A biting satire about a young man’s isolated upbringing and the race trial that sends him to the Supreme Court, Paul Beatty’s The Sellout showcases a comic genius at the top of his game. It challenges the sacred tenets of the United States Constitution, urban life, the civil rights movement, the father-son relationship, and the holy grail of racial equality―the black Chinese restaurant.
Born in the “agrarian ghetto” of Dickens―on the southern outskirts of Los Angeles―the narrator of The Sellout resigns himself to the fate of lower-middle-class Californians: “I’d die in the same bedroom I’d grown up in, looking up at the cracks in the stucco ceiling that’ve been there since ’68 quake.” Raised by a single father, a controversial sociologist, he spent his childhood as the subject in racially charged psychological studies. He is led to believe that his father’s pioneering work will result in a memoir that will solve his family’s financial woes. But when his father is killed in a police shoot-out, he realizes there never was a memoir. All that’s left is the bill for a drive-thru funeral.
Fueled by this deceit and the general disrepair of his hometown, the narrator sets out to right another wrong: Dickens has literally been removed from the map to save California from further embarrassment. Enlisting the help of the town’s most famous resident―the last surviving Little Rascal, Hominy Jenkins―he initiates the most outrageous action conceivable: reinstating slavery and segregating the local high school, which lands him in the Supreme Court.
A universal story of love and aspiration, betrayal and disappointment, the prose is masterful, simple and moving. The characters are utterly believable and complex in their ordinariness. The author’s portrayal of hard physical tasks in conjunction with the mental effort required to carry on in the face of everyday obstacles and heartbreak is a thing of beauty.
“Coming Rain is a universal story of love and aspiration, betrayal and disappointment. The prose is masterful, simple and moving. The characters are utterly believable and complex in their ordinariness. It was a book that all three judges came across joyfully and read with the ease of those who know they’re in the hands of a confident writer.” Jill Rawnsley, convenor of the 2016 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards Fiction category
Marsden Books Newsletter October 2016
How fortunate we are to be embedded in such a great little community where we are supported by such a loyal group of customers.
Many of you have been shopping with us for so long we count you as friends. It’s especially rewarding to see all our young readers coming in to buy books with such enthusiasm, followed by encouraging and involved parents and grandparents.
Long live the book.
New Zealand Bookshop day, Saturday October 29th
This is a special day when we celebrate bookshops around New Zealand. At 3pm we will have Ned and Gillian, the authors of “In the Bush” and “At the Beach” series. They will be talking about their books and will run a small quiz for visiting children. We shall have spot prizes. All children who visit the shop on Bookshop Day will get a goody bag to take home. Adults will be able to choose a “blind date with a book.” We will also have some surprise special entertainment in the afternoon.
“The Viaduct Postcard” Launch
Thursday November 3rd at 6pm: We are launching a new children’s book written by our very own local author Susan Price and with a very Wellington theme. Please rsvp by November 1st.
We have a selection of Christmas CD’s available and many of the award-winning classical CD’s for 2016.We also have the full range of Harry Potter series on CD read by Stephen Fry.
These are the dates for Christmas Posting.
Rest of the World —Wednesday November 30th
Asia, UK and Europe — Friday 2nd December
Australia —Wednesday 7th December.
There is no economy rate for postage on letters or parcels. International Courier is available to most destinations, and can be posted a bit later. With recent changes to the Karori Postshop we are anticipating extra NZ post business especially at Christmas so please bear with us if service at the counter is a bit slower.
We shall be open Sundays in December, 11am till 3pm
Closed: December 25th, 26th, 27th
Open: Wednesday 28th, 29th, 30th 9am—5pm
Closed: Saturday December 31st, January 1st, 2nd, 3rd
Open: Wednesday January 4th, 5th, 6th 9am—5pm
Open: Saturday January 7th 9am—3pm
We wish you all a very Happy Christmas and New Year, and a safe and relaxing holiday. There is a small Christmas gift for you to collect from us when you are next in the shop.
Happy reading, and thank you for your support this year from the team at Marsden Books.
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Futuna: Life of a building
Edited by Nick Bevin and Greg O’Brien
Limited edition available now at Marsden Books, $125
Standard edition, $50.00
Since its grand opening in 1961, Wellington’s Futuna Chapel – devised by architect John Scott and artist Jim Allen – has held a singular place in New Zealand’s cultural history. Futuna: Life of a Building tells the remarkable story of the chapel’s inception and construction, and its status beyond as well as within the architectural world.
The book also tells the vexed story of the chapel’s sale to a developer in 2001 and its subsequent dereliction and, at the eleventh hour, rescue.
The winners of the 2016 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults