Oreo

Fran Ross

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12 July 2018
9781529002379
488 minutes
Robin Miles
Synopsis

With an introduction by the Man Booker Prize-winning author of A Brief History of Seven Killings, Marlon James

'Oreo's satire on racial identity reads like a story for our times . . . Could Oreo be this year's Stoner? Observer

‘A rollicking little masterpiece . . . one of the most delightful, hilarious, intelligent novels I’ve stumbled across in recent years’ Paul Auster

Oreo has been raised by her maternal grandparents in Philadelphia. Her black mother tours with a theatrical troupe, and her Jewish deadbeat dad disappeared when she was an infant, leaving behind a mysterious note. Oreo’s quest is to find her father, and discover the secret of her birth.

What ensues in Fran Ross's opus is a playful, modernized parody of the classical odyssey of Theseus with a feminist twist, immersed in seventies pop culture, and mixing standard English, black vernacular, and Yiddish with wisecracking aplomb.

Oreo, our young hero, navigates the labyrinth of sound studios and brothels and subway tunnels in Manhattan, seeking to claim her birthright while unwittingly experiencing and triggering a mythic journey of self-discovery like no other.

What a rollicking little masterpiece this book is, truly one of the most delightful, hilarious, intelligent novels I've stumbled across in recent years, a wholly original work . . . I must have laughed out loud a hundred times, and it's a short book, just over 200 pages, which averages out to one booming gut-laugh every other page

Paul Auster, Man Booker Prize-shortlisted author of 4 3 2 1

I'm usually very slow to come around to things . . . but I couldn't believe Fran Ross's hilarious 1974 novel Oreo hadn't been on my cultural radar

Paul Beatty, Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sellout

Wild, satirical and pathbreaking . . . flat-out fearless and funny and sexy and sublime . . . a nonstop outbound flight to a certain kind of readerly bliss. It may have been first published more than forty years ago, but its time is now

New York Times