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Heads of the Colored People : Stories
by Nafissa Thompson-Spires


Overview - This "vivid, fast, funny, way-smart, and verbally inventive" (George Saunders, author of Lincoln in the Bardo ) collection of stories examines the concept of black identity in this so-called post-racial era.

A stunning new talent in literary fiction, Nafissa Thompson-Spires grapples with black identity and the contemporary middle class in these compelling, boundary-pushing vignettes "stuffed with invention" ( Publishers Weekly ).  Read more...


 
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More About Heads of the Colored People by Nafissa Thompson-Spires
 
 
 
Overview
This "vivid, fast, funny, way-smart, and verbally inventive" (George Saunders, author of Lincoln in the Bardo) collection of stories examines the concept of black identity in this so-called post-racial era.

A stunning new talent in literary fiction, Nafissa Thompson-Spires grapples with black identity and the contemporary middle class in these compelling, boundary-pushing vignettes "stuffed with invention" (Publishers Weekly).

Each captivating story plunges headfirst into the lives of new, utterly original characters. Some are darkly humorous--from two mothers exchanging snide remarks through notes in their kids' backpacks, to the young girl contemplating how best to notify her Facebook friends of her impending suicide--while others are devastatingly poignant--a new mother and funeral singer who is driven to madness with grief for the young black boys who have fallen victim to gun violence, or the teen who struggles between her upper middle class upbringing and her desire to fully connect with black culture.

Thompson-Spires fearlessly shines a light on the simmering tensions and precariousness of black citizenship. Her stories are exquisitely rendered, satirical, and captivating in turn, engaging in the ongoing conversations about race and identity politics, as well as the vulnerability of the black body. "Heads of the Colored People is a necessary and powerful new collection with, thankfully, not a dull sentence to be found" (Peter Orner, author of Am I Alone Here?). Boldly resisting categorization and easy answers, Thompson-Spires's collection "cements her role as an incredibly important voice in literature right now" (PopSugar).

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781501168000
  • ISBN-10: 1501168002
  • Publisher: Atria Books
  • Publish Date: January 2019
  • Page Count: 224
  • Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.4 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > African American - General
Books > Fiction > Humorous - General
Books > Fiction > Short Stories (single author)

 
BookPage Reviews

Book Clubs: February 2019

Top Pick: An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
An Oprah’s Book Club pick in 2018, Tayari Jones’ electrifying fourth novel, An American Marriage, tells the story of Roy and Celestial, a newly married couple whose future looks bright. Celestial is an up-and-coming artist and Roy is a business executive, but their lives are shattered when the couple travels to Roy’s hometown in Louisiana, where he’s wrongfully accused of a terrible crime and sentenced to 12 years in prison. Jones presents a poignant portrait of the once-optimistic couple and the injustices they face as husband and wife during Roy’s incarceration. When he’s released after serving almost half his sentence, the pair struggles to resume their lives and regain a sense of normalcy. Told in part through the letters Roy and Celestial exchange while he’s imprisoned, Jones’ skillfully constructed narrative feels all too timely. It’s at once a powerful portrayal of marriage and a shrewd exploration of America’s justice system. 


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Heads of the Colored People
by Nafissa Thompson-Spires

Long-listed for the 2018 National Book Award, these shrewdly observed, expertly crafted stories of the African-American experience signal the arrival of an important writer.

 

This article was originally published in the February 2019 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
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