The Last Suspicious Holdout: Stories (Hardcover)
“Fiercely intelligent, warm in their own way, and absolutely absorbing. . . . Excellent excellent excellent.”—Roxane Gay
“Ladee Hubbard is a true original, and this book is a unique beauty.”—Mary Gaitskill
The critically acclaimed author of The Rib King returns with an eagerly anticipated collection of interlocking short stories including the title story written exclusively for this volume, that explore relationships between friends, family and strangers in a Black neighborhood over fifteen years.
The thirteen gripping tales In The Last Suspicious Holdout, the new story collection by award-winning author Ladee Hubbard, deftly chronicle poignant moments in the lives of an African American community located in a “sliver of southern suburbia.” Spanning from 1992 to 2007, the stories represent a period during which the Black middle-class expanded while stories of "welfare Queens," "crack babies," and "super predators" abounded in the media. In “False Cognates,” a formerly incarcerated attorney struggles with raising the tuition to keep his troubled son in an elite private school. In “There He Go,” a young girl whose mother moves constantly clings to a picture of the grandfather she doesn’t know but invents stories of his greatness. Characters spotlighted in one story reappear in another, providing a stunning testament to the enduring resilience of Black people as they navigate the “post-racial” period The Last Suspicious Holdout so vividly portrays.
Ladee Hubbard is the author of The Rib King and The Talented Ribkins, which received the 2018 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction. Her writing has appeared in Guernica, The Times Literary Supplement, Copper Nickel and Callaloo. Hubbard is a recipient of a Radcliffe Institute Fellowship, a Berlin Prize Fellowship, and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award. She has also received fellowships from MacDowell, Art Omi, the Sacatar Foundation, the Sustainable Arts Foundation, Hedgebrook, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Born in Massachusetts and raised in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Florida, Ladee Hubbard currently lives in New Orleans.
"Keenly observed, both in exterior details and interior psychological realities, Ladee Hubbard’s short stories capture the absurd, charming, brave, beautiful, and grotesque acts that are the pivot points of specific Black lives. With prose bone spare and elegant, she reveals the swagger required to keep seeing and to be seen." — Alice Randall, author of Black Bottom Saints
"I loved these interconnected stories. They are fiercely intelligent, warm in their own way, and absolutely absorbing. Hubbard has a deft sense of character and community and I really enjoyed piecing together the connections between the collection’s characters. Excellent excellent excellent." — Roxane Gay
“For sheer reading pleasure Ladee Hubbard’s original and wildly inventive novel is in a class by itself.” — Toni Morrison on The Talented Ribkins