Deacon King Kong: A Novel (Large Print / Paperback)
In the fall of 1969, Sportcoat, an older deacon of a church in the housing projects of Brooklyn, shoots a young drug dealer in front of the entire neighborhood. The motivation seems obvious, but enter these pages to discover that obvious is rarely just so, and the ghosts of hope, disappointment, and struggle are ever present. Every character from the pastor's wife to the Italian mobster is infused with such depth and complexity that stereotypes are washed away in the cool water of these pages. McBride brilliantly gives us joy without diminishing the difficulties of poverty and racism, and humor so warm and loving you will be sad to leave this community.— Linda
March 2020 Indie Next List
“Deacon King Kong is a quintessential New York story. Set in the Brooklyn projects in 1969, a perpetually inebriated deacon called Sportcoat aims a gun at the neighborhood’s main drug dealer in the public plaza and pulls the trigger. Incredibly well-constructed and hilarious at times, McBride’s story entwines a number of storylines that are kickstarted by this central event. The local Italian gangster, the veteran cop, the meddling churchgoers, and the drug pushers all have their own agendas, hopes, and dreams that are affected. And though Sportcoat doesn’t remember his actions and is always under the influence of gut-rot moonshine, I couldn’t help but root for him as I was reading this. His delightful ineptitude and absence of clarity made this book impossible for me to put down. If you’ve never read McBride before, this is a great introduction.”
— Stuart McCommon, Novel., Memphis, TN
About the Author
James McBride is an accomplished musician and author of the National Book Award–winning The Good Lord Bird, the #1 bestselling American classic The Color of Water, and the bestsellers Song Yet Sung and Miracle at St. Anna. He is also the author of Kill ’Em and Leave, a James Brown biography. A recipient of the National Humanities Medal in 2016, McBride is a Distinguished Writer in Residence at New York University.