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All Joe Knight: A Novel
(Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read)

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Published:
Grove Atlantic 2016
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Description
"Kevin Morris goes for a slam dunk in his debut novel" about the undoing of an American Dreamer in the Philly suburbs (Vanity Fair Hot Type).

1961. Outside Philadelphia, a soon-to-be father runs into a telephone pole while driving drunk; nine months later, his widow dies in a smashed-up T-Bird. From the start, the orphaned Joe Knight is a blank slate. Taken in by a kindly aunt in a tough-skinned suburb, Joe finds his family in high school with the Fallcrest basketball team.

Fast-forward thirty years. Joe is divorced with a daughter and certain he's unfit for love. Ever since selling the ad firm he built from the ground up for millions, he's been wiling away his time at strip clubs to quiet his mind. Then Chris Scully, former Fallcrest teammate-turned DA, tips him off to a criminal probe into the buyout that got Joe rich years ago—a deal he shared with every member of the basketball team, except for Scully. As Joe's possible transgressions unreel, he is forced to face the disillusionment inside himself and a secret that has haunted him for decades.

A "remarkable and agonizing . . . incendiary look at modern life" (Esquire), All Joe Knight features "an anti-hero for our times . . . John Updike's Rabbit Angstrom revised for the Trump era—more profane and straight-talking" (USA Today, 3/4 stars), a man who achieved the American Dream and is now scrambling to survive it.
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
12/06/2016
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780802189677
ASIN:
B01MXOP51F
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Kevin Morris. (2016). All Joe Knight: A Novel. Grove Atlantic.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Kevin Morris. 2016. All Joe Knight: A Novel. Grove Atlantic.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Kevin Morris, All Joe Knight: A Novel. Grove Atlantic, 2016.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Kevin Morris. All Joe Knight: A Novel. Grove Atlantic, 2016. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
Jun 12, 2018 15:15:00
Date Updated:
Dec 06, 2020 02:40:29
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      • bioText: Kevin Morris has written for The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times and Filmmaker Magazine. He is the Co-producer of the Tony Award–winning Broadway musical, "The Book of Mormon," and producer of the classic documentary film, "Hands on a Hardbody." He lives with his wife and two children in Los Angeles. This is his first collection of fiction.
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shortDescription
"Kevin Morris goes for a slam dunk in his debut novel" about the undoing of an American Dreamer in the Philly suburbs (Vanity Fair Hot Type).

1961. Outside Philadelphia, a soon-to-be father runs into a telephone pole while driving drunk; nine months later, his widow dies in a smashed-up T-Bird. From the start, the orphaned Joe Knight is a blank slate. Taken in by a kindly aunt in a tough-skinned suburb, Joe finds his family in high school with the Fallcrest basketball team.

Fast-forward thirty years. Joe is divorced with a daughter and certain he's unfit for love. Ever since selling the ad firm he built from the ground up for millions, he's been wiling away his time at strip clubs to quiet his mind. Then Chris Scully, former Fallcrest teammate-turned DA, tips him off to a criminal probe into the buyout that got Joe rich years ago—a deal he shared with every member of the basketball team, except for Scully. As Joe's possible...
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title
All Joe Knight
fullDescription
"Kevin Morris goes for a slam dunk in his debut novel" about the undoing of an American Dreamer in the Philly suburbs (Vanity Fair Hot Type).

1961. Outside Philadelphia, a soon-to-be father runs into a telephone pole while driving drunk; nine months later, his widow dies in a smashed-up T-Bird. From the start, the orphaned Joe Knight is a blank slate. Taken in by a kindly aunt in a tough-skinned suburb, Joe finds his family in high school with the Fallcrest basketball team.

Fast-forward thirty years. Joe is divorced with a daughter and certain he's unfit for love. Ever since selling the ad firm he built from the ground up for millions, he's been wiling away his time at strip clubs to quiet his mind. Then Chris Scully, former Fallcrest teammate-turned DA, tips him off to a criminal probe into the buyout that got Joe rich years ago—a deal he shared with every member of the basketball team, except for Scully. As Joe's possible transgressions unreel, he is forced to face the disillusionment inside himself and a secret that has haunted him for decades.

A "remarkable and agonizing . . . incendiary look at modern life" (Esquire), All Joe Knight features "an anti-hero for our times . . . John Updike's Rabbit Angstrom revised for the Trump era—more profane and straight-talking" (USA Today, 3/4 stars), a man who achieved the American Dream and is now scrambling to survive it.
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reviews
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        September 19, 2016
        Morris’s debut novel (following the story collection White Man’s Problems) explores a narcissist’s search for meaning in a world that he treats with disdain. Joe Knight never met his father—who “ran into a telephone pole” ending a “nonstop bender” that began when his wife told him she was pregnant—and was orphaned at six months when his mother’s body was found with another man in a “smashed-up T-bird.” He is raised by his aunt Dottie in the middle-class suburbs of Philadelphia. Joe is a member of the 1977–78 Fallcrest High School basketball team, which offers him a sense of belonging and a glimmer of the greatness that he feels he is destined for, despite his rocky start. (“I’ll light you up all night long. All Knight Long,” the narrator says.) Decades later, Joe is divorced with a daughter and living alone in Philadelphia. He’s “made enough money” from the sale of his advertising agency and “cut off enough strings that I don’t have to do anything and I like it.” When his old teammate Chris Scully—a starter to Joe’s bench position—now the district attorney of Dover County, tips Joe off that federal prosecutors are investigating the sale of his company to a French conglomerate, a deal that Joe cut most of his old teammates in on, it pushes Joe to reckon with his relationships. Pennsylvania and basketball are Updike territory, and one can read this story as homage (Joe’s ex is named Janice, like Rabbit Angstrom’s wife). Even as an echo of Rabbit’s mid-century angst, Morris’s novel deftly shows that the frustrations of a stunted middle-aged man are evocative terrain. Agent: Jane von Mehren, Zachary Shuster Harmsworth

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        With his marriage over and his business affairs gone murky, the narrator of this uneven debut has only the memory of his glory days on the basketball court as a youth.In a story that bounces around like an errant foul shot, Joe Knight delivers alternating sections about life in the 1970s as a teen formed by TV, basketball, and music and as an adult adrift. There are recurring interludes on William Penn, the early history of Philadelphia, where the story is set, and brick-making as well as repeated references to Walt Whitman and the Band. "I might be scattered, but that's okay," Joe says early on. For a time he focuses on basketball, and fans of the sport will enjoy what Morris (White Man's Problems, 2014) calls "the perfect harmonic convergence" of good players melding into a great high school team. The sections on Joe's rise after college from negligible jobs to founding an ad firm that quickly gets hot and leads to an eight-figure buyout hum along at a snappy pace. All is not blue sky, though. As a boy, Joe witnessed something in a church that he holds secret for years. The wealthy adult sours on marriage, and divorce finds him compulsively bedding strippers (the sex scenes aren't subtle). A self-loathing loner, Joe seems to have left any joy in life on the hardwood courts of high school. When a former teammate tips him to a criminal probe into the buyout, the trouble threatens to entangle the friends of his youth (and the payoff may even help explain those recurring references). The tension surrounding the investigation and legal matters is well-handled, a credit perhaps to the author's day job as an entertainment lawyer. A dark and busy rise-and-fall tale, the book doesn't gel quite as well its young hoopsters. COPYRIGHT(1) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        July 1, 2016

        Morris made his name in the entertainment industry as a lawyer, writer, and producer, but he made his name in the literary world with 2014's highly praised story collection White Man's Problems. This debut novel features Joe Knight, orphaned as a baby and raised by an aunt on the rough side of 1960s Philadelphia, who finds the sense of belonging he's always wanted with his high school basketball team. Years later, a deal he cut that helped him and his teammates get rich will come back to haunt him.

        Copyright 2016 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        Starred review from December 1, 2016

        Morris, author of the warmly received story collection White Man's Problems and coproducer of the Tony Award-winning musical The Book of Mormon, here offers an engaging debut novel. Joe Knight, who narrates in a gritty, defiant, sardonic voice that's one of the work's greatest strengths, was orphaned as a baby and raised by an aunt in a rough 1960s Philadelphia neighborhood. He finds a true sense of belonging on his high school basketball team, and in late middle age, having made and lost a fortune and recently separated from his wife and daughter, is still cutting deals for his old teammates. Now, though, he learns that one of his deals is being investigated. Walt Whitman is the presiding spirit here, cited strategically throughout, and the novel can be read as an updated, plaintive, dystopian Song of Myself. As he's had his full share of successes, Joe Knight can sing about himself and America, but he sings mostly about the loneliness and disillusionment he's brought on himself through bad choices, self-pity, and a sense of entitlement. VERDICT A moving portrait of a lost soul in modern America, for all readers of literary fiction. [See Prepub Alert, 6/13/16.]--Patrick Sullivan, Manchester Community Coll., CT

        Copyright 2016 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

subtitle
A Novel
popularity
45
publisher
Grove Atlantic
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