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Loving Day: A Novel

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A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK • “[Mat Johnson’s] unrelenting examination of blackness, whiteness and everything in between is handled with ruthless candor and riotous humor.”—Los Angeles Times

“Razor-sharp . . . Loving Day is that rare mélange: cerebral comedy with pathos.”—The New York Times Book Review

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
The New York TimesSan Francisco Chronicle • NPR • Men’s JournalThe Miami HeraldThe Denver PostSlateThe Kansas City StarSan Antonio Express-News • Time Out New York

Warren Duffy has returned to America for all the worst reasons: His marriage to a beautiful Welsh woman has come apart; his comics shop in Cardiff has failed; and his Irish American father has died, bequeathing to Warren his last possession, a roofless, half-renovated mansion in the heart of black Philadelphia. On his first night in his new home, Warren spies two figures outside in the grass. When he screws up the nerve to confront them, they disappear. The next day he encounters ghosts of a different kind: In the face of a teenage girl he meets at a comics convention he sees the mingled features of his white father and his black mother, both now dead. The girl, Tal, is his daughter, and she’s been raised to think she’s white.

Spinning from these revelations, Warren sets off to remake his life with a reluctant daughter he’s never known, in a haunted house with a history he knows too well. In their search for a new life, he and Tal struggle with ghosts, fall in with a utopian mixed-race cult, and ignite a riot on Loving Day, the unsung holiday for interracial lovers.

A frequently hilarious, surprisingly moving story about blacks and whites, fathers and daughters, the living and the dead, Loving Day celebrates the wonders of opposites bound in love.

Praise for Loving Day

“Incisive . . . razor-sharp . . . that rare mélange: cerebral comedy with pathos. The vitality of our narrator deserves much of the credit for that. He has the neurotic bawdiness of Philip Roth’s Alexander Portnoy; the keen, caustic eye of Bob Jones in Chester Himes’s If He Hollers Let Him Go; the existential insight of Ellison’s Invisible Man.”The New York Times Book Review

“Exceptional . . . To say that Loving Day is a book about race is like saying Moby-Dick is a book about whales. . . . [Mat Johnson’s] unrelenting examination of blackness, whiteness and everything in between is handled with ruthless candor and riotous humor. . . . Even when the novel’s family strife and racial politics are at peak intensity, Johnson’s comic timing is impeccable.”Los Angeles Times

“Johnson, at his best, is a powerful comic observer [and] a gifted writer, always worth reading on the topics of race and privilege.’”—Dwight Garner, The New York Times

ISBN-13: 9780812983661

Media Type: Paperback(Reprint)

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group

Publication Date: 09-06-2016

Pages: 304

Product Dimensions: 5.29(w) x 7.96(h) x 0.70(d)

Mat Johnson is the author of the novels Pym, Drop, and Hunting in Harlem, the nonfiction novella The Great Negro Plot, and the comic books Incognegro and Dark Rain. He is a recipient of the United States Artist James Baldwin Fellowship, the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and the John Dos Passos Prize for Literature. He is a faculty member at the University of Houston Creative Writing Program.

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Excerpted from "Loving Day"
by .
Copyright © 2016 Mat Johnson.
Excerpted by permission of Random House Publishing Group.
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