Author: Kekla Magoon
Title: How It Went Down
Narrators: Cherise Boothe , Shari Peele , Kevin R. Free , Avery R. Glymph , and Patricia Lucretia Floyd
Publication Info: Recorded Books, 2014
A story familiar to any American: in a poor urban neighborhood, there’s a scuffle. A white man in a passing car, stops, draws his gun, fires, and a black teenager Tariq Johnson is dead. The police let the shooter go claiming he was exercising self-defense. The novel is told from many voices of Tariq’s family, friends, neighbors, and a visiting minister (who is also running for office) who arrives in town to offer his support. They offer conflicting views – was Tariq a gang member or not, did he have a gun or not – as well as memories of Tariq, and their part in the communal grieving process. This highly nuanced book shows that there are no angels but also that there is no one unworthy of empathy. Excellent reading by a cast of actors performing the various characters’ parts.
Recommended books: Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann