A dark and socially provocative Southern-fried comedy about four UC Berkeley students who stage a dramatic protest during a Civil War reenactment - a fierce, funny, tragic work from a bold new writer. Born and raised in the heart of old Dixie, D'aron Davenport is a small-town fish floundering in the depths of a large, hyper-liberal pond of UC Berkeley. Everything changes in his American History class, when D'aron lets slip that his hometown hosts an annual Civil War re-enactment. His announcement is met with righteous indignation, and inspires a 'performative intervention'. Armed with youthful self-importance, makeshift slave costumes, righteous zeal and their own misguided ideas about the South, D'aron and his three idiosyncratic best friends descend on Braggsville. Their journey through backwoods churches, backroom politics, Waffle Houses and drunken family barbecues is uproarious to start, but will have devastating consequences. A literary coming-of-age novel for a new generation, written with keen wit, tremendous social insight and a unique, generous heart, Welcome to Braggsville reminds us of the promise and perils of youthful exuberance, while painting an indelible portrait of contemporary America.
'A radical book in every sense of the word - thoroughgoing and extreme, ghastly and funny and gloriously provocative, a gauntlet thrown ... Its laugh-out-loud humour always underscores the pain of exile ... Johnson's prose is by turns scathing dark humour, soaring lyricism, and a quietly devastating analysis of every species of injustice. The result is a kind of mind-melting poetry - a linguistic electroconvulsive therapy for the reader. This book will wake you up! Welcome to Braggsville toggles brilliantly between tragedy and comedy and never lets the reader off the hook'
Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia
'Transcendence is what Geronimo Johnson achieves in this remarkable novel. Every racial assumption is both acknowledged and challenged in ways at times hilarious, at other times poignant. 'Welcome to Braggsville' is ambitious, wise, and brave.' Ron Rash, bestselling author of 'Serena'
'Geronimo Johnson is a fearless and driven young writer of dazzling gifts. His books map American multiculture as a poignant and twisted human comedy in which nobody comes outclean... surprising, heartbreaking, tragicomic, and deeply disturbing.'
Jaimy Gordon, author of Lord of Misrule
'Geronimo Johnson's powerful second novel combines the intellectual urgency of a satire with the emotional resonance of a tragedy. Welcome to Braggsville is as smart as it is subversive, and as bleakly hilarious as it is deeply necessary'
Jennifer duBois, author of A Partial History of Lost Causes
'Combines Ben Fountain's steely political eye, Junot Diaz's pop-infused dogma, and Toni Morrison's sense of social justice through historical reckoning. All that to say this: Welcome to Braggsville is the best and most powerful form of satire; it sets fire to your brain while expanding your heart. Big, shiny literary prizes were created for books like this one'
Wiley Cash, author of This Dark Road to Mercy
Publication date: 26/02/2015
Publisher: Fourth Estate Ltd an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
|Publication date:||26th February 2015|
|Author:||T. Geronimo Johnson|
|Publisher:||Fourth Estate Ltd an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers|
|Genres:||eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,|
Born in New Orleans, T. Geronimo Johnson received his MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop and his M.A. in Language, Literacy, and Culture from UC Berkeley. He has taught writing and held fellowships-including a Stegner Fellowship and an Iowa Arts Fellowship-at ASU, Iowa, Berkeley, Western Michigan University and Stanford. He is also a curriculum designer for Bay Area non-profits and director of the UC Berkeley Summer Creative Writing Program. His fiction and poetry have appeared in Best New American Voices, the Indiana Review, the LA Review, and Illuminations, among other literary publications. His first novel Hold It 'Til It ...More About T. Geronimo Johnson