Best-selling author Colson Whitehead has been a finalist for numerous prestigious honors, including the Pulitzer Prize. His works are lauded for their insight into the state of race in America. Here, a small Midwestern town is having an identity crisis: should they have a new techno-savvy name or a name honoring the freedmen who founded the town? Or is the current name just fine? They call in a professional naming consultant, famous for naming Apex bandages, guaranteed to match any skin color. But even he is losing his faith in monikers.
"Whitehead deftly cloaks his cynical take on race and consumer culture in his narrator's earnest philosophizing." (The New Yorker) "Kindred spirit to Stanley Elkin, William Gaddis, and Paul Auster, Whitehead archly explicates the philosophy of excess and the poetics of ludicrousness, and he incisively assesses the power inherent in the act of naming." (Booklist)