THE WHITE FACE by Carl Ruthven Offord

THE WHITE FACE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A novel which aims for -- and misses -- the Richard Wright Native Son market. Racial questions as tools for subversive activities are the forces at work in the story of Chris and his attempt to free himself of white domination. His escape from a Georgia plantation forces him to attack his white boss, and hunts him down when he reaches Harlem, where he'd hoped to be an equal of other independent Negroes. He finds Harlem ways harder than plantation ways; his wife works in the Bronx, their baby dies, and Chris buries her in a vacant lot. He is forced into hiding, and in his resentment is fertile ground for propaganda rousing of the Negroes against the Jews, personified for him by the family for which Stella works. Manny, rabble-rousing terrorist, feeds his hatred -- and, in attempting to follow orders, Chris attacks the son of Stella's employer. Stella refuses to accept the defense offered, but -- with intelligent help -- wins his freedom. He turns on her -- and is killed by his jailer. Unrelieved monotone of the underdog staying under through ignorance, bad treatment, unintelligent guidance. Not for the squeamish -- or for that matter, for any readers I can think of.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1943
Publisher: McBride