This was on everyone’s bookshelf in DC, and I’m very late to the party.
I did enjoy it quite a bit. Coates’s writing is skillful and had an excellent flow, and I got nostalgic reading about his love of Howard University, one of DC’s excellent universities. The entire time I lived in DC, I was never more than a mile or two away from Howard, and its excellence and impact on the city felt stronger than any of the other universities, which seemed to actively distance themselves from the city itself.
Like Streetfight, this was a really quick read and a book that I’ll probably return to, in order to experience it again with a slightly deeper understanding of Coates himself. I think most of all I liked the central device of the storytelling: the idea of talking to his son was such a useful and effective way to focus the topics and sharpen his emotional point.