Automotive Holiday Deals Books Holiday Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_plcc_6M_fly_beacon Black Friday egg_2015 Fire TV Stick Subscribe & Save Martha Stewart American Made Find the Best Purina Pro Plan for Your Pet Amazon Gift Card Offer minions minions minions  Amazon Echo Starting at $84.99 Kindle Black Friday Deals BestoftheYear Outdoors Gift Guide on HTL
The White Boy Shuffle: A Novel and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $16.00
  • Save: $3.27 (20%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
The White Boy Shuffle: A ... has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Worn edges and covers and may have small creases. Good. Eligible for FREE Super Saving Shipping! Fast Amazon shipping plus a hassle free return policy means your satisfaction is guaranteed! Good readable copy. Otherwise item is in good condition. Fast shipping from the amazon warehouse!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

The White Boy Shuffle: A Novel Paperback – May 4, 2001

66 customer reviews

See all 14 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$3.98 $0.01
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"

Fortune Smiles
2015 National Book Awards - Fiction Winner
Get your copy of this year's National Book Award winner for fiction, "Fortune Smiles" by Adam Johnson. Hardcover | Kindle book | See more winners
$12.73 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • The White Boy Shuffle: A Novel
  • +
  • The Sellout: A Novel
Total price: $29.61
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews Review

Poet Paul Beatty’s (Big Bank Take Little Bank) first novel is a colorful situation comedy about an unusual African-American's search for his identity. Set within a dramatically caricatured ethnic and cultural landscape, Gunnar Kaufman is a street poet and basketball prodigy raised in predominantly white Santa Monica, whose father is a member of the LAPD. The Kaufmans come from a hilarious family line of groveling Uncle Toms, and as Gunnar faces varying degrees of racism, he struggles between falling into step with the family tradition or forging his own way. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Stylistically, this first novel is a tribute to one of Beatty's teachers, Allen Ginsberg. An author of two volumes of verse who has often been proclaimed the poet laureate of Generation X, Beatty effectively uses the Beat influence to amplify the voice of the hip-hop generation. Gunnar Kaufman, the protagonist of this coming-of-age story, earned his streetwise education in West Los Angeles, not unlike the author. Gunnar is just trying to be Gunnar?an intelligent, sensitive young African American who survives great tribulations while sparing no one his enormous wit. He is clearly a product of our times, and many readers will enjoy his piercing, often hilarious observations on contemporary society. It will be interesting to see what else this talented writer produces in the ensuing years. Meanwhile, this work will ring especially true to those under 35.
-?Susan M. Olcott, Columbus Metropolitan Lib., Ohio
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Hero Quick Promo
Holiday Deals in Kindle Books
Save up to 85% on more than 1,000 Kindle Books. These deals are valid until November 30, 2015. Learn more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; 2nd edition (May 4, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031228019X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312280192
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,572 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Franklyn on January 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
Paul Beatty's "White Boy Shuffle" is a scathingly irreverent look at modern day African-American "street" culture, and some of it's more ludicrous characteristics. Sort of an anti "Boyz In The Hood". Detailing the picaresque adventures of African-American Gunnar Kauffman as he makes the adjustment to a black inner city neighborhood after growing up in the relatively benign white neighborhood of Santa Monica, Beatty displays dazzlingly creative wordplay and mastery of language, in the tradition of James Joyce and Ralph Ellison. I give it four stars only because I reserve five stars for a book like Ellison's "Invisible Man" which is the apotheosis of the coming of age novel. But believe me, "White Boy Shuffle" is no slouch in that department. Plus it's laugh out loud funny. It's the black "Catcher In The Rye". I once recommended it to Chris Rock telling him, "This guy is doing in prose what you're doing on stage." Which was telling the truth. And while the characters of "White Boy Shuffle" are not developed emotionally and psychologically, this is an extremely clever rant against all the hypocrasies and excesses of contemporary American society.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By on November 5, 1997
Format: Paperback
Nose pressed against your life? Not getting out enough, smelling American sights and sounds beyond the new mall? Is your current prose reading as soggy as 2% milk on cornflakes left overnight? Might I suggest a romp through past and present, 'burb and 'hood, white and black, in Paul Beatty's White Boy Shuffle. Unlike a lot of "the silent tragedy of my pathetic life" novels, White Boy Shuffle plays for high stakes and generally wins all bets. As a suburban kid myself, I can attest to the sharpness of Beatty's eyes and ears in his depictions of that flat landscape. Every other area gazed upon, inner-city LA, academic life, pseudo radicals, receive the same treatment of the right detail, the cutting insight and the exploding humor. It's all over the top, as black suburban skateboarder finds the inner city, get stomped on, plays ball, writes poetry, is wooed by academia only to become black messiah preaching suicide. It works most of the time and even when Beatty can't pull everything off, your left with the talent of a man who knows how to make a paragraph sing. In an age when social satire is bad manners, the ambition to take it all in and give it back to us, mean and beautiful, has to be appreciated.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 19, 1999
Format: Paperback
gone to the bookstore just to browse, pulled a book off the shelf just because it had an interesting cover, read one paragraph, and immediately headed to the check-out line with it? That's what I did with _White Boy Shuffle_, and have been so thankful for that fortuitous trip to Bookstop ever since (sorry Amazon; this was before your days). I took it with me on a business trip. I laughed on the plane, I laughed in the hotel one dared come near me. What a smart, funny read. Sure wish he'd write another novel; I'm not too much into poetry.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By CB1979 on December 2, 2005
Format: Paperback
Look, you have five minutes. I know you do. You're goofing off at work right now. If you have five minutes, open this book up to page 12 and read the main character's recitation of his family history, a deleriously self-loathing parade of misunderstanding and Uncle-Tomism throughout the entirity of American history, starting with his great-grandfather pushing Crispus Attucks in front of a bullet. If you can make it through that entire section without laughing, you probably shouldn't buy this book. But only because you don't have a soul.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Angela Bratvold on December 12, 2006
Format: Paperback
Paul Beatty's novel The White Boy Shuffle is about a young black boy who, after his mom feels that his growing up in "white" society is detrimental to his and his sisters racial identity decides to move to a Los Angeles suburb. Throughout the novel, Gunnar is constantly struggling to find his identity. Beatty portrays Gunnar's identification struggle by revealing the stereotypes that society places on the black community and the stereotypes that they place on themselves. At one point in the novel, Gunnar struggles escaping from "white" language and has to constantly work on maintaining the slang of the community. However, the stereotypes in the novel aren't limited to "black" and "white" as there are stereotypes about Latino's, Korean's etc. throughout the novel.

Throughout the novel, Gunnar begins to realize that he has the ability to be a talented poet. I found this part interesting because the language within the novel itself is at times poetic and can read like a prose about the social stereotypes. Also, the language of the novel can be at times difficult and confusing. As a native Montanan, I was unaware of some of the terminology throughout the novel. However, once I began to surpass the challenging language of the novel, I was able to laugh at the humor that Beatty illuminates through his satire about social labels.

I would recommend this novel to people that are looking for a challenging novel and interested in a fresh viewpoint on racial labels. The novel for me was difficult to get in to originally, but once I started to understand its purpose, it became extremely intriguing to me. I still don't understand many parts of the novel, especially the ending, but I think that was part of Beatty's purpose. He created an unpredictable narrator to tell the fictional story of a boy growing up surrounded by stereotypes and I doubt I will ever fully understand the novel, but I still found it an interesting read.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
The White Boy Shuffle: A Novel
This item: The White Boy Shuffle: A Novel
Price: $12.73
Ships from and sold by

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Want to discover more products? Check out these pages to see more: the table my mother set, standing up mannequins, madame c j walker kids