Barry Jenkins and the Cast of ‘The Underground Railroad’ Talk About the Powerful Limited Series

Colson Whitehead’s novel The Underground Railroad is a necessary reading for the ways it transcends a violent history and navigates the magic of self determination and Black personhood. The novel, published in 2016 and winner of the Pulitzer Prize and National Book awards for fiction, follows the life of Cora and Caesar, two slaves in 19th century Georgia who take on the treacherous journey that is their freedom. The novel is bold, loving, and powerful, and with its serving as the basis for director Barry Jenkins’ (Moonlight, If Beale Street Could Talk) Amazon series by the same name, it has become necessary viewing.

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(Air)Bend it Like Gene Yang

Two-time National Book Award finalist Gene Luen Yang (@geneluenyang) joins Hard N.O.C. Life for a special episode discussing his career as an award-winning graphic novelist and his involvement in the Avatar/Korra comic universe.

Joining Keith (@the_real_chow) on the panel as well are The N.O.C.’s resident Avatar experts Julie Kang (@JulieKang) and Rodrigo Sanchez-Chavarria (@rscspokenword). As always, Hard N.O.C. Life is directed by the indomitable Nelson Wong (@aarisings).

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NOC Poetry: “Blade, The Daywalker”

Last year, my friend and mentor, the poet Tim Seibles, was a finalist for a National Book Award in poetry for the book Fast Animal.

In the book, Tim writes a series of poems from the perspective of Blade, the Marvel Comics vampire hunter made famous by a series of movies starring Wesley Snipes.

For Lit Week, I asked Tim if we could publish one of the “Blade” poems here on The Nerds of Color. After the jump, you’ll find the first poem in the book’s series of five. The other poems are titled “Blade, Historical,” “Blade, Unplugged,” “Blade, Unsympathetic,” and “Blade, Epiphany.” So, if you haven’t already, go out and get a copy of Fast Animal right now — and hell, all of Tim’s other books of poetry. You won’t be sorry.

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Review: Gene Luen Yang’s Boxers & Saints

Gene Luen Yang's BoxersGene Luen Yang’s Boxers & Saints are companion books telling two stories from opposite viewpoints. The stories are told through two characters, Little Bao and Four-Girl, based on the historical and violent Boxer Rebellion movement in China that started in the late 1800s in which pro-nationalists tried to rid China of foreigners and Christian missionaries. Boxers tells of the pro-nationalist point of view while Saints tells of the Chinese Christian point of view. Although each book is sold separately, they are intended to be companion pieces to each other, even so far as to have covers which can be matched together to form one larger cover.

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Boxers, Saints, and the NBA

Back in 2006, Gene Luen Yang made comic book history by being the first cartoonist to become a finalist for a National Book Award for American Born Chinese, one of the most prestigious literary honors in the country. Well, it looks like Lebron James isn’t the only two-time NBA champion since Yang has received another National Book Award nomination, this time for Boxers & Saints, his latest book from First Second.

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