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A Conversation with Ben Philippe and Cyrus McQueen

A Conversation with Ben Philippe and Cyrus McQueen

Thursday, June 24, 2021 - 07:00PM ET
Event Location: 

Cyrus McQueen (Tweeting Truth to Power) and Ben Philippe (Sure, I'll Be Your Black Friend) join Brookline Booksmith for an evening of conversation.

Books bought on the registration page will come with signed bookplates! Bookplates with Tweeting Truth to Power will also be personalized!


Tweeting Truth to Power

In Tweeting Truth to Power, Cyrus McQueen shares the personal and political journey he began in 2016, when he put aside the microphone to get serious about inequality. Exploring his own painful story alongside the nation’s past and present, McQueen offers a rich, nuanced look into America’s racial legacy. His insightful, layered analysis offers a unique context to current events and the movements they have ignited. Be it #BlackLivesMatter, #MeToo, or #TakeAKnee, Tweeting Truth to Power is a remarkable, real-time account of enduring an unprecedented time.

According to McQueen, the Trump presidency seemingly overnight ripped apart the incisive work of his predecessor and centuries of resistance, exposing the racial wounds of a country once on the mend. Today, as ghosts from America’s unresolved past haunt our present, McQueen asks us:

How far have we really come as a nation?

Cyrus McQueen is a comedian, cultural critic, and writer whose mirthful and insightful analysis of race and politics have resonated throughout the Twitterverse. His tweets pertaining to politics, pop culture and race have routinely gone viral. A Top 20 Finalist on Season 9 of NBC’s Last Comic Standing, McQueen has also been featured in the A24 film Obvious Child and on AXS TV’s Gotham Comedy Live. McQueen’s first book Tweeting Truth to Power chronicles his serious journey to address the hatred and division plaguing America.


Sure, I'll Be Your Black Friend

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a good white person of liberal leanings must be in want of a Black friend.

Ben Philippe’s candid memoir-in-essays chronicles a lifetime of being the Black friend (see also: foreign kid, boyfriend, coworker, student, teacher, roommate, enemy) in predominantly white spaces. He takes us through his immigrant childhood, from wanting nothing more than friends to sit with at lunch, to his awkward teenage years, to college in the age of Obama, and adulthood in the Trump administration.

Sure, I’ll Be Your Black Friend is a conversational take on topics both light and heavy, universal and deeply personal, which reveals incisive truths about the need for connection in all of us.

Ben Philippe is a New York-based writer and screenwriter. Born in Haiti and raised in Montreal, Canada, he has a Bachelor of Arts from Columbia University and an MFA from the Michener Center for Writers in Austin, Texas. He has written two young adult novels: Field Guide to the North American Teenager, winner of the 2020 William C. Morris Award, and Charming as a Verb. Sure, I’ll Be Your Black Friend is his first book of adult nonfiction.