Deacon King Kong (Oprah's Book Club) - James McBride

Deacon King Kong (Oprah's Book Club)

By James McBride

  • Release Date: 2020-03-03
  • Genre: Black Literature
4 Score: 4 (From 2,071 Ratings)


Winner of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Fiction
Winner of the Gotham Book Prize

One of Barack Obama's "Favorite Books of the Year"

Oprah's Book Club Pick

Named one of the Top Ten Books of the Year by the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly and TIME Magazine

A Washington Post Notable Novel

From the author of The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store, the National Book Award–winning The Good Lord Bird, and the bestselling modern classic The Color of Water, comes one of the most celebrated novels of the year.

In September 1969, a fumbling, cranky old church deacon known as Sportcoat shuffles into the courtyard of the Cause Houses housing project in south Brooklyn, pulls a .38 from his pocket, and, in front of everybody, shoots the project’s drug dealer at point-blank range.

The reasons for this desperate burst of violence and the consequences that spring from it lie at the heart of Deacon King Kong, James McBride’s funny, moving novel and his first since his National Book Award–winning The Good Lord Bird. In Deacon King Kong, McBride brings to vivid life the people affected by the shooting: the victim, the African-American and Latinx residents who witnessed it, the white neighbors, the local cops assigned to investigate, the members of the Five Ends Baptist Church where Sportcoat was deacon, the neighborhood’s Italian mobsters, and Sportcoat himself.

As the story deepens, it becomes clear that the lives of the characters—caught in the tumultuous swirl of 1960s New York—overlap in unexpected ways. When the truth does emerge, McBride shows us that not all secrets are meant to be hidden, that the best way to grow is to face change without fear, and that the seeds of love lie in hope and compassion.

Bringing to these pages both his masterly storytelling skills and his abiding faith in humanity, James McBride has written a novel every bit as involving as The Good Lord Bird and as emotionally honest as The Color of Water. Told with insight and wit, Deacon King Kong demonstrates that love and faith live in all of us.



    By 74redvet
    The characters in this story are so rich and colorful. I’m going to read it again- enjoyed it so much! A must read!
  • Wonderful

    By Dr. Bridgeforth
    This is a very well done African American historical fiction book. It’s filed with cultural anecdotes!
  • Incredible

    By jbjbjb232323
    Best book I ever read read in a year. Great characters, amazing story and awesome dialogue.
  • A Book You Hate to See End

    By Eusno
    This is one of the best books I’ve read in a lifetime of reading. It succeeds on every level and the characters will stay with you after the last page is turned.
  • Beautifully Written

    By Mrs Nik Williams
    This was a beautifully written story. Well developed characters. Unexpected twist & turns. Sad realities portrayed in a light & humorous way. Loved it!
  • Great Story

    By Iphoneuser2188
    This is an amazing, comical story of life, struggle, and growth. The story gets better over time and by the end one falls in love with each character and their journey. At first, it appeared to be a slow read without much meaning. However, you soon learn that each chapter had a unique purpose in the story of Deacon King Kong.
  • Deacon King Kong

    By schefta
    Compelling story, interesting and well-developed characters, superb writing. Very creative way he pulled all the very diverse elements of the story together. Great mix of humor, sadness, and expressive affection for the human condition in all its sweetness and difficulty.
  • I love you my love

    By Jmherrerasf
    You are the best ever and you patience it’s fenomenal we work allways with
  • A jaunt through life

    By open book open mind
    This story teller describes every human condition finding the humorous in the absurdity of our foibles.
  • Indelible

    By A Fellow Bibliophile
    Deeply engrossing and satisfying storytelling with energetic yet poignant prose. Everyone once in awhile a book comes along that so captures the imagination that you mourn its ending. This is one of those books.