First, there was Fist Stick Knife Gun, a memoir by Geoffrey Canada, President and Chief Executive Officer of Harlem Children's Zone. The Zone was praised by the New York Times as "… one of the most ambitious social experiments of our time. It combines educational, social and medical services. It starts at birth and follows children to college. It meshes those services into an interlocking web, and then it drops that web over an entire neighborhood … The objective is to create a safety net woven so tightly that children in the neighborhood just can't slip through." Canada has been called, "One of the few authentic heroes of New York and one of the best friends children have, or ever will have, in our nation." And Publisher's Weekly said of his memoir, "A more powerful depiction of the tragic life of urban children and a more compelling plea to end 'America's war against itself' cannot be imagined."
A couple years ago, Beacon Press began work on a few graphic books. Fist Stick Knife Gun was one of the first titles chosen, and Jamar Nicholas was brought on board by editor Allison Trzop to bring it to reality. Jamar posted on the blog early in the process, and shared some sketches with us along the way:
Yesterday, Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence (A True Story in Black and White) hit the stores. Jamar Nicholas found a copy at his local Barnes and Noble.Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence (A True Story in Black & White)