Naked Nonfiction with Rob Kirkpatrick: #2

Nonfiction Naked comes from the mouth of Rob Kirkpatrick,  a senior editor with Thomas Dunne Books at St. Martin's Press!

Hi again!  As my
friend Talia has reminded me now and then, it’s been a while since my last
post, so I’m pleased to be writing to you again—and hope to do so with more
frequency from now on!

In this second installment of “NN,” I’d like to tell you
about a new Thomas Dunne title called Acting
White: The Curious History of a Racial Slur
by political strategist,
commentator, and former White House advisor Ron Christie.  Christie provides a probing history on the
slur that, ever since the days of slavery and Reconstruction, has been directed
at African-Americans who dare strive for eloquent speech, academic achievement
and/or social success.  Originally used by
fearful whites who wanted to keep “uppity” blacks down, the label of “acting
white” became so entrenched in the African-American experience that it exists
to this day as self-defeating rhetoric used against blacks by other blacks who (to borrow a metaphor from the book) like crabs
in a barrel, seek to bring down others seeking to rise up the social ladder.  The author skillfully traces the two
prevailing narratives that have often competed against each other within black America.  Although Barack Obama’s historic election was
said by some to have signaled a “post-racial” United States, Christie reveals
how criticisms of the president as being “not black enough” reveal a prevailing
mindset in which self-appointed African-American leaders sometimes
short-circuit the significant opportunities for advancement for which blacks
have fought over the past century and a half. Acting White is a valuable look at racial identity in America, and it
will be a fine addition to any collections on Politics, Education, or
African-American Studies.  You can read
from Christie in his latest for the Huffington Post.

I also wanted to tell you about a new St. Martin’s Griffin paperback that is
essential for any sports collection: The
Man Watching: Anson Dorrance and the University of North Carolina Women’s
Soccer Dynasty
.  Dorrance is the
legendary women’s soccer coach who has won an amazing 21 national championships
in 29 years at the University
of North Carolina—so he’s
literally been winning championships before the NCAA even recognized women’s
soccer!  Dorrance has coached some of the
top American players ever, including Mia Hamm and Kristine Lilly, won the first
Women’s World Cup, earned both Women’s and
Men’s NCAA Soccer Coach of the Year honors. 
Tim Crothers, a New York Times
bestselling author and former Sports
senior writer with deep ties in the UNC community, has written
the definitive biography of Dorrance. The Tarheels are currently ranked #3 in
the RPI poll and poised for yet another title run, so don’t miss out on this
title, which will be of interest to all players, coaches, and soccer moms and

Until next time—when I hope to be able to let you know about
an exciting development that’s in the works. 
More details to come!

Rob Kirkpatrick

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