National Black Book Festival


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

My extended Family

Number 26

How come when someone dies, you call up people you have not talked to in a long time? I called up my cousin Miriam, when I could not find her on face book, but I did not call my mother. She’s not really talking to me. She is angry over money and some deep hurt from 20 years ago that I never caused, but I was around at the time it happened and I refused to go into that hole she calls grudges and hate. I forgave her long time ago and moved on. She has not. I will, though, continue to pray that one day she will forgive the ones who are gone and the ones who are left. You can’t die with that on your mind.

I’m trying to cry about the death of Suleiman, but I sort of knew it was coming, but still I did not want it to come. Suleiman was 59 years old. To me at that age, that’s not old, but I’m sure someone 20 to 40 probably thinks it is. 59 is a young age these days. So many people don’t look it. I’m not talking about those movie stars or people with money to burn who uses plastic surgery and stick Botox crap in their face to look young. I mean 59 is just shy of being 40. Yep, that 50 will come around pretty quickly after you turn 40 and 30 comes around to 40 damn fast, but he was still so young and handsome. I loved him. Just sorry I did not tell him enough. Isn’t that the way it is. We don’t tell our friends, love ones Thank You, I Love You, I appreciate You, I need you. I want to help you. We don’t do it enough.

I grew up around Suleiman and his brother and sisters - Idris, Aleema and Saleema. Yes, their names came from their father who was a practicing Muslim from the Malcolm X era. I never met him, he died young. Suleiman to me was a big brother. He was tall, with light coffee complexion, long strong hands and beautiful white teeth. He had a short bush that was always cut close to his face. He was very handsome and he knew it. I use to hang out at their house when my mother would visit their mother. I was always funny to hear him, his brother and sisters argue all the time, especially when their mother use to tell them to get to their chores. There was always a battle between the sisters as to who’s week it was to wash dishes. Their mother did not care as long as the dishes were done and the kitchen clean when she got home from work. One day I was at the house and their mother came home to a dirty sink. Now this woman was 5 feet tall and Suleiman, his brother and sisters were all over 6 feet tall. That did not stop that woman from smacking the shit out of them when it came to keeping that house in order. Man, I would run out the door because I did not want to see that. For a small woman, her ass was strong. I miss. Idris and Suleiman are now both gone and I would not wish that even on the Devil himself for a parent to outlive a child. I know I would die. No if’s, but’s about it, I would die.

Jesus replied, "You do not realise now what I am doing, but later you will understand." John 13:7

I hope and pray we all do realize it when it comes to living and not until death to tell them how much they mean to us. Let’s get to some books.



THIS FIRE DOWN IN MY SOUL - $9.99 - - - Quote from Amazon - The ladies of Hope Filled Christian Center (How many funny names of a church are we going to see?) spend more time serving other women's husbands than they do serving the Lord in Mason's fourth novel, a soap opera–like tale about the bad choices smart women make for love and companionship. Holier-than-thou Faye Watkins is married to the pastor of one of the largest churches in Dallas. She has a psychology degree and counsels the women of her husband's church, mostly about their problems with men. Among her charges is Renee Turner, a bohemian interior decorator who leads the church's singles' ministry. Renee breaks a long romantic dry spell with a client's husband, which has some negative consequence. Elise Clayton, a choir member and real estate agent, would do anything to get Jay, a married-with-kids truck driver, to leave his wife. And newly empty-nested Tess Martin wishes she had the strength to leave her philandering husband, Jesse, a church deacon who sleeps with everyone but her. Readers of commercial African-American fiction who haven't yet discovered Mason would do well to pick up this steamy cautionary tale. Sounds like “Church Folk.”


KISS OF SEDUCTION: URBAN EROTIC TALES - $4.99 – I had to stick this book in here. The cover shows a white guy holding up a black woman against the wall while kissing her. Hey, it looked interesting.


TORN BETWEEN TWO LOVERS - $9.29 - - - I just finish reading this book for my book club, The Literary Divas of the Low Country, and all I can say is, Damn! Damn! I did not read the prior book, BIG GIRLS DO CRY - $9.99 on Kindle, but got to now. Man, that Loraine, Leon, Michael had me up all night trying to get to the end. The bona fide character in the book is Jerome. That mother will have you laughing and pissing your ass off at the same time. I gave my copy to a girl at work and I said to her, “Tell me what you think about Jerome?” That was Monday. By Wednesday morning, the girl was begging for more from Carol Weber. I tell you that damn book had me going. I cannot wait for his next book, THE CHOIR DIRECTOR in February 2011. If we don’t have enough church stuff going on now, I’m sure Mr. Weber will just stir more piss in the pot. That man can write a story.

DAMAGED - $9.99 - - - Quote from Amazon - Dupree's debut offers readers an unvarnished look at the troubled, violence-filled lives of inner-city youth in Washington, D.C., frequently through the eyes and experiences of Camille Logan. Ten-year-old Camille is placed with the Brinkley’s, yet another foster family, where she suffers extreme mental and sexual abuse for years, until she's rescued by Chu, a low-level drug dealer who actually loves and looks after her. But when Chu is murdered in a drug deal gone wrong, Camille makes a desperate choice to join a cruel pimp's stable, where she faces her situation and struggles to change her life.

THE LAST MS. UNDERSTANDING - $2.99 also by her