NC Reads @ WFHM | Money Rock
April 25 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
About NC Reads at the Wake Forest Historical Museum
North Carolina Reads is a statewide book club exploring issues of racial, social, and gender equality and the history and culture of North Carolina. North Carolina Humanities is a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. All five books chosen in 2023 pose critical questions about how North Carolinians view their role in helping to form a more just and inclusive society.
The Wake Forest Historical Museum is one of many community groups across North Carolina that host a local, on-site program of their own to accompany NC Humanities’ virtual events. Each month, we’ll meet at the museum to discuss a book and join people across the state in watching a live conversation with the author and subject-matter experts.
This is a great chance to meet neighbors who share your interest in the history and culture of North Carolina! At the heart of North Carolina Reads is NC Humanities’ desire to connect communities through shared reading experiences. Reading is important because it helps develop critical-thinking skills; strengthens minds, vocabulary, and mental health; and creates opportunities to empathize with others’ stories and experiences.
NC Humanities has graciously given the museum a limited number of free books that will be available to participants. When registering please note if you would like to be considered for one of these books. Books can also be purchased from our local bookstore, Page158 Books, or checked out from Wake County Libraries.
If you have any questions, please email Sarah Soleim at firstname.lastname@example.org.
April 25, 2023 | Money Rock: A Family’s Story of Cocaine, Race, and Ambition in the New South by Pam Kelly
About the Book
Non-Fiction. Meet Money Rock. He’s young. He’s charismatic. He’s generous, often to a fault. He’s one of Charlotte’s most successful cocaine dealers, and that’s what first prompted veteran reporter Pam Kelley to craft this riveting social history—by turns action-packed, uplifting, and tragic—of a striving African American family, swept up and transformed by the 1980s cocaine epidemic.
The saga begins in 1963 when a budding civil rights activist named Carrie gives birth to Belton Lamont Platt, eventually known as Money Rock, in a newly integrated North Carolina hospital. Pam Kelley takes readers through a shootout that shocks the city, a botched FBI sting, and a trial with a judge known as “Maximum Bob.” When the story concludes more than a half-century later, Belton has redeemed himself. But three of his sons have met violent deaths and his oldest, fresh from prison, struggles to make a new life in a world where the odds are stacked against him.
This gripping tale, populated with characters both big-hearted and flawed, shows how social forces and public policies—racism, segregation, the War on Drugs, mass incarceration—help shape individual destinies. Money Rock is a deeply American story, one that will leave readers reflecting on the near impossibility of making lasting change, in our lives and as a society, until we reckon with the sins of our past.
“Compelling. . . . Kelley’s captivating account bears witness to people and places simultaneously striving and stuck; to the redemptive power of women; and to faith that a better way might be possible, for ourselves and our cities.”
—Susan Burton, author of Becoming Ms. Burton: From Prison to Recovery to Leading the Fight for Incarcerated Women
About the Meeting
Participants will meet at the Wake Forest Historical Museum on Tuesday, April 25, 2023 at 6 PM. The live-streamed author conversation begins at 7:00 PM in the auditorium. Participants need not have finished the book to participate. Feel free to arrive early to visit with fellow readers or browse the exhibit gallery. Refreshments will be served.
How to Get a Copy of the Book
The museum has a very limited supply of free books for participants. Please indicate your interest in the book below.
Carolina Built is available through Wake County Public Libraries (WCPL).
Paperback and hardcover copies of Game Changers can be purchased from Page 158 Books, our local bookstore. Please let the store know that you are participating in the museum’s book club to receive a special discount. If you are in the local area, the bookstore can deliver orders of $20 or more to these zip codes: 27587 and 27571. They also offer curbside pickup 11 am-6 pm Monday thru Saturday, and Books can be shipped to your home.
NC Reads at WFHM is supported by North Carolina Humanities, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, nchumanities.org.
Any views, findings, conclusions, opinions, or recommendations expressed do not necessarily represent those of NC Humanities or the National Endowment for the Humanities.