“In my native village … the is a song we always sing … it’s called ‘The Click Song’ by the English because they cannot say !CLICK !CLOCK !CWLUNG” —Miriam Mekeba
In this fiercely authentic tale from the author of The Man Who Cried I Am, a gifted novelist confronts the powerfully entrenched, profit-motivated forces of corporate racism
When his military service ends at the close of World War II—a period that will continue to haunt him throughout his life—Cato Douglass resolves to pursue a writing career and follows his dream to New York City. Soon, his first novel is published, and it appears his dream has been fulfilled, enabling him to travel the world, fall in love, marry, and start a family. But despite possessing a talent that shines brighter than that of many of his literary contemporaries, Cato discovers that he is trapped within a racist system. Only a handful of black writers receive the support of white editors and critics, and because Cato’s work pushes the boundaries set by the publishing industry, he is doomed to a life of obscurity.
The Chicago Sun-Times proclaimed !Click Song “a major novel by one of America’s finest living writers.” Winner of the 1983 American Book Award, John A. Williams’s enthralling chronicle of a writer’s lifelong struggle to matter is a blistering tale of art, industry, family, and race.