Initially shocked by his change in surroundings, in time Gunnar adapts and learns to thrive in his new city landscape. His heightened physical and mental skill set find both an outlet and a fan base as Gunnar becomes a discomfited basketball star and a reluctant spokesperson for race relations. Feeling no need for the appearances of fealty to any given group, Gunnar offers up the fiercest loyalty only to his coterie of friends and family. Any person or organization attempting to utilize Gunnar’s voice to promote their own agenda often finds themselves on the receiving end of a withering attack by Gunnar’s sharp intellect.
With a Man Booker Prize in his future for The Sellout (2016), the seeds of Paul Beatty’s literary success are clearly visible with his odd, deeply satisfying rookie foray into the world of fiction.