Spiegel & Grau
August 20, 2013
A rebellious boy’s journey through the wilds of urban America and the shrapnel of a self-destructing family — this is the riveting story of a generation told through one dazzlingly poetic new voice.
MK Asante was born in Zimbabwe to American parents: a mother who led the new nation’s dance company and a father who would soon become a revered pioneer in black studies. But things fell apart, and a decade later MK was in America, a teenager lost in a fog of drugs, sex, and violence on the streets of North Philadelphia. Now he was alone — his mother in a mental hospital, his father gone, his older brother locked up in a prison on the other side of the country — and forced to find his own way to survive physically, mentally, and spiritually, by any means necessary.
Buck is a powerful memoir of how a precocious kid educated himself through the most unconventional teachers — outlaws and eccentrics, rappers and mystic strangers, ghetto philosophers and strippers, and, eventually, an alternative school that transformed his life with a single blank sheet of paper. It’s a one-of-a-kind story about finding your purpose in life, and an inspiring tribute to the power of education, art, and love to heal and redeem us.