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Ordinary White Boy, The

Clarke, Brock

169 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0151008108 / ISBN 13: 9780151008100
Published by Harcourt, New York, 2001
Condition: Very Good Hardcover
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Monroe Street Books
Middlebury, VT, U.S.A.

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About this Item

257 pages, SIGNED BY AUTHOR on title page. Spotless and tight copy. Record # 456214. Bookseller Inventory # 456214

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Ordinary White Boy, The

Publisher: Harcourt, New York

Publication Date: 2001

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

Endearing, infuriating, and utterly irresistible, Lamar Kerry is a twenty-seven-year-old Ordinary White Boy. He wears khaki pants, work boots, and flannel shirts; dances like Mick Jagger when he dances at all (only when drunk); and when in doubt, he reaches for a beer. His father sent him to college expecting him to become extraordinary, but Lamar returned home a bright, cocky, over-educated, middle-class boy adrift in a depressed, comatose, working-class town.
Now the town's only Hispanic is missing and feared dead, Lamar's mother is enfeebled by MS, and both his girlfriend and his father are tired of being disappointed in him. Can Lamar turn himself into a professor of "racist remediation" and save the soul of his town? Can he stop hiding out in his ordinariness and do what is right by his father, his mother, his girlfriend, and himself? Can this ordinary white boy finally become a man?
With a character both unforgettably unique yet universal, in a voice both tender and biting, Clarke mixes subtle social criticism with laugh-out-loud funny observations and introduces to literature the ordinary white boy in all of us.

Review:

Brock Clarke's debut novel, The Ordinary White Boy, is a familiar story of a young man finding comfort with himself amidst an average life of work, relationships, and occasional hardships. Lamar Carney, in his khaki pants and flannel shirts, lets life happen to him, always saying he would rather be doing nothing than something.

The truth is that I don't want to be special... Being special can make you think that you are something you're not: it can make you believe, say, that you live in a city when in reality you live in a shrinking little mill town. Being special can also make you believe that you're too important to go out and cover emergency school-board meetings for forty dollars a pop, plus mileage.

Throughout most of the novel, Lamar questions conventional society, even though he is destined to conform to it. Still, Clarke has done wonders subtly producing a special sort of character, even though Lamar might claim otherwise. A refreshing, casual read. --Yvonne Schindler

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We have an open shop. Hours are: 9AM to 6PM Monday-Saturday and 11AM to 6 PM Sundays. The shop is located at 1485 Route 7 North, 2 miles north of downtown Middlebury, VT. We are located at Paquette self-storage across from Euclide Quenell Farm (It's Vermont!) and have over 150,000 books. Some have said we're the best used book store in the State and Book Lover's Guide has listed us as a "must see." So if you're out our way, please stop in.(When weather VERY bad, please call ahead. We do close during snow storms, etc.)

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Monroe Street Books. Owners: Richard and Flanzy Chodkowski. Mailing address: Monroe Street Books, 70 Monroe Street, Middlebury, Vermont 05753 USA. Store Located at: 1485 Route 7 North, Middlebury, Vermont 05753 USA. Phone: 1-802-398-2200 Email: books@monroestreetbooks.com
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