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Black Boy White Schoolby Brian F Walker
Synopses & Reviews
He couldnt listen to music or talk on the phone without her jumping all over him about what they listened to up in Maine, or how they talked up in Maine, or how he better not go up to Maine and start acting ghetto.
Anthonys mother didnt even know where it was until hed shown it to her on a map, but that still didnt stop her from acting like she was born there.
Anthony “Ant” Jones has never been outside his rough East Cleveland neighborhood when hes given a scholarship to Belton Academy, an elite prep school in Maine.But at Belton things are far from perfect. Everyone calls him “Tony,” assumes hes from Brooklyn, expects him to play basketball, and yet acts shocked when he fights back.
As Anthony tries to adapt to a world that will never fully accept him, hes in for a rude awakening: Home is becoming a place where he no longer belongs.
In debut author Brian F. Walkers hard-hitting novel about staying true to yourself, Anthony might find a way to survive at Belton, but what will it cost him?
"Walker's powerful debut never shies from violence (often stark), as it follows 14-year-old Anthony, aka 'Ant,' from his poor East Cleveland neighborhood to preppy Belton Academy in Maine, exploring issues of racial identity and class. Although the standard 'overcoming adversity' tropes appear, they pale compared to Walker's forceful narrative voice and fast-paced storytelling. After his friend Mookie is killed, Ant resolves to take advantage of the scholarship offer he's received and go to Belton. Ant soon discovers plenty of bigotry (including the occasional well-meaning assumption that he'll be on the basketball team), but he also learns to balance his identity within the school with his roots in Cleveland. Had Walker left the novel there, it would still be a solid story, but his exploration of the effect of race and class on identity carries the story far. If there are a few moments of rote clichÃ© (a teacher actually tells Ant, 'You helped me grow up, too'), the writing and characters easily compensate for the occasional stumble. Ages 14 — up. Agent: Jodie Rhodes Literary Agency." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Brian F. Walker grew up in East Cleveland, where he ran with gangsters, drug dealers, and thugs until age fourteen, when he was sent to an elite boarding school and a world he had no way of understanding. For the past seventeen years he has taught high school English, coached basketball, and served as an admissions officer at a prep school in Weston, Massachusetts. He recently won a grant for fiction writing from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, in addition to numerous awards for playwriting, short stories, and journalism. Brian lives in Massachusetts with his wife and daughter.
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