4 reasons to read The Sellout
So we had our 15th Anniversary Book Group gathering last night and the book in the spotlight, The Sellout by Paul Beatty, was highly praised by all but one of our number, getting 9s and even 10s in our scores (for Literary Merit and Enjoyment), one of the most popular choices in the whole decade and a half.
My review on Goodreads: A dense and intense tour de force with shades of Catch 22 (absurdity), David Foster Wallace (intensity) and Candide (humanity), filled with insight about how black people are seen and see themselves in the USA (and beyond).
Here are 4 good reasons to read this standout satirical novel:
(i) On lawyers:
The Chief Justice meekly raises his hand.
“Excuse me, Mr Fiske [the defending lawyer], I have a question…”
“Not right now, motherfucker, I’m on a roll!”
(ii) On education:
Two hundred kids quieted instantly and turned their attention deficit disorders toward me.
(iii) On weed:
“What the fuck is this, dog?” Puppet coughed.
“I call it Carpal Tunnel. Go ahead, try to make a fist.”
Puppet tried to ball his hand but failed.
(iv) On intellectuals:
The meetings consisted mostly of the members who showed up every other week arguing with the ones who came every other month about what exactly “bimonthly” means.”
Classic satire in the heritage of Waugh and Swift that’s laugh-out-loud funny.