WATCH: Chinelo Okparanta and Akwaeke Emezi on the Tensions of Our Time
Hosted by Greenlight Bookstore
Greenlight is delighted to welcome award-winning author Chinelo Okparanta for the New York launch of her newest novel, Harry Sylvester Bird, a brilliant, provocative, up-to-the-minute satire about a young white man’s education and miseducation in contemporary America.
Harry Sylvester Bird grows up in Edward, Pennsylvania, with his racist, xenophobic, financially incompetent, secret-keeping parents. To Harry, they represent everything wrong with this country. And his small town isn’t any better. He witnesses racial profiling, graffitied swastikas, and White Power signs on his walk home from school. When he’s finally old enough to leave, he moves straight to New York City, where he meets and falls in love with Maryam, a young Nigerian woman. But when Maryam begins to pull away, Harry is forced to confront his identity as he never has before—if he can.
Akwaeke Emezi (You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty) joins Okparanta in conversation for a reading and discussion of this brilliant, funny, original, and unflinching look at all the most pressing tensions and anxieties of our time—and of the history that has shaped us and might continue to do so.
Founded in October 2009 by Rebecca Fitting and Jessica Stockton Bagnulo, Greenlight Bookstore is an independent bookstore in Brooklyn, New York. Combining the best traditions of the neighborhood bookstore with carefully curated, community-minded events, Greenlight has earned a reputation as a literary destination. Greenlight has continued to serve its community during the COVID-19 pandemic with a diverse array of virtual events, and has been inspired by the movements for racial justice across the country to engage in the work of becoming a more anti-racist company. Learn more at greenlightbookstore.com or check them out @greenlightbklyn.