian Leadership Conference executive named Aaron Gant to audit the organization's books. The reactionary establishment wants to hang tax-evasion charges on King. Now Estem has uncovered an odd contribution and decided to pocket the money: "I took it because I could, and no one would ever suspect I was capable of it." An invisible man among high-powered personalities like Andrew Young, Ralph Abernathy and Gant, Estem wanted to impress Candice, a lounge singer in a dive called "Count's." Candy is also Count's girl. With money, Estem bought stylish clothes and a late-model Cadillac. A bundle of contrasts, Estem is arrogant and superior but self-conscious because of a leg brace; he's lonely for a woman's companionship but resentful because he feels patronized; and he's self-pitying and weak-willed but also intelligent and manipulative. And naive. The FBI monitors the SCLC closely, and Strobe and Mathis, agents working to fulfill Hoover's ambition of uncovering Communist influence in the group, catch Estem and extort him into spying. As with novels incorporating historical figures, readers might stumble over the contrast between public persona and fictional presentation. King's humanity is amplified by imagined conversations with Estem wherein King admits his sexual appetites, but King is also beautifully drawn as a questioning, vulnerable, lonely man consumed with his cause. Plot-reliant rather than literary, the narrative gains urgency through use of a present-tense, first-person point of view. The dark conclusion descends into powerful moral ambivalence about love, loyalty and family. Harrison's debut novel contemplates a nightmare inside a dream.
John Wilwol
Our Man in the Dark delights in a cast of "agents, gangsters, and preachers" spitting hard-boiled lines in the kind of gritty spaces you'd expect from a writer who calls Easy Rawlins his favorite fictional hero…But what sets the novel apart is Harrison's clear-eyed treatment of Martin Luther King Jr., who figures prominently in the narrative. Rather than an exercise in hero-making, Harrison's MLK is thoroughly human.
—The Washington Post
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781451625752
  • Publisher: Atria Books
  • Publication date: 11/15/2011
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.38 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 1.04 (d)

Meet the Author

Rashad Harrison has been a contributor to Medicine Agency.com, an online journal of political and cultural commentary, and his writing has appeared in Reed magazine. He lives in Chicago, Illinois.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

1

Night has come, and so have the shadows that once pulled me in against my will. I believed the promises made by those exaggerated figures that followed me, but I am no longer fooled by illusions. Their lies must stay outside. Up these darkened steps, and past that door, is the truth.

My flashlight leads me to the file cabinet. It isn’t locked. There are many files inside, but one in particular intrigues me. It’s labeled JEST in bold letters followed by a sequence of numbers. I open it to reveal a series of black-and-white photos. They show a man leaving a building, crossing a street, and alone inside a telephone booth. At first, I assume they are random individuals of no importance. But then I look closer. They are pictures of me.

I turn to cast my light on the doorway and then back to the photos. I scan them, imagining the clicking of a camera’s shutter as I view each one. I try to make sense of them by placing them in order. The booth, the street, the building. It’s the last one that’s the most telling—it was taken as I left the bank. They were watching me from the beginning.

Atlanta: Summer 1964

I sit at my desk at the headquarters of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, mulling over accounting records and figures. A few years ago, Martin was accused of tax evasion—which is comical, since most of what he earns goes back into the movement. The man lives like a pauper. But we are trying to make sure it doesn’t happen again. Gant has me sifting through the financial records to ensure that Martin hasn’t received any compensation that cannot be accounted for.

I work with a particular column of numbers and notice the sum: fifty thousand dollars. A flash of warmth surges up my neck. This figure is an anomaly, but I don’t suspect any wrongdoing—at least not immediately. Though it troubles me to do so, I feel compelled to bring this to Gant’s attention.

I’ll have to persuade him to see things as I see them, and that is a difficult task. His judgment of me is ruthless and immediate. Anything I question results in a questioning of me. I am exhausted by our exchange before it even begins.

He walks past my open office door in a well-scented hurry. He is one of those handsome men who know they are handsome. Tall, with a face sculpted out of Georgia clay, he has a strange way of using his looks to make you feel inferior. It does not help matters that, as I approach his perfect image, I am slowed by a permanent hobble—my reward for surviving a childhood bout with polio.

I watch Gant and his secretary walk swiftly down the hallway, but before I approach them, I go through my usual ritual of checking that my pant leg has not ridden up to reveal the stirrup of my brace; it creates an unattractive bulkiness under my trousers that annoys me to no end. I adjust my pants and smooth out the fabric so that it falls properly. I don’t want anyone to be uncomfortable in my presence. Even FDR went through strained efforts to appear unaffected by polio. My coworkers shouldn’t feel guilty about their ability to take gallant, even strides as they march alongside Dr. King, while I lurch through the corridors of the SCLC.

I struggle to catch up, asking the back of Gant’s head for a moment of his time, but he insists that he’s in a hurry.

“Mr. Gant. Please . . .” I say, “just five minutes.”

They pause briefly; he asks Susan to grab him some coffee and then turns to me. “Five minutes, Estem. If this is about your Chicago proposal, I haven’t looked over it or discussed it with Martin.”

“No, it isn’t about that. It’s—well, sir, I was going over the figures for the donations . . . and while I’m sure this is probably minor—”

“Your point?”

“A large sum of money, Mr. Gant. And I can’t trace it to any source.”

“Perhaps an old friend of King’s who wants to remain anonymous?”

“There would still be a receipt of some sort.”

“John, the problem? I don’t see it.”

“Mr. Gant, it can’t appear that we—”

“I don’t have time to chase numerical phantoms. Estem, you should remember that we are looking for Martin’s personal transactions that might warrant attention.”

“Sir, it is my responsibility to—”

“I know exactly what your responsibilities are. I made them very clear when I hired you.”

“Yes, Mr. Gant. Yes, and I’m very grateful—”

Susan returns with his coffee. “Mr. Gant, Dr. King is waiting for you in the conference room,” she says.

“Tell Martin I’ll be there shortly. Are we finished here, Estem?”

“Maybe Dr. King could shed some light . . .”

“I’ll try to mention it to him.”

He enters the conference room, and I briefly peer in after him. Martin gives me a knowing nod before Gant quickly closes the door behind him. Muffled sounds soon follow—greetings, laughter, and friendly banter.

It’s fine. This is the way I’m used to being treated. I float around the SCLC like inconsequential vapor, only a vague innocuous presence, giving nothing and taking nothing. I crunch numbers. I stack paper. Occasionally, I move the stack from one end of my desk to the other. If it were not for the creak of my brace, I doubt anybody would know that I’m here. When the secretaries and volunteers gather to form huddled islands of gossip and chatter, I foolishly linger at the edges, hoping to be invited ashore.

My conversation with Gant has left me desperate for a drink, but I need to see her just as much as I need the liquor. After work, I head to my usual nightspot, a bar called Count’s.

The place is a red velvet Ferris wheel of any vice imaginable. Drink. Drugs. Sex. All of them unifying lures for this mixed bunch of seedy characters and squares searching for the cool. I have to hand it to Count: for a place run by a Negro, it does have a certain cosmopolitan feel. Mirrors, tinted Byzantium gold, surround the stone tables and leather booths that are better suited for sipping absinthe than bourbon. Count’s is also marked by integration—but it’s inchoate, one-sided, and gender-specific. You’ll find colored girls with white men, most of whom are policemen. Their presence is meant to keep us safe, but the only things safe in this place are the secrets.

I used to wonder how a man working for the saintly organization of the saintly Dr. King could find himself in such a sinful place. But I’m no saint although I’m a good Christian, and even the best Christians are more familiar with sinners than saints.

The floor vibrates from the dancing patrons and the rolling beat coming from the band on the small stage. I walk along the bar, hoping that my limp appears to be more swagger than stagger. The woman singing with the band is Miss Candy, also known as Candice. She looks just like what her name implies—bad for you, but oh so good. Her singing is awful, but she’s not up there for her voice. She’s like a sepia-tinted dream with fiery red lips flickering in the darkness. Her tight, knee-length dress covered with glittering amber sequins reminds me of a freshly poured glass of champagne. Her hair is pulled back into a tight chignon on the top of her head, à la Josephine Baker. I like it that way.

I watch her hips sway to the final notes of the song, and the crowd applauds as she finishes. They clap for the band, for her hairstyle, and even for that dress—for everything except her singing. However, as she descends from the stage and makes her way through the crowd, some of their cynicism fades. She carries a good portion of her talent behind her, and the men nod appreciatively.

I raise my drink, a signal to her above the noisy gathering. She sees me at the bar and comes over.

“John?” She looks me over with the careful eyes of a fawn. Beads of sweat still linger on her flawless skin.

“Great set tonight,” I say.

“Right. Thanks.” She averts her eyes, looking away from my lie.

“No, really. The crowd seemed to dig it.”

“John, I got the flowers you sent. You’ve got to stop doing things like that. We’ve already talked about this.”

“You didn’t like them?” I’m not looking at her anymore. I stare down into the shadows by her ankles.

“They were fine, but that’s not the point . . .”

Suddenly, white tapered pants and the shine of black patent leather interrupts the darkness. They belong to Count, the owner of the club.

“Candy,” he says.

I don’t look up; his shoes are pointing at me in provocation. Count has warned me before about talking to Candy, and I don’t want to press my luck. I can feel him hover over me, holding his cigarette as if it were a weapon.

“How’s your job going?” she asks.

“Fine . . . making the world better for colored folks everywhere.” I peer up at Count, but I miss his eyes and meet three circular scars on the side of his bald head. He’s proud of them. He must be. At least three times he has made a fool of death.

“It must be exciting working so close to Dr. King.”

“True. I do work closely with Martin. Martin and I are close. I’m the liaison to the financial assistant—”

“Like a bookkeeper or something?”

“Right. A bookkeeper.”

“C’mon, Mama . . . my sugar’s gettin’ low,” Count says, sending a cloud of smoke toward my face.

She gives him an unpleasant look. “I’ve got to run,” she says to me. “It was good seeing you.” After placing a kiss on my forehead, she turns away, and Count guides her by the back of her neck through the crowd.

I turn back to the bar and order a martini, but the bartender gives me a shot of bourbon. It takes six more before I feel man enough to face the room and leave.

I return home that night, drunk and alone. I stand in front of the mirror talking to myself, practicing, awaiting my transition into a superman. It’s a tough feat because of the brace—a strange hybrid of leather and metal, a network of buckles and straps, like stirrup meets straitjacket. I notice, between the open spaces of leather, that the skin of my leg has taken on an ashen hue from the day’s wear, but I do not feel like going through the trouble of removing it just yet.

I go through this ritual after every defeat she serves my ego, analyzing and thinking of ways to improve myself, or at least my appearance. What is Candy’s attraction to Count? It can’t be physical. His expensive clothes can only help him so much. I’m no matinee idol, but with that pockmarked skin, he must shave with broken glass. A vain fellow like Count must have a roomful of mirrors. Someone as ugly as Count should only have bare walls. The torture she must endure, being mounted by that animal.

I go over to my nightstand and pick up evidence of Candy’s ill-fated attempt at a recording career: a dance single called “Do the Gumdrop.” She smiles from the record sleeve holding a large gumdrop the size of a melon above her left shoulder. Count had indulged her by starting a label where she was the only act. I place it on my phonograph, the needle hits the groove and, in a weak tinny voice, Candy instructs me to “Do the Gumdrop, baby. Do it . . . Do it . . . Do the Gumdrop.” I love her and have played her song many times, but I still find it hard to listen to.

Count has created an amusement park full of funhouse mirrors, a place where she can indulge in make-believe and see limitlessly different versions of herself. Trying to decipher what is real must make her dizzy and any attempt to escape futile.

The allure of money and its hold are undeniable. I would love to strut for her and let her have a glimpse of the man I’ve been hiding away. I have tried persistence, but never money. I’ve never tried it because I’ve never had any. This is tragic considering that every day I track its movements. I know money’s habits, I know where it breeds, where it rests, and where it feeds, but it remains elusive. Like a frustrated hunter, I lose its scent somewhere. I look around my meager surroundings. No sign of it here. My apartment is almost unbearable. A simple one-room box. I’ve made no attempt to decorate it. Part of me still senses that there are better things in store for me, and this is not where I want to leave my mark.

Money—no; but power, or something like it, may be within my reach. My idea for a march in Chicago makes sense. Martin, Abernathy, and Young would bring me into the hierarchy once they saw that I was thinking about the long-term advantages for the movement and not just the colorless duties required of my job. I’m just a hopeful pledge, but it could be my opportunity to join their exclusive fraternity. But obviously, I’m being foolish to harbor such aspirations and optimism; Gant would never allow that to happen.

It’ll be morning in a few hours, but I’m not quite drunk enough to sleep so I go to work on my own supply.

I walk my scotch over to the window and light a cigarette. Looking out into the Atlanta night, black with heat, I take a drag and notice that the smoke has taken on a new characteristic. Behind the charcoal and stale tobacco mingled with the bite of menthol is a fourth note: the earthy smell of hand-worn bills.

© 2011 Rashad Harrison

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 22, 2011

    You must read this book!

    This is the book to read!! The characters are fascinating with complex motives at a time in our history where many things were not as they appeared. I was so moved by the end of the book, I wanted to keep reading.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 21, 2011

    Something new has been created here

    Got referred to this title by goodreads. It's pitched as "historical noir"--and there's enough in this book for fans of those genres to be more than satisfied--but Our Man in the Dark transcends most of the limitations of genre. Something new has been created here. John Estem is one the most unforgettable characters recently created.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 16, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    GOOD READ !!!!

    Our Man in the Dark was very good book. Got referred from a friend. This book would br a great book for Book Clubs.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 19, 2012

    Dark Book with Unlikeable Characters

    John Estem has led a life where he has been constantly ridiculed, teased, and disrespected. As a bookkeeper for the SCLC, he hopes to gain respect and participate the movement. Even here he is under-appreciated and ignored. Hoping to gain some self-respect and win the affections of his long-time friend, Candy, John steals money from the SCLC which starts a series of events where John can't be sure how is friend or foe. John finds himself working as an informant for the FBI and taking orders from a gangsta. Soon he's in over his head and unable to find the respect he so needed.

    After accepting this book for review, I became very intrigued with the noir style. After doing a bit of research I discovered that noir fiction is a type of crime story with a cynical twist where almost all the characters in the story are troubled and there is no hero figure. Morality and inhibitions are not strong points and a doom-like theme dominates. This story definitely fits the bill. I liked how the entire plot was unpredictable and their were plenty of twists and turns. After a while, I stopped trying to guess what would happen next. I had to to sit back and watch the drama unfold. None of the characters are especially loveable, or even likeable, which is consistent with the style. I found that I started to view John the same way many of the other characters did. I pitied him and found his actions to be quite naive and deplorable. While there was a lot of action especially toward the end of the book, I felt like I wanted more action in the earlier parts of the story rather than hear the same inner thoughts from John. His self-pity and thoughts about gaining respect were quite repetitive. Additionally, I thought the conversations between Dr. King and John were a bit stilted and out of place. They sounded too formal and a bit unrealistic.

    Overall, if you are interested in historical noir, I think you'll enjoy this dark read that brings many twists and surprises.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 3, 2012

    Such a good read!

    I couldn't put this book down. The author writers his characters so vividly and he puts so much detail into accurately describing 60's Atlanta. Although its historical fiction I found this book to be really educational about the civil rights movement from a different point of view. I highly recommend this book and am looking forward to more from this author.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2011

    Gripping!!! Riveting!! Couldn't put it down!!

    Well done to Rashad Harrison for his debut novel!! Hooked me instantly. I couldn't put it down. Each page was every bit as gripping and powerful as the next and the next and the next. Definitely a must read!! I can't wait to see what's next for this eloquently expressive up and coming wordsmith!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)