The Tempest Tales by Walter Mosley

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Mistaken for another man, wily Tempest is "accidentally" shot by police. Sent to receive the judgment of heaven he discovers his sins, according to St. Peter, condemn him to hell. Tempest takes exception to the saint's definition of sin; he refuses to go to hell and explains that he, a poor Black man living in Harlem, did what he did for family, friends,and love.

St. Peter, whose judgment has never been challenged, understands the secret of damnation and heaven's celestial authority--mortals must willingly accept their sins.

Should Tempest continue his refusal, heaven will collapse, thereby allowing hell and its keeper,the fallen angel Satan, to reign supreme. The only solution: send this recalcitrant mortal back to earth with an accounting angel,whose all-important mission is to persuade Tempest to accept his sins and St. Peter' judgment.

Using the street smarts that served him so well in his previous life, Mosley's hero takes the accounting angel on a tour of mortal life that tests not only heaven's notions, but the poor angel's own resolve.

In this episodic battle with heaven and hell for his ultimate destiny, Tempest also takes the reader on a philosophic and humorous journey where free will is pitted against class and race--and the music of heaven is pitted against the blues.

About Walter Mosley

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Walter Mosley was born in Los Angeles, California on January 12, 1952. He graduated from Johnson State College in Vermont. His first book, Devil in a Blue Dress, was published in 1990, won a John Creasy Award for best first novel, and was made into a motion picture starring Denzel Washington in 1995. He is the author of the Easy Rawlins Mystery series, the Leonid McGill Mystery series, and the Fearless Jones series. His other works include Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned, 47, Last Days of Ptolemy Grey, and Twelve Steps toward Political Revelation. He has received numerous awards, including an O. Henry Award, the Carl Brandon Society Parallax Award, and PEN America's Lifetime Achievement Award.
Published May 1, 2008 by Black Classic Press. 180 pages
Genres: Religion & Spirituality, Literature & Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy. Fiction

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Tempest Landry is walking up Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard in Harlem, minding his own business, when a police officer takes him for an armed robber he’s pursuing and shoots him dead.

Apr 15 2008 | Read Full Review of The Tempest Tales


By denouncing he is a sinner, Tempest brings into question the judgment of heaven and all condemned souls.

Jun 11 2011 | Read Full Review of The Tempest Tales

Bookmarks Magazine

Stymied, Saint Peter sends him back to Harlem, where a guiding angel tries to convince him to accept Saint Peter's judgment, and even the Devil himself tries to win over Tempest s soul.

May 26 2008 | Read Full Review of The Tempest Tales

Socialist Review

Angel's fundamental problem is that while he can account for Tempest's transgressions his lack of human experience precludes him from understanding them.

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