Bestselling author Walter Mosley presents characters as they struggle to move through the world in each of these stories—heroes who are awkward, nerdy, self-defeating, self-involved, and, on the whole, odd. He overturns the stereotypes that corral black male characters.
Reading these stories, you feel as if you’re sitting with a gifted storyteller while he spins yarns about the strange people living in his mind. The prolific Mosley delights in the wonderfully bizarre ... Each protagonist seems simple and often shallow on the surface, but as the story progresses he unfurls into greater and frankly breathtaking complexity.
Since Walter Mosley published his first book, Devil in a Blue Dress, in 1990, he’s been exposing, dismantling and subverting stereotypes. Race, ethnicity, gender, class — he’s brought a fresh and discerning eye to all of them, in the midst of writing beautifully crafted fiction and thoughtful nonfiction. I can count on his books not only to engage me but to surprise me, and to make me think...He does all that again in his new short story collection ... One of the most striking things about this collection of stories is how many of them have happy ending.
Fifty-plus books into his career, Mosley hasn't run out of inspired plots, and his interest in social issues remains acute, although he editorializes with the lightest of touches; The Awkward Black Man teems with sharp, quippy dialogue and not a sentence suffers the indignity of a frill ... Leave it to a master of the crime novel like Mosley to give several stories a shocking final twist: a happy ending.