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“Bang!” by Sharon Flake


Mann is a young teenager growing up in a poor, often violent inner-city neighborhood. When his little brother is killed by gunfire, Mann begins to lose his way, becoming abusive, skipping school, and turning more frequently to drugs to ease his grief. Drawing upon African rituals, Mann's father abandons Mann and his cousin, Kee-Lee, in the countryside — twice! — in an effort to force Mann to find his own way in the world. Instead, Mann ends up in disastrous circumstances. This is a difficult, not very satisfying read, marred by bizarre episodes of truly gross-out humor. Lots of difficult issues are addressed, but there's no real conclusion to any of them.

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Posted by on May 31, 2006 in Uncategorized


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