From the National Book Critics Circle Award-winning author of Motherless Brooklyn , comes the vividly told story of Dylan Ebdus growing up white and motherless in downtown Brooklyn in the 1970s. Read more...
From the National Book Critics Circle Award-winning author of Motherless Brooklyn, comes the vividly told story of Dylan Ebdus growing up white and motherless in downtown Brooklyn in the 1970s. In a neighborhood where the entertainments include muggings along with games of stoopball, Dylan has one friend, a black teenager, also motherless, named Mingus Rude. Through the knitting and unraveling of the boys' friendship, Lethem creates an overwhelmingly rich and emotionally gripping canvas of race and class, superheros, gentrification, funk, hip-hop, graffiti tagging, loyalty, and memory.
"A tour de force.... Belongs to a venerable New York literary tradition that stretches back through Go Tell It on the Mountain, A Walker in the City, and Call it Sleep." --The New York Times Magazine
"One of the richest, messiest, most ambitious, most interesting novels of the year.... Lethem grabs and captures 1970s New York City, and he brings it to a story worth telling." --Time"
The Fortress of Solitude
Spanning a turbulent 30 years, Lethem's expansive new novel examines issues of race and class in his native New York. When Rachel and Abraham Edbus move to Brooklyn in the early 1970s, they're one of the only white families in the neighborhood. This spells trouble for their son Dylan, who must attend predominately black public schools and defend himself against the local toughs. Fortunately, he finds a friend in Mingus, an African-American boy who is a talented artist. The pair share a love of comics books, graffiti and funk records. But a consuming drug habit makes Mingus an increasingly distant figure in Dylan's life, and he soon begins a tragic downward spiral. Dylan goes on to become a music journalist, and the novel itself has an extensive soundtrack, so to speak, as Lethem references the history of hip-hop, blues and pop music. This is a smart, ambitious novel from one of America's finest writers. A reading group guide is available in print and online at www.readinggroupcenter.com.