Literary Nonfiction. African & African American Studies. Music. WOLVES is a mixtape of allegorical memoir, what Jeffrey "Boosie" Bolden called "literary raps" from his time chasing dreams in Gulfport, Mississippi, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It is an African-American fantasy, a deeper look into the people America calls "thugs." Hip hop guides the rhythms of the prose and leaves its music within the reader long after the pages have been turned.
"Time and place are the rails upon which Jeffery Bolden's work runs. Non-sequential but beautifully linked through lyricism, WOLVES guides its readers steadily by a third rail of joy and pain, a latitude people and moments sprawling over the page yet held tight with an MC’s mind. A mixtape of memoir, this collection of tracks speaks to and for those who have scraped through the rough margins of 21st century America, scraped through building a sense of self in new places time and time again, and scraped their way to self-realization. Hip-hop in heart, flow, and delivery, WOLVES is a great book."—Cameron Barnett
"In WOLVES, Jeffrey Bolden creates an atmosphere you can touch. Track by track, this hybrid work grabs the reader like plugging into a tape deck. His characters are both golden-celebrity and everyday-grit, their voices penetrating the imagination like a sound wave. Bolden writes through music: hip-hop legends whisper throughout his lyricism. Shoulder to shoulder, they stand like giants. Yet, it is Bolden who echoes, reshaping the literary landscape. This is a book of dreams and redemption, of black love and vulnerability. Bolden interrogates the mirror of the self, of what it means to be a black man in America who dreams with his pen and ink."—Brittany Hailer
Jeffrey Bolden (1987-2020), known as Boosie, was an alumnus of Chatham University's MFA program. Hailing from many places, Boosie had a deep connection with the South which is demonstrated throughout his language, his poetry, and his creation. He didn't speak on the sprawling pastoral beauty which the South is known for, but rather the hard- hitting stories of violence and crime with an emphasis on the music that comes from underground, Southern rappers. Boosie created A Collage of Song and Story, conceptual performance pieces that infused elements of fiction, non-fiction, spoken word, and poetry into a narrative told through lyrics of the rappers and other artists that had inspired Boosie so much. As he said, "This is simply my dedication to all of the lyricists that came before me." Boosie passed away suddenly on June 23rd, 2020.Author City: GULFPORT, MS USA