About this event
Join Charis Books and More, Books & Books, and the Miami Book Fair in welcoming Colson Whitehead for a virtual celebration of his novel, Harlem Shuffle.
This event is hosted by Books & Books and the Miami Book Fair but your purchase of a book-bundled ticket will support Charis.
About the book: "Ray Carney was only slightly bent when it came to being crooked..." To his customers and neighbors on 125th street, Carney is an upstanding salesman of reasonably priced furniture, making a decent life for himself and his family. He and his wife Elizabeth are expecting their second child, and if her parents on Striver's Row don't approve of him or their cramped apartment across from the subway tracks, it's still home.
Few people know he descends from a line of uptown hoods and crooks, and that his façade of normalcy has more than a few cracks in it. Cracks that are getting bigger all the time.
Cash is tight, especially with all those installment-plan sofas, so if his cousin Freddie occasionally drops off the odd ring or necklace, Ray doesn't ask where it comes from. He knows a discreet jeweler downtown who doesn't ask questions, either.
Then Freddie falls in with a crew who plan to rob the Hotel Theresa—the "Waldorf of Harlem"—and volunteers Ray's services as the fence. The heist doesn't go as planned; they rarely do. Now Ray has a new clientele, one made up of shady cops, vicious local gangsters, two-bit pornographers, and other assorted Harlem lowlifes.
Thus begins the internal tussle between Ray the striver and Ray the crook. As Ray navigates this double life, he begins to see who actually pulls the strings in Harlem. Can Ray avoid getting killed, save his cousin, and grab his share of the big score, all while maintaining his reputation as the go-to source for all your quality home furniture needs?
Harlem Shuffle's ingenious story plays out in a beautifully recreated New York City of the early 1960s. It's a family saga masquerading as a crime novel, a hilarious morality play, a social novel about race and power, and ultimately a love letter to Harlem.
But mostly, it's a joy to read, another dazzling novel from the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning Colson Whitehead.
About the Author:
COLSON WHITEHEAD is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of ten works of fiction and nonfiction, and is a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for The Nickel Boys and The Underground Railroad, which also won the National Book Award. A recipient of MacArthur and Guggenheim Fellowships, he lives in New York City.
About the interviewer:
ADAM SERWER is a staff writer for the Ideas section of The Atlantic and the author of the New York Times bestselling essay collection The Cruelty Is The Point. He was previously the national editor at BuzzFeed News, a national reporter for MSNBC, and a reporter for Mother Jones. He is the recipient of the 2019 Hillman Prize for commentary and analysis, the 2015 Sigma Delta Chi Award for online column writing, The 2020 Vernon Jarrett Medal, and the 2019 National Association of Black Journalists Salute to Excellence Award for magazine commentary.
This event will take place on zoom and you will receive a separate email no later than 5pm ET on the day of the event with your unique viewing link. The event will be available to view for ticket holders for a few days after the live airing.
A book bundled ticket, which allows you to view the event and includes a copy of the book, is required for this event. Please be sure to select either local pick up if you would like to come to our store at184 S. Candler St. Decatur, GA 30030 to pick up your book, or shipping if you would like your book shipped to you. If you choose local book pick up, please wait for us to email you to let you know you book is ready for pick up.