I would have loved to be a fly on the wall of all the publishers author Paul Beatty approached with his manuscript, saying: “Picture this: in the city of Los Angeles, there’s a disappearing ghetto call Dickens, in said ghetto, a black man starts a farm, but in order to place his neighborhood back on the map, he plans to bring back segregation to the masses by first making the last surviving Little Rascal, (Hominy Jenkins) his personal slave, actions which land him in the Supreme Court.”
Looking at all those jaws hitting the floor would have been worth the price of admission.
But that’s just simplifying what this towering work of satire means in a so-call ‘post racial’ America at a time when shit seems to be hitting the fan. Like the bastard son of Richard Prior, Dick Gregory, and Dave Chappelle this book is witty, smart, and acerbic, in possession of a language that burns with deep insightful anger.
”The Supreme Court is where the country takes out its dick and tits and decides who’s going to get fucked and who’s getting a taste of mother’s milk. It’s constitutional pornography in there…and what…about obscenity? I know it when I see it…Me vs. the United States of America demands a more fundamental examination of what we mean by ‘separate,’ by ‘equal,’ by ‘black.’”
The Sellout by Paul Beatty is biting satire of the highest order and by far, my favorite book of the year.
5 out of 5