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Racially Charged Black Spy Novel Set For Release


RACIALLY CHARGED BLACK SPY NOVEL SET FOR RELEASE

— Advance images online of the novel’s cover featuring an African American man and the title “Spook” raised concern among Black viewers —


Bookcover

Los Angeles, CA (BlackNews.com) — Newly formed independent publisher Brooklyn Apache Press, a company devoted to creating cross-media titles for a multicultural audience they feel is the more accurate depiction of America today than what is currently portrayed in books, TV and movies, is set to release a novel of their first diverse title Spook: Confessions of a Psychic Spy on November 17th, 2014.

Spook, a novel about an African American remote viewer for the CIA during the darkest days of the Cold War and the dawn of the Civil Rights movement, is the first in a series of books that will take the character through the Kennedy assassinations, the shooting of Martin Luther King, the Birmingham riots, Vietnam and other grand historical events.

Spook was written by Brooklyn Apache owner and president Carlton Holder, who is also a Los Angeles screenwriter who has struggled with the industry’s lack of interest in diversity in entertainment. According to the 2014 Hollywood Diversity Report, despite minorities making up more than 36 percent of the U.S. population, out of 172 movies only 11 percent of the films had a minority lead and more than half the films had casts that were 10 percent minority or less. Spook “When I decided to finally write this novel – and several people in Hollywood advised me not to – I knew it was going to be controversial. I wanted a title that reflected the book’s nature. Spook, which is the slang term for a spy and the derogatory slang term for a Black person, was my intended double entendre. This isn’t just a spy thriller. It’s social commentary. The duality of the title is also reflective of the main character John, who ironically enjoys more freedoms in the European countries he is spying in, than in America where he has to sit in the back of the bus or eat at a diner with no restroom for Coloreds,” stated Holder. “Once I explained this to concerned members of the Black community, they understood immediately that I’m facing these issues head on without flinching or sugar-coating.”

The relevance of the racial themes in Spook can be seen in headlines across America today where young Black men are being killed by law enforcement officials such as in the Michael Brown case in Ferguson, Missouri. Holder added, “Anyone who believes African Americans won their civil rights and now have as much opportunity as anyone else in America, is mistaken.”

Holder is already shopping a screenplay adaptation of Spook to Hollywood. Despite interest, industry professionals are gun-shy. Holder concluded, “Hollywood executives will tell you Black films don’t typically do well internationally. My answer is Spook will by virtue of its international locales, historical subject matter and conspiratorial themes. As a child growing up reading comic books and science fiction and fantasy novels, I could find no one in those pages that looked like me or reflected the experiences I was going through growing up poor and Black in a ghetto in Brooklyn? I can’t help but think that this lack of representation in entertainment has led to a feeling of disenfranchisement in African Americans. Considering census projections that by 2042, minorities will constitute the majority of Americans, this has to change.”

For more details about Spook or Brooklyn Apache Press, visit www.brooklynapachepress.com

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