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RED NOW AND LATERS is the coming of age tale of a spiritually gifted young boy in the 1980s Ti John balances being a normal teen all while accepting his stance in the supernatural Plagued with visions of former ancestors and the gift of healing that was passed down through several generations, he maintains as best he can to be a normal teen Guillory s debut novel, RED NOW AND LATERS is multilayered with elements of voodoo, Creole traditions and the vibe of 1980s Houston Very well written, humorous, and sometimes frightening, it was a great read. Enjoyed the history of Houston in this book Many personal ties to all Guillorys here so this was an interesting read for me. [Free] ♰ Red Now and Laters ♐ Go Deep Into The Heart Of S Texan Creole Culture In This Vivid, Visceral Novel About A Gifted Boy Who Comes Of Age At The Crossroads Of Privilege And Poverty, Life And DeathMeet Ti John, A Young Boy Growing Up In Houston In The S, The Decade Of Reaganomics, Disco Music, And The Candy Of Choice Red Now And Laters Raised In A Black Creole Family By A Voodoo Practicing Father And Strict Catholic Mother, He Is Blessed With A Special Gift Spiritual Healing On A Regular Basis, A Deceased Ancestor Visits Ti John, Announcing Himself With The Smell Of Smoke And Serving As A Spiritual GuideBut The Community Ti John Belongs To Isn T Easy It Turned From White And Middle Class To Black And Poor After The Oil Bubble Burst In The S, And The Flood Of Sealed Its Current Fate As A Ghetto Ti John Struggles To Remain An Ordinary Kid, But Even With A Rodeo Star Father He Idolizes, An Overprotective Mother Who Forbids Him To Play With The Neighborhood Hoodlums, And The Help Of Supernatural Guides, Nothing Can Shield Ti John From The Rough Side Of Inner City Life He Witnesses Violence And Death, Gets His Heart Broken By Girls, Feels The Anger Of His Own Embittered Father, Struggles To Live Up To His Mother S Middle Class Aspirations All While Trying To Become The Man He S Expected To Be Will Ti John Fall Prey To The Bad Side Of Life Or Will He Recognize And Hold On To The Good Multilayered And Multigenerational, This Tremendous Literary Debut Breathes New Life Into The Coming Of Age Novel Red Now And Laters Is A Poignant And Uniquely American Story, As Memorable And Flavorful As The Candy Itself It had me from the first line God s tears were brown Set in Houston s South Park neighbourhood in the 1980s, this unusual and engaging debut novel tells the coming of age story of young black Creole boy Ti John, growing up with his Catholic and aspirational mother and his cowboy Voodoo practicing father Ti John has to navigate through the tough streets of Houston and the harsh realities of poor urban life, whilst at the same time coming to terms with the visits of Nonc Sonnier, his dead ancestor and spiritual guide, for as well as being a child of his time it appears that Ti John has also inherited the power of healing The 1980s is set against post Civil War history from the 1870s to the 1940s and 50s, giving a glimpse into the Creole culture of Louisiana and the role magic, Voodoo and healing play within the Creole community, and which still pervade the urban ghetto.This is a fascinating and moving portrait of a community in transition, still rich in language, music, food and spiritual connections whilst at the same time struggling against the poverty, drug culture and violence of the new America With vivid characterisation and descriptions, this is a book that draws the reader in whilst at the same time being informative and often surprising Occasionally it reads like a text book explaining Creole history and culture, but on the whole Ti Johns thoughts and feelings seem authentic and the narrative drive carries the reader along I very much enjoyed it and it s a book that will stay in my memory.And the title A type of candy, which will no doubt be familiar to a US audience, but needs explanation in the UK. Excellent story I didn t want it to ever end Unfortunately the telling was a little uneven here and there characters show up, but then disappear as though they were never there, sometimes the action is glossed over and not fleshed out to the point where it s hard to tell what actually happened. A Gift Ti John is a young boy being raised in a Black Creole family His dad is a voodoo practicing Cowboy and his mom is a strict Catholic Ti John has a gift of healing he got from his father s side of the family Great responsibility comes with this gift Will it be beneficial or a hindrance Red Now and Laters starts out a little slow, but eventually picks up The book goes back and forth between the lives of Ti John and his father, which was confusing at first I thoroughly enjoyed the historical aspects shared and greatly appreciated the translations provided Despite my difficulties, I would recommend with caution.Reviewed by Jas Thanks to NetGalley and Atria Books for this advance copy of Red Now and Laters Red Now and Laters is the story of TiJohn Boudreaux He grows up in 1980s Houston in the ghetto TiJohn is part Creole with roots in Louisiana This is a novel of his struggle to survive and pull himself out of poverty while remaining true to himself and his family Marcus Guillory gives us a glimpse into Creole culture, witchcraft, racism, and religion while creating believable characters in this engaging coming of age novel. Red Now and Laters is a unique coming of age story that takes place in Houston, TX In the 1980 s, an era where disco music was still popular and Now and Laters were the candy of choice Raised in a Black Creole family by a voodoo practicing father and strict Catholic mother, Ti John s childhood is anything but ordinary Ti John has visions of long dead ancestors Ti John has a special gift that has been passed down from generation to generation to him from his father s side The gift of spiritual healing Ti John begins to get regular visits from Nonc Sonnier, his spirit guide and deceased ancestor on a pretty regular basis Ti John does his best to be a normal teenager, all while trying to come to terms with his place in the world and within the spiritual world Red Now and Laters takes you on a journey into unknown waters, through a generation steeped in tradition, creole culture and what it means to have two worlds colliding at the same time Red Now and Laters by Marcus J Guillory was a fantastic read Very informative and exciting all at the same time The author was able to put so many interesting facts into this story I learned so much about Creole history and traditions that I never knew It made the story really come alive within my mind The story gave me something to think about long after I finished reading and peaked my interest on quite a few topics My only complaint was that I did not understand some of the terminology Other than that I was pleasantly surprised and will be looking forward to reading titles from this author I would recommend this book to anyone looking for something different I commend Mr.GuiIlory for his originality.4.5 StarsBillie Jo My travels through magic realism have taken me to many parts of the world and to cultures and beliefs alien to my own In the case of Red Now and Laters I have been introduced to the world of Creole culture, to voodoo traiteurs traditional healers and to the black rodeo circuit stars The book moves in time from the post Civil War Louisina of the 1870s via the 1940s to the ghettos of 1980 s Houston Although the book centres on young Ti John and his need to balance the contrary demands of his parents and find his own path to adulthood, it also presents the stories of John Frenchy, Ti John s father, and of their ancestor the Burning Wood Man, Nonc Sonnier This gives the book huge depth and it is in the tradition of a number of magic realist books that follow several generations of a family and show the practice of magic being handed down I, who knew nothing of Louisiana Creole history, found this aspect of the book fascinating.Regular readers of this blog will know that I have interest in traditional healing and that I have reviewed several books that are about the subject, such as Bless Me Ultima and The Hummingbird s Daughter Ti John has inherited his father s and his ancestor s gift for healing and must reconcile that with his Catholic education and the streetwise lives of his friends In fact, as is so often the way with magic realism, the story is very much about reconciling different, apparently clashing, cultures Such a clash can be destructive and Ti John comes close to throwing away his chances, just as his father has done before him Or it can be for the good Will Ti John win through I enjoyed this book, even though at times I needed an interpreter luckily some of the creole phrases are translated as footnotes, but other elements, such as some of the ghetto slang, also needed explaining For my non American readers Now and Laters are a type of sweet, and function as a way of buying favours in Ti John s life But don t let the language put you off It s worth it.I received this book from the publisher via Netgalley in return for a fair review.This review first appeared on the Magic Realism Books Blog