Tuff (Paperback)

A Novel

By Paul Beatty

Anchor, 9780385721110, 272pp.

Publication Date: August 21, 2001

Other Editions of This Title:
Compact Disc (11/2/2018)
MP3 CD (11/29/2016)

List Price: 15.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


From the author of the 2016 Man Booker Prize winner The Sellout comes a novel as fast-paced and hard-edged as the Harlem streets it portrays.

Age nineteen and weighing in at 320 pounds, Winston “Tuffy” Foshay, is an East Harlem denizen who breaks jaws and shoots dogs and dreams of millions from his idea Cap’n Crunch: The Movie, starring Danny DeVito. His best friend is a disabled Muslim who wants to rob banks, his guiding light is an ex-hippie Asian woman who worked for Malcolm X, and his wife, Yolanda, he married from jail over the phone. 

He’s funny and fierce, frustrated and feared. And when Tuff decides to run for City Council, this dazzling novel goes from profoundly funny to acerbically sublime. Populated with an incisively hilarious supporting case and filled with meaning and irreverent, Tuff is satire at its hard-edged best.

About the Author

Paul Beatty is the author of the novels Tuff, Slumberland, The White Boy Shuffle and the 2016 Man Booker Prize winner The Sellout, and the poetry collections Big Bank Take Little Bank and Joker, Joker, Deuce. He was the editor of Hokum: An Anthology of African-American Humor. He lives in New York City.

Praise For Tuff: A Novel

“[M]asterfully conceived and highly entertaining.... Richly textured and unforgettable.”–The Boston Globe

“[A]n extravagant, satirical cri de coeur from the inner city.... Tuff is a funny book, and Mr. Beatty’s blunt, impious, streetwise eloquence has a...transfixing power.”–The New York Times

“When Beatty writes, it’s not hard to pay attention.”–USA Today