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by Jesse McCarthy, associate professor of English, African American, and African History at Harvard University.
Like most recent college graduates, Jonah Winters is unsure of what’s next. A young black American raised in France and living in New York City, he tries on a couple of careers only to find that nothing feels right. And as Jonah struggles to envision his future, he feels pressured by his friends and family to put the struggles of his community before his search for self.
But then a chance encounter with an ex-NBA player with his own regrets, inspires Jonah to take his life into his own hands. Deciding to leave the country entirely, he sets off for Brazil. And as he makes and breaks friendships on the way, reflects on his past relationships, and learns to rely on himself, Jonah slowly forms an understanding of self, community, and freedom that is rarely afforded to young black men.
“McCarthy’s spiralling, exquisitely cadenced prose is a shot of adrenaline, enlivening an ambitious twenty-first-century sentimental education that recalls Ben Lerner, Ralph Ellison, and Roberto Bolaño.”—The New Yorker