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Sterling Anthony
Adult Fiction ANTHONY

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Anthony's ambitious debut thriller has as its psychological hook a legacy of racial violence reenacted by a crazed, confused killer. Isaac Shaw, a respected African-American Alabama mortician, tries but fails to escape his sordid past. In 1967 he impregnated a white teenage girl, "adopted" the son she bore seconds before her death and stuffed her body in someone else's casket. Moving to Detroit with his barren wife and new son, Eugene, Shaw establishes a funeral home empire and climbs the social ladder. Because Eugene looks white, he doesn't fit into the black community. He experiences "the intraracial backlash against fair-skinned blacks," and at the same time, a sense of guilt that he has escaped racial bigotry. In a desperate urge to claim his black heritage, he becomes an artist specializing in African-American images. He also becomes delusional, with a murderous mission. Meanwhile, Lt. "Bloody Mary" Cunningham, along with others of the Detroit Police's Homicide Squad, investigate a string of murders with a distinctive feature. The killer is targeting conservative African-Americans, and his victims hold an Oreo cookie in their hands. Those killed include a top-ranked black executive at a Japanese car company and a renowned Reaganite conservative leader with a special distaste for quotas. As the Motor City prepares for a tough mayoral election in which Isaac Shaw is a leading candidate, the cops don't realize how intimately their investigation is tangled with local politics. Anthony intersperses the convoluted family history of the Shaws with a more interesting profile of Cunningham, a well-rounded character with her own troubled childhood, strained marriage and battles with sexism on the job. He makes some perceptive comments about the complex dilemmas facing black Americans of all economic levels, who must make decisions regarding assimilation, representation and interracial relationships. Credibly depicting police procedures, this modest novel delivers enough keen analysis of race relations, social history and psychology to keep thriller fans reading to its bloody conclusion. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Anthony's first novel is a complex murder mystery … la Walter Mosley that explores race relations and politics in the deep South in the Sixties and in present-day Detroit. The victims are all blackÄstabbed repeatedly and left for dead with their fingers folded around a cookie, black on the outside and white on the inside. (LJ 10/15/99) (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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more titles about

main characters Isaac Shaw
Male
African American
Successful; mayoral candidate.
Mortician

Eugene Shaw
Male
African American
Fair-skinned.
Artist

"Bloody" Mary Cunningham
Female
African American
Police lieutenant



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