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The Nickel Boys (Winner 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction): A Novel - Hardcover

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9780385537070: The Nickel Boys (Winner 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction): A Novel
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In this bravura follow-up to the Pulitzer Prize, and National Book Award-winning #1

New York Times

bestseller

The Underground Railroad

, Colson Whitehead brilliantly dramatizes another strand of American history through the story of two boys sentenced to a hellish reform school in Jim Crow-era Florida.
As the Civil Rights movement begins to reach the black enclave of Frenchtown in segregated Tallahassee, Elwood Curtis takes the words of Dr. Martin Luther King to heart: He is "as good as anyone." Abandoned by his parents, but kept on the straight and narrow by his grandmother, Elwood is about to enroll in the local black college. But for a black boy in the Jim Crow South of the early 1960s, one innocent mistake is enough to destroy the future. Elwood is sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, whose mission statement says it provides "physical, intellectual and moral training" so the delinquent boys in their charge can become "honorable and honest men."
In reality, the Nickel Academy is a grotesque chamber of horrors where the sadistic staff beats and sexually abuses the students, corrupt officials and locals steal food and supplies, and any boy who resists is likely to disappear "out back." Stunned to find himself in such a vicious environment, Elwood tries to hold onto Dr. King's ringing assertion "Throw us in jail and we will still love you." His friend Turner thinks Elwood is worse than naive, that the world is crooked, and that the only way to survive is to scheme and avoid trouble.
The tension between Elwood's ideals and Turner's skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades. Formed in the crucible of the evils Jim Crow wrought, the boys' fates will be determined by what they endured at the Nickel Academy.

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  • PublisherDoubleday
  • Publication date2019
  • ISBN 10 0385537077
  • ISBN 13 9780385537070
  • BindingHardcover
  • Edition number1
  • Rating
    4.26 avg rating
    ( 234,359 ratings by Goodreads )

Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780345804341: The Nickel Boys: A Novel

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  ISBN 13:  9780345804341
Publisher: Anchor, 2020
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9780708899427: The Nickel Boys: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2020

Fleet, 2020
Softcover

9780708899410: The Nickel Boys: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2020

Fleet, 2019
Hardcover

9781984892249: The Nickel Boys (Winner 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction)

Softcover

9780708899434: The Nickel Boys: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2020: Colson Whitehead

Fleet, 2019
Softcover

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