It's the summer of 1985 and Benji is determined that this is the summer when things will change and he'll fit in. For starters, he'll be reinvented as 'Ben'. When that doesn't catch on, it's another summer of the perpetual mortification that is teenage existence.
Benji spends most of the year as one of the only black kids at an elite prep school in Manhattan, going to roller disco bar mitzvahs, desperately trying to find his place in the social hierarchy.
Then he spends his summers in the African-American community of Sag Harbor on Long Island, and is just as confused. He's way behind on the latest handshakes, baffled by new slang, and his attempts to be cool and meet girls are constantly thwarted by his extremely awkward inner geek, braces and a badly cut Afro.
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He weaves a spell that is by turns enchanting, mood-shifting, and side-splitting, sharing the sweet, sad secrets of his mixed-up, mid-’80s adolescence –- Elle
Intimate and autobiographical story ... the novel can’t help but hold your attention -- Dazed and Confused
The Coolest Writer in America - He's widely admired, ever smooth, a master of writing important books –- Esquire
Whitehead is a smart guy and a dazzling talent ... he has a David Foster Wallace-esque knack for punctuating meticulously figurative constructions with deadpan slacker wit -- Los Angeles Times
A love letter not only to the Long Island town and African-American summer enclave but to '80s culture and The Cosby Show; to hip-hop and upper-middle-class black culture -- Dallas Morning News
Sea-breeze buoyant ... each reunion with a childhood Sag Harbor friend means a chance for Benji to study and analyze new affectations. Mr. Whitehead, whose previous novels include The Intuitionist and John Henry Days, describes this process so entertainingly that it becomes the book’s greatest asset…. What’s best about Sag Harbor is the utter and sometimes mortifying accuracy of its descriptive details -- New York Times
It is impossible not to like Sag Harbor and its genuinely empathetic, intelligent tone - The Times Whitehead proves himself, among other things, a poet of the American summer and its aspirations…remarkable -- Guardian
"Whitehead proves himself, among other things, a poet of the American summer and its aspirations...remarkable" ( Guardian)
"It's rare to come across a coming-of-age novel as polished as Colson Whitehead's Sag Harbor" ( New Statesman)
"it is impossible not to like Sag Harbor and its genuinely empathetic, intelligent tone" (Neel Mukherjee The Times)
"Coming-of-age tales set in the 1970s and 1980s may be two-a-penny but Colson Whitehead has managed to add a distinctive twist to the genre... It is both a universal tale of adolescent angst and a fascinating portrait of Sag Harbor" (Adrian Turpin Financial Times)
"Whitehead's delicious language and sarcastic, clever voice fit this teenager who's slowly constructing himself" ( New York Times)
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Book Description Vintage. Book Condition: New. Brand New. Includes everything it's supposed to include. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 850886
Book Description Book Condition: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Bookseller Inventory # 97800995318830000000
Book Description Vintage, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Shipped from the UK within 2 business days of order being placed. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000022402
Book Description Vintage, London, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 288 pages. 7.80x5.08x0.71 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk0099531887