Monday, July 10, 2006

While I was in Los Angeles last week I finished up Damned If I Do, a book of short stories by Percival Everett. This is the second collection of his I've read and I definitely preferred these, probably because they are more recent and I've consistently thought that his later works are stronger (and funnier) than his earlier ones. The standout story is, of course, "The Appropriation of Cultures" which finds a young black man reclaiming the Confederate flag as a symbol of black power. It's not hard to read it as wish fulfillment on Everett's part, considering he was instrumental in getting the Confederate flag removed from the South Carolina capitol building. That's not to say the rest of the stories aren't any good, because they are. I enjoyed some more than others, but overall they were excellent and I'm glad I didn't give up on his short fiction after the somewhat disappointing first collection I read.

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