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Patches of Grey (English Edition) von [Pickering Jr., Roy L.]

Patches of Grey (English Edition) Kindle Edition

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Länge: 331 Seiten Word Wise: Aktiviert Verbesserter Schriftsatz: Aktiviert
PageFlip: Aktiviert Sprache: Englisch

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Tony Johnson is a studious young man planning to soon graduate from much more than high school. Although his zip code places him in a Bronx tenement pre "rise of Obama", his sights are set far beyond the trappings of a humble upbringing. Collegiate dreams combined with falling in love with a white classmate put him strongly at odds with his father. He incurs Lionel Johnson's wrath for the sins of ambition and daring to be with Janet Mitchell. Seeing unrealized goals reincarnated in the eyes of his eldest son remind Lionel of what once could have been, and of what went wrong. His own upbringing in a segregated town established a bitter, prejudiced outlook that is the only legacy he has to pass down to his children. When his job and role as primary breadwinner are lost, Lionel's authority erodes and he drowns disappointment one drink at a time. This affords Tony an opportunity to assert independence rather than allowing history to repeat itself and his fate to be set by chance and circumstance. Throughout the course of a tumultuous year, Tony comes to learn that the world is not as black and white as he and his father's opposing mindsets would suggest.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 730 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 331 Seiten
  • Verlag: M.U.D. House Books (23. Februar 2010)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B0039PU9X6
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Aktiviert
  • Verbesserter Schriftsatz: Aktiviert
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HASH(0x9ab8a750) von 5 Sternen RAW Rating: 4.5 - Somewhere Between Black and White Lies Patches of Grey 12. Oktober 2009
Von The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers - Veröffentlicht auf
Lionel Johnson vowed to take care of his family at all costs. Working laborious jobs and giving up his aspirations has not only weakened his resolve but has transformed him into a bitter man. A bitter man whose cynical views, although due to the harsh hand life has dealt him, are turning him into a tyrant and demoralizing his entire household. Lionel is desperate to spare his offspring the pain he's endured so he's laying out life's bitter truths in black and white. But life isn't always so clear cut; it's the shades of grey that his family needs to learn about the most. Over the time period the novel encases they'll learn just that.

Lionel's wrath always seems to be bestowing mostly upon his eldest son Tony. Tony is finishing up his senior year of high school and views college as not only as an escape from his domineering father, but as a way to escape his impoverished neighborhood. Lionel views Tony's dream of higher education as a snub towards himself and feels that Tony looks down on him for being nothing more than a laborer. Not only does Lionel think Tony is ashamed of who he is as a father, he thinks Tony is ashamed of being black, especially when Tony starts dating a Caucasian girl.

Tony's character is the primary voice throughout most of the novel. Tony provides a very poignant voice as he deals with feelings of resentment towards his father and also reels from the stigma associated with dating outside of his race. The younger brother, C.J., has no desire to escape the projects in which the Johnson family resides. He foolishly wants to rule them, which he thinks he can by do by joining a gang. Tanya, the middle child, finds her chastity is at stake while she ponders just how far she's willing to go for her first love. While Caren, the matriarch of the Johnson family, has to deal with her husband's fragile ego, which elevates to violent proportions once the company he works for goes on strike and he can no longer provide for his family.

Author Roy Pickering does an outstanding job allowing readers into the minds of each character within the Johnson household. Not only effectively capturing their hopes and dreams, but their fears as well. Fears that sometimes push them into making foolish decisions and even while doing so Mr. Pickering's writing style will cause readers to empathize with the characters' actions, no matter how wrong. But greater than that, PATCHES OF GREY will actually convince readers there are more ways to deal with life's struggles than just black or white, compromise can be found just within the patches of grey.

Reviewed by Delonya Conyers
for RAWSISTAZ Reviewers
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HASH(0x9ae00714) von 5 Sternen The Truth Can Be Ignored, But Cannot Be Unlearned 18. Dezember 2011
Von OOSA Online Book Club - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition
"Patches of Grey" is a narrative that focuses on the lives of members of the Johnson family. Tony is the oldest son with dreams of college and a white picket fence life. He desires to escape from his current life of abuse and poverty. However, his younger brother, CJ, believes that Tony is also seeking to escape who he is....a black man in America. Lionel, Tony's father, knows firsthand what it feels like to have dreams denied. He wants his son to not have to face the same fate, so he uses abuse as a way to make Tony see the truth. At the center of Lionel's pain is his own failed relationship with his brother, Manny, who decided to live the dream by turning his back on his family. Twenty-five years later, Manny realizes that his dream has become a nightmare.

"Patches of Grey" is a novel about truth, love, family and sacrifice. It is also about the choices that many black men face daily as they try to survive in America. From gang violence to dating across the color lines, Pickering weaves a complex story of hope, forgiveness, love and dreams deferred. I found myself wondering how I would have reacted in certain situations as the author introduced them in the novel. It also made me question some of the truths I have accepted regarding race relations in America.

Although this novel was an advance reader copy (ARC), I was very distracted by the editing issues. There were pages with "white-out" that had words handwritten in. Also, there were many pages where editing had been missed completely. In the beginning, I was so distracted by these issues that I found it very difficult to even read the book. However, the plot began to pick up and so I was able to overlook those errors enough to read the book. "Patches of Grey" would easily be a 5-star read if the editing issues had been better addressed. I would advise the author in the future to not submit an advanced copy in this state. Errors are expected in an ARC, or uncorrected proof, but the condition of this ARC simply proved too distracting.
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HASH(0x9aaa6e7c) von 5 Sternen Patches Of Grey - A Coming Of Age Novel For The Current Generation 15. Juli 2009
Von Terin Miller - Veröffentlicht auf
Patches of Grey

With "Patches of Grey," Roy L. Pickering's debut novel, coming of age is as difficult as it's always been - except, rather than rant against the alienating conformity and rampant consumerism of earlier generations, the characters must choose a path between soul-crushing disappointments and the violence of surviving in "the projects" and the hopes and dreams youthful confidence and lack of experience generate when one looks outside one's own neighborhood.

And always, because of birth, because of melanin pigmentation in the skin, that dasher of dreams and killer of youth, prejudice lurks to slap hard those who aspire and seems to make life easy for those who don't have to.

This novel could introduce readers early to the essence of one of life's truisms - that living is difficult enough, especially for teenagers, without others trying to make it more difficult for anyone.

Each generation absorbs as much as rejects the teachings of its parents - good and bad - and chooses to find truth lying somewhere in the "Patches of Grey." Or dies believing itself to be whatever it's labeled as.

I recommend this book. In fact, I'd recommend it be on every junior or senior level high school reading list. Maybe earlier. Maybe it can catch the next generation before it gets to the stage of some of the characters in the book.
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HASH(0x9ae0066c) von 5 Sternen Patches of Grey 10. September 2009
Von SW Author - Veröffentlicht auf
Verifizierter Kauf
Patches of Grey follows the difficulties of the Johnson family as they struggle to find answers in life. The mother Caren is an optimistic woman, "There are no struggles too difficult for God's love to guide us through." Her husband, Lionel, is embittered and can't find a job to support his family, "He chooses to complain about what hasn't been handed to him." Their 15 year old son CJ lives for his gang, then tries to escape. Their daughter is confused and feels pressure from her boyfriend.
But the story centers around their son Tony. Tony is intelligent with a bright future. He is college bound. He falls in love with a caucasian girl, Janet, whose parents are racists with ridiculous stereotpical ideas of African-Americans. The story revolves around their relationship and the problems they experience as an inter-racial couple.
Pickering's descriptions and metaphors are vivid. "Wide spreading ripples can reach calm waters far removed from where a stone has been tossed."
Pickering asks the question, "When searching for your worth on this planet, is it love or is it power that will accomplish this for you?"
The language is often gritty and not for the faint-hearted.
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HASH(0x9ae00744) von 5 Sternen Patches of Perfection 18. April 2011
Von Read In Colour - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
In a story that at times reminded me of Matty Rich's Straight Out of Brooklyn, Roy L. Pickering, Jr. deftly weaves a coming of age tale of Tony Johnson in Patches of Grey. And while Pickering could have taken the easy way out and strictly focused on one main character, he takes the time to tell not only Tony's story, but that of his siblings and parents as well, each as fascinating as Tony's.

Tony is every inner city youth that dreams of making it out, except he doesn't plan to do it by being a rapper or athlete. He dreams of going to college. Normally you would expect one's parents to be supportive of that kind of dream, but his father's defeatist attitude weighs heavily upon Tony's shoulders.

Even as Tony walks the straight and narrow, his younger brother CJ is on the path to destruction. Completely unimpressed with school and what it offers, CJ belongs to a gang. Somewhere in the middle is their sister Tanya. At the age of 16, she's obsessed with losing her virginity.

I was intrigued with the fact that the younger brother was the wayward one. In most books, the older sibling's bad habits lead to the younger sibling's desire to do better. So it was interesting to see the roles reversed. On the other hand, it could have been that the parents had more time and were less stressed when raising Tony (and his sister Tanya) and by the time CJ came along, he was left to raise himself.

It's also interesting to note the differences between the relationships that their father shared with Tanya and the boys. While Tony's relationship with his father is antagonistic at best, Tanya's relationship with him had me wondering if I was reading about a completely different man. No, really. It took me a minute to realize that this belligerent man who berated his oldest child was the same man that coddled his daughter and offered her words of encouragement.

Through Lionel's back story, the reader finds out why he's so hard on his son and how he came to be in the situation he's in. Undoubtedly, his perceived failures shape the way that he treats Tony. And while he believes that he's preparing him for the real world and teaching him life lessons, he's slowly losing his son's respect and love.

Aptly named Patches of Grey, Pickering proves that, indeed, life is rarely black or white.

What did you like about this book?
As I mentioned before, I love that everyone in the family has a story to tell and is actually allowed to tell it.

What didn't you like about this book?
Not a thing. My biggest regret is that it took me so long to move it up on my "to be read" list.

What could the author do to improve this book?
Can't think of a thing.
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