(Knopf, Hardcover, 9780679446262, 192pp.)
Publication Date: June 11, 1996
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An electrifying first novel that shocks by its language, its circumstances, and its brutal honesty, Push recounts a young black street-girl's horrendous and redemptive journey through a Harlem inferno. For Precious Jones, 16 and pregnant with her father's child, miraculous hope appears and the world begins to open up for her when a courageous, determined teacher bullies, cajoles, and inspires her to learn to read, to define her own feelings and set them down in a diary.
This is Sapphire's first novel. She was born in 1950 and grew up on army bases in California, Pennsylvania, and Texas. She was graduated from City College in New York, received an MFA from Brooklyn College, and taught reading and writing to teenagers and adults in Harlem and the Bronx for eight years. Sapphire is a performance poet and the author of American Dreams. She lives in New York City.