Blacktop Wasteland by S.A. Cosby
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Equal parts thrilling, heartbreaking, and staggering, and wholly entertaining.
There are so many layers to this story; family dynamics, the daily struggles of a black man raising two sons in an openly racist society. Economic woes, sins of a father, marriage trials, dealing with an often corrupt and broken justice system, but written in a way that teaches and is simultaneously entertaining. It brought to mind Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me when Beauregard is talking to his oldest son.
The violence is real and raw but it’s done well enough to be palatable for the average reader but may be auto accident bit much for those that are more sensitive. I was definitely cringing while reading some parts, but it was all necessary to the story and never excessively grotesque.
One of my favorite aspects of this book is the vocabulary. I was glad I was reading on my Kindle so I could highlight unfamiliar words.
Blacktop is the breakout novel in what I am now calling the newest genre of books, “action”, recently only used by movies and television. Never before have I white-knuckled a book while reading. It has all the elements of a blockbuster hit and was a wild ride to the very end.
Thank you, Flatiron Books for the galley copy. The opinions are my own.
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