We Cast a Shadow

We Cast a Shadow

A bold, provocative debut for fans of Get Out and Paul Beatty's The Sellout , about a father who will do anything to protect his son--even if it means turning him white.

How far would you go to protect your child?

Our narrator faces an impossible decision. Like any father, he just wants the best for his son Nigel, a biracial boy whose black birthmark is growing larger by the day. In this near-future society plagued by resurgent racism, segregation, and expanding private prisons, our narrator knows Nigel might not survive. Having watched the world take away his own father, he is determined to stop history from repeating itself.

There is one potential solution: a new experimental medical procedure that promises to save lives by turning people white. But in order to afford Nigel's whiteness operation, our narrator must make partner as one of the few Black associates at his law firm, jumping through a series of increasingly surreal hoops--from diversity committees to plantation tours to equality activist groups--in an urgent quest to protect his son.

This electrifying, suspenseful novel is at once a razor-sharp satire of surviving racism in America and a profoundly moving family story. Writing in the tradition of Ralph Ellison and Franz Kafka, Maurice Carlos Ruffin fearlessly shines a light on the violence we inherit, and on the desperate things we do for the ones we love.

Title:We Cast a Shadow
ISBN:9780525509066
Format Type:

About Maurice Carlos Ruffin


    We Cast a Shadow Reviews

  • Roxane

    Maurice Carlos Ruffin’s debut novel, We Cast A Shadow, is an incisive and necessary work of brilliant satire. Set in the post-post-racial South, We Cast a Shadow tells the story of a man, one of the...

  • (Bern) Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas

    3.75 thought-provoking stars for this racially charged work of satirical fiction! Set in a satirical future south, We Cast a Shadow tells the racially fueled dystopian story of a black man desperate t...

  • Esil

    3+ starsWe Cast a Shadow is a dystopian satire — if there is such a genre. Intellectually, I thought it was brilliant. But I must admit that I didn’t love reading it. It was a question of genre an...

  • Lark Benobi

    I don't know if it's fair to compare anything at all to Invisible Man but I can't think of another novel that includes the same mix of high satire and terrifying truth as does this debut from Maurice ...

  • OutlawPoet

    As I began to write this review, I asked myself: how do I write this review in such a way that I don’t offend white people? And then the irony of that question hit me like a punch in the gut.In We C...

  • Michelle

    Release date January 29th!We Cast a Shadow is a debut novel by Maurice Carlos Ruffin that takes place in the near future. Still plagued by racial discrimination blacks now have the option to achieve u...

  • Beverly

    A Necessary Read!A brilliantly unsettling tale set in the not-so-distance future southern state, a Black father seeks to ensure that his biracial son lives his life to his fullest potential, which me...

  • Tad Bartlett

    (Spoiler-free, as much as possible)Maurice Ruffin performs writer magic in We Cast a Shadow. As the book opens, the reader is settled comfortably into a clever and biting satirical world where race pl...

  • Kasa Cotugno

    This is the latest novel to explain and deal with the issue of racism in America employing fantasy, magic realism, dystopian concepts, call it what you will. From Underground Railway, to White Tears, ...

  • jo

    in the new york times Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah does a great job of summarizing this book, so i refer you to his review for a sense of what this novel is about. for me, reading this novel felt like hav...