(Photo from James McBride on Facebook.)

Oprah Winfrey announced her 85th book club pick today, Deacon King Kong by author James McBride. McBride is a National Book Award winner, father of three who lives between his two homes in New York City and Lambertville.

The novel Deacon King Kong is McBride’s first since his National Book Award-winning The Good Lord Bird (which is currently being adapted into a TV show starring Ethan Hawke). It takes places in 1969 and follows the life of a community in a Brooklyn housing project. The book begins with a moonshine-loving church deacon shooting a young drug dealer in broad daylight. The rest of the book investigates why it happened.

With a theme that’s particularly relevant with today’s current events, the story talks about how the best way to grow is to face change without fear and that even when we struggle with pain and trauma, we can always find shelter in one another.

According to Oprah, “In championing this book, I also champion all Black authors during the #BlackoutBestSellerList challenge. Readers are being called this week to buy two books by a black writer to lift their voice. And this one is a great choice!”

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