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Futureface Reviews

Futureface by Alex Wagner


A Family Mystery, an Epic Quest, and the Secret to Belonging

Alex Wagner

Score pending

1 review

Imprint: One World
Publisher: One World
Publication date: 17 Apr 2018
ISBN: 9780812997941

The daughter of a Burmese mother and a white American father, Alex Wagner grew up thinking of herself as a "futureface"--an avatar of a mixed-race future when all races would merge into a brown singularity. But when one family mystery leads to another, Wagner's post-racial ideals fray as she becomes obsessed with the specifics of her own family's racial and ethnic history. 

3 stars out of 5
Jennifer Szalai
11 Apr 2018

"a rich and revealing memoir."

What’s missing in “Futureface” is a palpable sense of who Wagner became after her teenage years. She self-deprecatingly alludes to being a “bad friend” who lives with her husband in “an overpriced converted yuppie loft complex” that she despises. For the most part, though, Wagner turns her gaze outward, away from her life as it is right now. The result is a book that seems mercilessly honest from one angle and carefully guarded from another.

Wagner’s skepticism and irreverence are so polished that you want to get a better sense of what motivates them. But the harsh light she shines on those around her can be so blinding that we lose sight of who she is.