Shelf Location: Young Adult
This review is solely my opinion. I was provided a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. The comments in this review do not reflect the views of the author or the publisher. The copy used in this review is a finished copy.
I’m a twenty-two-year-old Black introvert who overthinks everything, can’t get a date, yet somehow managed to graduate from Harvard.
My story is probably not like yours. I’m a Black boy from the Midwest. I’ve never been kissed. I’m desperately in love with two women: Aretha and Whitney. I struggle with a mild form of social anxiety. I sing to myself almost everywhere I go. I’m an ex-chitlins (with hot sauce and ketchup) lover. I’ve been called an Oreo. I’ve been stopped by the police while walking home. I’m the descendant of slaves, and a Harvard graduate.
Though our stories may not be the same, the universal themes explored in this poignant and personal literary collection—love, identity, hope, social justice, and coming of age—bond us together. Timestamp: Musings of an Introverted Black Boy is many things: It’s one Black boy’s journey through college and into adulthood. It’s a compilation of intimate musings, short and long. It’s an anthology of reflections linked to distinct moments in time. It’s a series of meditations on life, love, and the lack thereof. It’s not simply a “Black” book, or even a “millennial” one. It’s a human book.
I wrote it for everyone—and that includes you!
This book is unapologetically written about Marcus Granperson. It is a pure expression of his thoughts and wonderfully written. He dives into issues that many people of color face but don’t have a platform to discuss it on. This book is written in a diary-style format with dates and titles. The author allows the reader to be involved fully in his thought process, his challenges, and the identities people have placed on him. I related a lot to his testimony and I enjoyed the religious aspect of the novel. This book hit all of my high points for a memoir-style novel. It discussed social injustice, colorism in the black community, racism, and religion. I enjoyed the fact that the author was completely honest with the reader, exposing the challenges he faced and the ways he overcame them. One of my favorite quotes from this book is:
Life is too short to spend time entertaining people committed to misunderstanding us. There’s work to be done, and we must be free to do it—because the world needs us. Most importantly, we need us.
Marcus is an African American male who graduated from Harvard and now lives in New York. He has never experienced a romantic kind of love but embraces the love he has experience with the people he interacts with. He fully emphasizes the impact of the intimate encounters he has had with friends and family. He never truly feels alone, loves Jesus, and fully dissects every encounter. He delves into the now and states that “every moment is a last moment.” I highly recommend this novel for any person of color or anyone interested in a humorous and thought-provoking novel written by a person of color about themselves.
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