Losing Absalom

A novel by Alexs Pate, with an introduction by E. Ethelbert Miller

April 1, 2005 • 5.5 x 8.5 • 216 pages • 978-1-56689-170-1

An unforgettable portrait of an African American family from the author of Amistad—now back in print!

Sonny Goodman may have hopped the “modern underground railroad called education” and arrived in far-flung Minneapolis, but with the impending death of his father, North Philadelphia is calling him home. Quickly caught in the web that inner-city life has woven around his family’s dreams, Sonny must find a way to save the ones he loves. Named Best First Novel by the Black Caucus of the ALA, winner of the Minnesota Book Award, and compared to the work of James Baldwin, August Wilson, and James Agee, Alexs Pate’s debut novel “rings with a truth as immediate as body counts in the headlines, as enduring as a classic tragedy,” the San Francisco Chronicle says.

About the Author

Alexs D. Pate’s debut novel Losing Absalom received a Minnesota Book Award and was named Best First Novel by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. Additional novels include the New York Times best-seller Amistad, Finding Makeba, The Multicultiboho Sideshow, and West of Rehoboth. Pate, born in Philadelphia, now teaches at the University of Minnesota.

E. Ethelbert Miller, whose commentaries appear on NPR, is the former chair of the Humanities Council and a core faculty member of the Bennington Writing Seminars. The author of nine books of poetry, editor of four anthologies, and advisory editor for African American Review and Callaloo, he has been the director of the African American Resource Center at Howard University since 1974.


“Spellbinding. . . . A watershed tribute to the much-maligned African American male.” Dallas Morning News

“Astoundingly good.” Multicultural Review