My autobiography . . .
. . . growing up in the South Bronx during the 80’s, with the backdrop of housing projects, drugs, crime, gangs and a nascent black nationalism that constantly chastised me for not being “black enough”
Why that title?
As stated, my complexion was challenged by my peers. But it didn’t stop there. My interests weren’t black enough, or at all. Neither was my musical taste. Or my outlook. Despite my desire to be a credit to my race, I had no idea that I antagonized the people I sought to belong with.
I never contemplated the question of a black president, but my entire community thought it impossible. To this day I find those who thought, “I never thought it could happen” as part of the problem.
“Conrad’s story about life in the Bronx isn’t anything new. If you were different you were ridiculed, put down and stomped. His story is about history and the reality of life as an atypical black man. Even though his story was hurtful to read it was vivid and colorful. I felt the disappointment, pain, anger, defeat, and finally the realization that he could be none other then himself. I really enjoyed the story, and at the end it hit me that my friend went through that. This was just his story, it was his history. Thank you Conrad there are a lot of kids still going through the same things you did. I hope that they get the opportunity to read this history and find hope and encouragement that they to can rise above.”
– Lucy villari
“This book gripped me in different ways. It often tugged on my emotions when I laughed out loud, but several times became angry at the way one human can treat another. Conrad Queen touched a nerve of what it is like for a teenager to find his or her place in a societal atmosphere where one size does not fit all. He was like a trout swimming upstream–constantly fighting the elements and challenges that came his way. This book should be read by every teenage Middle and High Schooler. It will encourage young people that they can be different rather than rolling with the crowd. It will also remind people that bullying is real and the victim bleeds red blood and is a person of worth and worthy of respect. I applaud the author’s transparency in writing this book. It was raw, real and riveting. This was truly a Bronx Tale that needs to be heard.”
– Rev. Dr. Charles A. Ferrara NYPD Ret.
“The book is a necessary read for anyone that has felt like an outcast in his or her own community. I met Conrad and we had a great conversation about our childhoods. I understood his childhood because it was like mine. Black but not quite black enough. Always on the outside, looking into a world that did not really embrace you as one of their own. For all those trying to find your voice this is the book!”