James McBride is best known for his memoir, The Color of Water, about being the son of an African American father and a white mother. His new novel, Deacon King Kong, takes place in 1969, in a Brooklyn housing project, similar to the one he grew up in., and involves the wide consequences of a shooting.
Journalist and musician James McBride. His new book, is "The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to his White Mother" (Riverhead) about his mother who was white and Jewish, but refused to admit her race. McBride's father was black. For years, McBride knew nothing about his mother's early life. It wasn't until he started work on the book, that she opened up to tell him that her father was a failed itinerant Orthodox rabbi in rural Virginia, a racist, and he sexually abused her.