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Black Buck (2021, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company) 4 stars

An unambitious twenty-two-year-old, Darren lives in a Bed-Stuy brownstone with his mother, who wants nothing …

A bitterly funny depiction of racism in white corporate America

5 stars

This is a satirical novel about race and America, using tech companies but specifically the sales side as as its lens. If I had to be cute about it I would say it's like Sorry to Bother You meets American Psycho.

It's genuinely funny and thought-provoking in parts, and made me cringe (in a bad way) in others. I think the author's pen is its sharpest when he's depicting startup life and its intersections with race. I've been the only non-white person in the room in many, many startup meetings and offices. Askaripour doesn't quite push things into the magical realist sci fi of Sorry to Bother You -- instead he takes things right up to the edge of absurdity, but not over it. Ultimately all the racism he depicts from the well-meaning and clueless to the consciously vindictive is stuff that I've witnessed first-hand. I have been in …