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Green Sun by Kent Anderson
Oakland, California, 1983: a Vietnam veteran-turned-police officer strives to be both a good cop and a good man.

Before Hanson arrived in Oakland, he had already seen some of the worst of humanity on a tour of duty in Vietnam and a stint in the Portland, Oregon police department. And then he moves to California to join the under-funded, understaffed Oakland police force. Unlike nearly all of his fellow officers, Hanson deliberately chooses to live in the precinct that he patrols; he takes seriously his duty to serve and protect the black community--his neighbors--in East Oakland.

Hanson befriends a neighborhood boy, embarks on a romantic relationship, and tries to remain in a notorious drug dealer's good graces, all while struggling to stay a good cop despite the forces of hate and violence threatening him from all sides.

GREEN SUN is bracingly relevant to both the political and cultural moment we're currently living in: Hanson is a white cop who meets black civilians not as antagonists, but as allies against his becoming the type of cop that he hates most.
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