Cover of A Lucky Man: Stories
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A Lucky Man: Stories

By: Jamel Brinkley

Publisher: GRAY WOLF PR

Imprint: Graywolf Press

Format: Hardcover | ISBN: 9781555978051

Other Formats:

Trade Paperback

On Sale: | Pages: 264

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  • About the Book
  • Reviews
FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FOR FICTIONIn the nine expansive, searching stories of A Lucky Man, fathers and sons attempt to salvage relationships with friends and family members and confront mistakes made in the past. An imaginative young boy from the Bronx goes swimming with his group from day camp at a backyard pool in the suburbs, and faces the effects of power and privilege in ways he can barely grasp. A teen intent on proving himself a man through the all-night revel of J'Ouvert can't help but look out for his impressionable younger brother. A pair of college boys on the prowl follow two girls home from a party and have to own the uncomfortable truth of their desires. And at a capoeira conference, two brothers grapple with how to tell the story of their family, caught in the dance of their painful, fractured history.Jamel Brinkley's stories, in a debut that announces the arrival of a significant new voice, reflect the tenderness and vulnerability of black men and boys whose hopes sometimes betray them, especially in a world shaped by race, gender, and class--where luck may be the greatest fiction of all.
Brinkley's book is packed with valuable, if disconcerting, insights. His stories, frequently set in New York City, where he grew up, often focus on introspective black male characters. Race is an important theme, but it's just one of many subjects that inspire him: He's particularly sharp on the ways in which children use fantasy to fortify themselves, and his depictions of love's many varieties are subtle and deeply observant.... With this observant book, Brinkley demonstrates an enviable capacity for narrative compression. In the space of 25 pages, he's capable of creating complex and memorable emotional worlds. This is a very hard thing to do, but in "A Lucky Man," he pulls it off in one story after the next.
—Minneapolis Star Tribune
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