National Black Book Festival


Monday, May 30, 2011

It's Black History - Interracial

I met two very beautiful and intelligent black women over the weekend.  They were having a girl friend weekend and just arrived from Columbia, SC.  They asked me, “Hey, where are the black men around here? and where can we meet them?  Also, where’s a good place to eat and listen to some good music?  Since they were only here for a few days, I recommended they check out Mercato’s restaurant and listen to some jazz.  Ms. Ann Caldwell is singing tonight and you will truly enjoy her.
Now, your first question.  I am not going to bash Charleston, SC because they don’t have a huge amount of eligible black men, that’s world wide.  When this economy went down two years ago, it got harder, so chin up and either accept a man who may work at McDonald's or Dunkin Donuts or as Michael Baisden has stated a few times, try White men.  Yes, we do have many black men with drugs, baby mommy drama, women who give up the cookies on a moments notice and men who, now this has been my issue, don’t have teeth or I think they have forgotten how to brush their teeth.  I remember I met a guy at a club my friend was hounding me to go with her, The Venezuela.  Say it long “The Ven ne zu swella,” and a short guy, I’m 6 feet tall, with not only missing three front teeth, but gold on the rest, tried to pick me up with only his smile.  I was just about to laugh in his face, but thought, just tell the man no thank you.  I did and he still caught an attitude.  I figure he knew he did not have a chance to even try to climb this mountain, but he was going to give it a try.  Another thing, he had on a jacket that was trying to resemble leather, but it cracked under his arms.  Don't ask me what was going on under there, I was just scared!!
I did tell them to let it go!! What ever feelings you have about black men, especially the negative ones, let them go.  No, there are not enough black men to go around unless you move to another state and/or city, until you find what you are looking for.  If you are not able to move, then accept the fact that he is out there for you, but he may be “white.”  

You know, God has a way of answering.  While we were talking, a white man and black woman walked up to the Mexican restaurant we were standing in front of.  You know, they were cute and he took her hand and held the door for her.  I told those women, "Ya see, they look OK, don't they?  
It’s not the color you should be looking for, for some it is, but we got to let go of the negative and see what God has for us, I think he knows.  Now, let me give you some books on the subject.
THAYER KING - FRIENDS - $4.99 - - - Romance between white guy and black girl, but isn’t there always a twist.  It hit me while searching for books and I thought, why not, that’s the theme for today, so I brought it and finished in that night.  Kind of short but very, very sweet.  Kayla and Joshua spend the night together, but Kayla is feeling pretty bad because their are partners not “friends with benefits.”  Joshua on the other hand has looked forward to this for a long time and now he has got to try to get Kayla on a permanent basis.  
J. J. MURRAY - I’M YOUR GIRL - $4.47 - - - I read this a while ago and whenever black women talk to me about how come they cannot find a good black man (they do exist, we just have to keep looking, but in the meantime, stop complaining!!), I suggest these types of books.  Of course the women character in this story is a librarian and I love libraries.  Diane, the librarian, and Jack, a widowed, meet in the library while Jack is doing research on his next book.  It just so happens that Diane, a African American Book Reviewer, criticized his first book and when she meets him at the library, she is wondering why is this white man researching black literature.  Hey, they know a good thing when they (white men) see it.  Black is beautiful!! Isn’t it!!
J. J. MURRAY - THE REAL THING - $7.99 - - - Former boxing champion Dante "Blood and Guts" Lattanza is being featured in Personality magazine's "Sexiest Men Alive" issue, and reporter Christiana Artis has the scoop. There's just one hitch: she'll have to fly to her elusive subject's home in Canada. But once she lays eyes on Dante's chiseled physique and sultry Italian looks, she decides it was worth every mile. Too bad his icy demeanor doesn't match his hot body.
Since he lost his last fight ten years ago, Dante has led a reclusive life and he never gives interviews. But he's making a comeback, ready to prove to the world and his ex-wife that he can still win a championship. He gives Christiana an ultimatum: if she can perform five tasks, she can ask him five questions. And then she can be on her way. Yet Dante's always had a weakness for beautiful black women (I told you!!! Black is Beautiful;!!) and seeing Christiana everyday is enough to melt his defenses. (This sounds like one of those Westmoreland
Now this next book is what I call, “OK, I need me some of that and soon!!!, like now!!!)
J. J. MURRAY - CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF YOUR LOVE - $6.99 Paperback - - - In her search for Mr. Right, Erlana Joy Cole has met lots of prospects, but she's never been able to narrow it down to just one. (OH, isn’t that a damn shame.  I could be so ding dong lucky!!) And why should she? After all, you can't ask a woman to have only one pair of shoes, or one book, right? So why settle for just one man?
Instead, she's got herself her own "Earth, Wind, and Fire" of men. There's her "Earth," Roger, a white soul brother with a sweet mind and a wicked touch. There's "Wind," Karl, a tattooed entrepreneur who's straight out of Erlana's roots. And as for Juan, well, he's pure "Fire," fierce and passionate and hot as they come. Put them all together and a sister's got everything she could ever want (You can tell I don’t like her!!! lol) not that she would ever put them all together. Huh-uh, no way. That can NOT happen.
But now, Erlana's juggling act is getting too hot to handle. And sooner or later, a girl's gotta make a choice while she's still got a choice to make. 
I am not going to feel sorry for this girl.  No Ding Dong Way!!
I’m on a roll and will bring more interracial books on my next blog.  In the meantime, GOT TO GET ONE IN FOR BLACK HISTORY - - - - 
My great grandmother, grandmother and mother introduced me to FRANK YERBY.  From the covers of his books, white people, I thought they were just making sure I read everything and anything, not just black authors.  Wrong.  A few years later while traveling to book fairs and such, I found more of his books and brought them.  It was not until later that I figured out that this author was black.  Remember, books in the 40s and 50s did not have many of us on the cover and if the author was black, they did not tell you that or the author hid his roots from the publishers and I'm sure other reasons as well.  
I like adventure books and reading them as a child. I enjoyed the conflicts of Muslims and Christians in Moorish Spain, romance in the Roman Empire (That is one of the reasons my major in college was Roman History), Yeshiva (Jesus), historical Christianity and such.  I’m reading the Outlander book series by Diana Gabaldon - First one is Outlander for $8.99 on the Kindle.  Outlander: with Bonus Content
If you like adventure and romance with some history, try his books.  It will expand your knowledge and expand the daredevil in you.
FLOODTIDE - $7.32 Hardcover (Amazon also has one for one penny with shipment for a total of $4.00) - - - Here’s a funny review from A. Woman - Not a dull moment in the book.   From the stately plantations of Natchez to the dangerous jungles of Cuba, and all bedrooms in between. Ross Pary was born in Natchez-Under-The-Hill, where the poor low life's live. But he has the drive and ambition to make it up on the Hill, where the rich folks live. Ross is in love with Jennie. No, wait, he's in love with Morgan. No, wait, he's in love with Conchita. No, wait, he's in love with Cathy. No, wait, he's not REALLY in love with her. Oh, make up your mind already! 
Morgan is your standard, cat-in-heat younger wife of an elderly Southern gentlemen. She's Ka-ra-zy with a capital K, yet all the men in Natchez still keep swarming around her. That's because they're Stupid with a capital S. Want an example? While Ross is passionately kissing Morgan, she shoots him in the side with a small pistol. What does he do next? Why, he drags himself home and starts composing music inspired by Morgan's uninhibited dancing. Because that's what you do when you've been shot, dont'cha know. 
While the time period is just ten years before the Civil War, the main concern of the book seems to be with the peasant revolution going on in Cuba. Ross follows one of his lady loves to the island and endures all sorts of horrors and hardships. While the experience does change him a bit for a better man, he's still a love slave for Morgan, who is certifiable. This woman needs some serious therapy, I'm tellin' ya. They all need some serious therapy. 
So why am I generously giving it two stars? Like I said, there's always something going on. There are no lulls, no dull spots, and surprisingly there are a few characters worth liking. Oh, but as usual concerning books written around this time, do NOT expect any political correctness. No race is safe, and no woman of any race is safe. 
She is right, books written in those days did not want to be politically correct and just did not give a damn what you thought.  Hey, that’s why some of the books were that good!!  Man, this guy sounds like he was making many a "booty" call to me, even in the 17th and 18th centuries.  

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Yep!! Black History is here to stay!!!


I’m back from taking my daughter to DC to live with Dad and start graduate school and work.  We drove from Charleston and, of course, made our usual stops for Starbucks coffee (I know where every Starbucks is from Miami to Maine and DC to Houston, Texas.  I got it marked in my iPad.  I need help don't I).  We also stopped at JR.  It’s on exit 97 on 95.  They sell the largest selection of cigarettes and cigars, as well as clothes, food, a huge perfume selection (I did not know every single singer or reality star has a perfume or cologne on the market.  Damn, I bet that stinks after you smell them all.  Whoa! Brother! what a smell!), candy and books.  
For a few years of my traveling from Charleston to DC and when we stopped at JR, I would call my mother and asked what perfume she wanted and look over some books.  They had some good kids books and a few mysteries I like, but very little African American books, until about two years ago.  They now have a large selection of books by African American and here’s a few I brought for $2 to $7.  Hey, it was a bargain.
Have you every gone to Amazon’s Instant Video, well, while looking for books for my blog, I ran into a movie that you can rent for $2.99 or buy for $9.99, “FINDING ME,” a movie about a young gay black man’s journey to self-discovery.  Of course I said, Whoops, that’s not what I was looking for and noticed half way down the advertisement for the movie about 7 more black gay movies.  I didn’t know it was that many out there.  You never know do you, Oh, well, go back and find the book I was looking for.
DERRICK MOORE - IT’S POSSIBLE: TURN YOUR DREAMS INTO REALITY - $9.99 - - - This is the Kindle version price, but at JR, I got it for $2.00.  What a bargain! What a bargain!  It’s really about getting your dream back on and staying on it.  If you can dream, and feel God in you, then you can do it.  It really is possible to reach your dream and putting a little faith in it too.   Try it, we all need more faith.
RICHARD YOUNG - THE JOURNEY OF T.D. JAKES - - - $15.59 Hardback  Got it at JR for $7.00.  It’s not a longer biography and it talks about his Potter House ministry, his family life, his wealth and affluence, and his entry into movies.  It’s another inspirational book about reaching your dreams, and the bottom line, you still need God.  

VICTOR McGLOTHIN and J. D. MASON - SLEEP DON’T COME EASY - $9.69 - - - I have heard a lot about J. D. Mason from book clubs and friends.  They say the girl can write, but I’m behind some of her books and plan on taking care of that soon, especially since I got this book for $4.00. 
Here’s a review from “The RAWISTAZ REVIEWERS - - - SLEEP DON'T COME EASY is the combined efforts of JD Mason and Victor McGlothin; they pen separate mysteries that are enticing to those who appreciate a good thriller. 
"The Lazarus Man" by JD Mason is an intriguing whodunit surrounding the death of Toni Robbins. She was murdered on the streets and there was an eyewitness to the crime, an insane homeless man called Lazarus.  Lazarus can't trust what's real and what's not as he deals with moments of mental clarity plaguing him. Will he be able to identify the killer and will his testimony be credible? 
"Tomorrow's Edge", Victor McGlothin's tale, has a twist. Vera Miles, a private investigator, is approached by a man who wants her to help identify him and the person he murdered. The investigation takes her on the path of drug dealers, crooked cops and a FBI cover-up. Vera starts to wonder if she's gotten in too deep. Who is this mystery man who has turned her world upside down? 
I am a fan of both JD Mason and Victor McGlothin, and it was great to see them come together in this genre. Although these were short stories, the delivery left me feeling as fulfilled as I would have been reading a full-length novel. Mason's plot engaged me while McGlothin's colorful characters kept my interest piqued. I would recommend this one.
Hey, they got my vote.
VICTOR McGLOTHIN - SINFUL - $4.39 - - - Everybody's got a weakness and Chandelle Hutchins' is a love of material possessions.  A love that is causing serious trouble in her marriage. Chandelle's latest object of desire is an expensive new house. Her husband Marvin knows they can't afford it, and he also knows he can't talk Chandelle into giving it up. With their relationship crumbling under a mountain of debt, it may just be easier for Marvin to walk away. But with Chandelle's scheming cousin Dior in town, money may be the least of the couple's problems.

Dior's weakness is her insatiable appetite for causing trouble and her latest target is her cousin's marriage. When the time is right, Dior would like nothing more than to seduce Marvin on the rebound. But Dior is being trailed by her own troublemaker: a crazed female employer who refuses to release Dior from her twisted duties as nanny to her children and late night mistress to her kinky husband. Fortunately for everyone involved, the Lord works in mysterious ways. For despite a tangle of lies, manipulation, and mayhem, a series of unexpected events is about to bless everyone with a much needed second chance.
Well, Ding Dong! What the hell is going on in this book!!
CAROLIVIA HERRON - THEREAFTER JOHNNIE - $5.11 Hardcover (includes shipping) - - -  I have a first edition of this book.  You know I found it on one of my travels and saw her.  Even then, years and years ago, I would by any book from an African American author.  I did not care what the story was about, I figure I would figure it out later.  It was so rare to see and now there are so many to chose from, but still not enough for me.
I want to see us on the New York Times Bestsellers listing every month and not scattered through the year.  I’m not giving up.  I’m going to push this blog into every face I find.  I’m going to travel these here United States.  Not just to increase my subscriptions, but to get the word out that “WE ARE GOOD!!!
This intricate and fascinating first novel tells the story of several generations of an African American family in Washington, D.C. The central character, Johnnie, is the daughter of an incestuous union between her mother and grandfather. Through her eyes, light is shed not only on her own quite complicated family and social relations but on the very workings of history, religion, and identity in the community in which she lives. The unusual combination of classical epic structure and riveting, sometimes shockingly frank language is particularly striking and makes for an intense reading experience.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Kinda of late in submission. You know, Life happens. Black History Year!!!!


I know you have been a few days without me, but I have a good excuse.  My daughter graduated from college last Friday.  Her dad and I went up a few days early to get her ready for the ceremony and to pack all of that stuff in her apartment.  How does one person collect so many damn shoes!!  We had to get a U-Haul Truck.  How did my baby, who I held in my arms, grow up into such a beautiful woman?  We had the best week together before she goes to Washington, DC to start her job.  The ceremony was great and I just cried and cried.  My baby no more!!!  Now it's on to adulthood and I cannot stop it.  

Yes, I worked and worked thru my contacts in DC to get her and a few of her friends jobs.  Many of her friends did not want to leave SC.  I understand, their family is here, but she is going back.  It’s our home and always will be.  Coming down here to Charleston was another stop in my job but it was not going to stop me from sending her home and me later.  I need to go home or at least another state.  Cannot stay too long here.  I'm finished.  I raised her and got her through college.  It was hard and worth every single broke step.  It was worth it!!!!!!! 

Another thing I am very happy about is her father and I are still good friends.  I refuse to keep my hate toward him.  I forgave him and my self.  It’s over, so lets move on and raise this child together, even if we are far away, she is still your daughter and I’m not taking that away nor creating an environment of hatred, it’s not worth it.  Now I realize how important it was for me to let those feelings go so many years ago and push her toward him everyday and night.  It worked.  They have the best Father/Daughter relationship in the world and I’m more than happy about it.  
OK, I have been late, lets get to some books.  Will be back and not giving up, not one minute am I giving up.  I love this too much!!

J. J. MICHEL - SECRETS UNRAVELED - $.99  - - - Another story of a woman's rise to power, fall from grace, and fight for salvation. Since childhood Margaret Pierce has always heard voices in her head.  Trapped in a world of delusions and fears, she refused to believe either of her psychiatrists' diagnosis, one being schizophrenia and the other psychic. Once the most powerful first lady of the renowned Mt. Olive Baptist Church of Washington, DC, she now spends her days in her bedroom planning her climb back to the top. But one person stands in her way, Pastor Alan Pierce, her husband, who threatens to have her committed to a mental institution.  He better watch out, she knows his deep dark secrets, but of course no one will listen to her, until some crap hits the fan.  Pretty good “Dynasty - TV Soap Opera” stuff.  Have you noticed, these “christian” books always got some serious and funny stuff going on.  I’m enjoying it because so many people go to church on Sunday and play “devil” games the rest of the week.  When will we learn, when will we learn!!
I just started reading, VICTORIA CHRISTOPHER MURRAY - TRUTH BE TOLD - $11.00.  I’ve just begun to read the book, but if a book catches your attention thru the first 20 pages, I usually give a book 50 pages, then I know you will enjoy this.  Another christian book and you may be tired of all of these christian books trying to tell it like it really is, but in each one there is an understand that all of us are wrong, but we can fix it.  Even have a little fun fixing it.  So, get with the program and forgive and more forward.  Your own life is at stake, so get off of it and move on.
This is not your mother's faith fiction. Murray knows how to make the sex scenes sizzle in her latest novel about Christians and the power of forgiveness. African-American couple Grace and Conner Monroe have had a bumpy life together: Grace once had an on-again, off-again affair, but she and her husband have rebuilt their marriage with love and prayer. Now, with Grace newly elected to the Los Angeles city council, it seems their life together has never been better, but, you know there’s a but.   Conner reveals that he was unfaithful years ago with his now-dying former assistant, and their adolescent son, Solomon, needs a father and a home. In the midst of her disillusionment, Grace must also deal with her 15-year-old daughter Jayde's rebellion and with Grace's competitive sister, Mabel (aka Starlight), whose career as a charlatan motivational speaker is catapulting her to fame and fortune.  One scene is especially memorable, not to me, but hey!  Starlight and her lover, Lexington, have sex while Starlight chats breathlessly on the phone with a pastor she contemplates later seducing. Now how stupid is that!!  Come on!! give me a break!!! Grace's battle with forgiveness and her dilemma about opening her heart to Conner's son and to her spiritually lost, power-hungry sister makes even this too-long novel an enjoyable read. 
If you have not read, KIMBERLA LAWSON ROBY - LOVE, HONOR, AND BETRAY - $11.99 - Love, Honor, and Betray then you need to get this one too.    He is truly a low down dirty dog, but he keeps trying over and over again), and his wife, Charlotte.  She is pissed and I mean pissed.  A woman who ignores a child the way she does in this book, makes me pissed, but this is one of Roby’s best and I love all of her books.  Man, people will do anything in the church.   
Got another one I’m reading too.  I read about four or five books at a time.  Yes, it’s crazy, but remember, I love, love books and cain’t get enough of them!!!
DIJORN MOSS - THE RETREAT - $7.79 - - - While working at the library on my vacation, I noticed this book and borrowed it and brought it for my kindle.  Have not started reading it yet, but the back cover gives you some insight about what men talk about at a Christian men’s retreat.  Well, why not find out.  I may learn something new and it’s always exciting to find a new author, especially a black brother.    
If you have wondered what goes on at a men’s retreat, author Dijorn Moss gives readers an in-depth look into the lives of four men who have looked for answers in all the wrong places.  Quincy, Jamal, Will and Chauncey try their best to be men of God, but it’s not easy when each one of them have questions about affairs, lying, illness and anything else the devil throws at them.   These four men are all at a crossroads in their lives. Will they lay their burdens down at the cross, or will they choose paths that will cause more harm than good? It will all be revealed at the men’s retreat, where they learn that they need God and his wisdom more than ever.


I remember when I met OMAR TYREE at a the Black Expo in Washington, DC.  Not only was he fine, but so intelligent and very nice.  He was promoting his book, CAPITAL CITY: THE CHRONICLES OF A D.C. UNDERWORLD - $1.50 PAPERBACK - Capital City: The Chronicles of a D.C. Underworld, and I brought it.  Will have to go back and remind myself what it is about, but the next time I saw him, at the Philadelphia Book Fair, he was promoting FLYY GIRL - $7.99, and I fell in love with him again.  The story of Tracy from her sixth birthday party in 1977 to her 17th birthday growing up in the middle-class Philadelphia suburb of Germantown. The daughter of a pharmacist and a dietitian, she is pretty and intelligent, armed with solid self-esteem and a sassy mouth. Like most of her friends, she's also boy crazy, and readers watch as her physical maturation leads to increasing sexual activity. While experiencing the indulgent, hip-hop 1980s and the insidious effects of the cocaine economy that flourishes in black communities, Tracy must also come to terms with her parents' separation. 
This second book of his, written in a language that I understood living in DC, reminded me of another author who also spoke to me, Terry Macmillan.  The conversations between the young people trying to figure out their sexuality with words and phases that I’m sure you will understand, made me feel not necessarily left out because I was older, but kind of comfortable because I understood what they were saying.  Some books when you read them you don’t quite know how it relates to you.  It was honest and to the point, which is many reason I like all types of books.  At some point in my life, a book reminds me of my past and future and gives me some good dreams at night.  Some areas of the book were sketchy and some of the cussing was not needed, but the point came across.  Get the book and remember your past. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Yeah!!! Books! and more Books!!

Number 67

I cannot believe that I started this blog in January 2010.  I started this blog because I am cheap and my money was getting tighter and tighter by the month.  With tuition, electric bills going thru the damn roof!,(Some people down here in South Carolina call it "the light bill," which I never understood since electric covers not just the lights), dog food and my food just shot the hell up and now gas at $4.00 a gallon.  The so call experts, Oprah, Dr. Oz and your own doctor tell you to eat more fruits and vegetables.  Hell, have they seen the price of grapes, oranges, and collard greens?  Do they and the Food Network gurus shop at Safeway, Giant, Shoppers Food Warehouse or Wal Mart?  Do they realize that I brought four and I mean “4” oranges at $4.98 a small bag!  Do they understand?  I don't think so!  Homey, don't play that!! It's getting harder and harder to pay for things, but we cannot give up.  Remember, I’m on the Dave Ramsey/Michelle Singletary get out of debt mantra.  I have got to stick to that plan and I’m winning little by little.  Especially with God's help.  I'm winning!!!

Boy, I had dreams when I started this blog and will continue to dream BIG.  I am determined to get all of you and more people in subscribing to my blog and buying and reading books, especially when the price is right.  Me, a lover of Books and Kids.  I'm just loving it!!! Books and more Books.

First and foremost, I would like to give “Big, Big Props” to Wendy Raven McNair. 

She has three books on Amazon and we need you to buy them and please, pretty please, submit a write up on Amazon.  Did you know that the more you and your family and friends submit a write up on Amazon, it boost sales in book? 

Also, please write up something on Amazon about my blog.  Let me know what you think and if I can do more or less.  We all need your help.  Here are her books.  Please buy.

If you like fantasy movies, you will love this story of “Love in Fantasy.”  Dreams do come true even if you do not believe in them.  Love does exist, even if you do not believe in it.  Take this ride with Adisa and Micah, it will remind you that Love and Dreams are real and, at the end of the day, you can be happy.  We need “happy” doing this time in our lives.  It keeps us going. 

WENDY RAVEN McNAIR – ASLEEP (FIRST HALF) (Asleep trilogy) - $2.99 - - - ASLEEP [First Half] (Asleep trilogy) and ASLEEP (Second Half) (Asleep trilogy) - $2.99 ASLEEP [Second Half] (Asleep trilogy)- - - Adisa Summers doesn't know her boyfriend, Micah Alexander, can fly. Micah's odd emotionless behavior, rigid posture, and vacant eyes are mysteries sending mixed messages to Adisa. When a flash of lightning sends a tree crashing down on her, Adisa is shocked to see Micah actually flying to her rescue!  In an instant, Adisa is in his arms, looking up at the sky over his shoulder as they fly parallel to the ground. Micah shifts, shielding her completely with his body. As the tree explodes against Micah's back, Adisa feels him shudder with the impact and the air fills with wood chips and sawdust. Miraculously, they aren't smashed into the ground. They safely continue flying.  Micah finally begins to open up to Adisa about his secret life as a super being and she discovers another shocking secret… Micah burns for her--literally as well as figuratively. 

WENDY RAVEN McNAIR – AWAKE - $6.99 - - - In part 2, Adisa and Micah's saga continues as the teen couple race against time to save Micah. However, conflict interferes with their efforts as well as other forces in the super world. When Adisa tries to secretly meet the parents who abandoned her, an explosive confrontation with Micah drives the couple apart and threatens to destroy them both. Adisa must conquer her fears and take a stand now that she's finally awake.

BLACK ARTEMIS – PICTURE ME ROLLIN - $5.99 - - - In this hardcore novel of love and betrayal, a female ex-con moved by the power, poetry, and dangerous passion of Tupac Shakur has plans to play it straight and do the right thing for her future survival. But her lover Jesus, the man she went to prison for on a gun possession charge, is intent on bringing her back into his game. She finds herself caught between inescapable yet contradictory forces-the passion for the streets and the inspiration of her conscience, just like her idol Pac. With righteous anger to burn, she's got to pull her life together before it's too late.

LAKISHIA N. SMITH – WHAT EVERY HAPPENED 2 MY KIND – $15.00 Paperback - - - The story starts slow, and I’m not much for continuing to read a book if after the first 50 pages it does not catch me, I dumped the book.  Sometimes I come back.  Then a few weeks later, I got into the “Hood Love,” mood and it worked.  When King and Roscoe arrive, it’s on.  What Ever Happened 2 My King

Now, I need the second part and here it is:

LAKISHIA N. SMITH – LIFE’S PAINS DESTINY’S GAIN $11.70 - - - When I got the first one, I thought, “wow,” she is pretty good, so let’s see if there is anything else out there from her.  On another note, both books came out in 2005 and 2006.
Leesha McFadden, from Westport Projects, located in Baltimore, Maryland has already proven to the world that it's not where you're from its where you plan to go; growing up in one of B-more's most debilitated neighborhoods that holds very little hope of survival or success, this young heroine becomes a very triumphant novelist. Leesha's all grown up now, but does she finally possess the ability to make grown up decisions?

Born and raised in the community of Flatbush located in Brooklyn, New York; young, beautiful, and yet quite fragile, Jasmine aka Cinnamon, is the perfect definition of the slogan hard knock life. From the ghastly relationship with her estranged mother, to the disappearance of her dead beat baby-daddy, this young casualty faces the unthinkable and is sentenced to do a-hella time at the Rikers Island Prison for Women.
Both ladies meet up on the inside and struggle to survive the rough, tough, grounds of Rikers. Will they survive? This page turner is full of drama, emotion, chaotic twist and most importantly life's lesson.
L. A. BANKS – FINDERS KEEPERS – (DARK AVENGERS SERIES) - $1.99 - - - I love vampires.  Whether it’s Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff (He played a mean Frankenstein.  You can’t tell me you did not like that look with his eyes that tells you he was ready to kick ass;), Frank Langella (He played a sexy vampire.  I just loved when he came into the living room and swooshed the caped around his neck, which also swooshed the damsel in distress, and then I wished it was me.)  I get a lick our of vampires.  They are so smoooooth!!!!

MARY MONROE – MAMA RUBY - $9.99 - - - Mama Ruby
An unforgettable tale featuring Mama Ruby, the indomitable heroine of her acclaimed novel  Before I get into this novel, here’s a write up of THE UPPER ROOM - $4.99The Upper Room  just in case you want to read it first - - - Ruby Montgomery, an obese, indomitable character who steals her best friend's baby daughter and flees to rural Florida, where she establishes herself as an almost mythical figure. The dialogue and setting are reminiscent of Zora Neale Hurston, but the story has a bizarre, violent edge, like reading a Stephen King novel, scary and weird. Fantastic and exaggerated, the novel may seem dated in its descriptions of race and sex, but it is a candid portrayal of the cold-blooded yet fascinating Mama Ruby. 
Mama Ruby is the continuing story of Ruby.  Growing up in Shreveport, Louisiana, Ruby Jean Upshaw is the kind of girl who knows what she wants and knows how to get it. By the time she’s fifteen, Ruby has developed a taste for fast men and cheap liquor, and not even her preacher daddy can set her straight. Most everyone in the neighborhood knows you don’t cross Ruby. Only Othella Mae Cartier, daughter of the town tramp, understands what makes Ruby tick.
When Ruby discovers she’s in the family way, she’s scared for the first time in her life. After hiding her growing belly with baggy dresses, Ruby secretly gives birth to a baby girl at Othella’s house. With few choices, Othella talks Ruby into giving the child away-and with the help of a shocking revelation, convinces Ruby to run off with her to New Orleans.
But nothing can erase Ruby’s memories of the child she lost-or quell her simmering rage at Othella for persuading her to let her precious baby go. If there’s a fine line between best friend and worst nightmare, Ruby is surely treading it. Because someday, there will be a reckoning. And when it comes, Othella will learn the hard way that no one knows how to exact revenge quite like Ruby Jean Upshaw. 
OK, don’t’ blame me, it’s the title of the book, KERMESHEA HILLIARD EVANS – GOING TO CHURCH TO CATCH HELL - $9.95 - - - Growing up as a Preacher's Kid was not all that it appeared to be for this author. The fancy cars, private jets, "Lifestyles of the Rich and Religious"; lavish luxuries, all with an extreme emotional price. Having spent her teens and early twenties organizing and building a multi-million dollar, mega church ministry alongside her parents, she decided to walk away, a decision that ripped through the fabric of her entire family. A disowned daughter, damaged relationships, and deception from the pulpit, but why? The personal story of the turmoil’s, tears and triumphs of Kermeshea Elaine Hilliard Evans are uncovered in the book "Going To Church To Catch Hell." This book is a testament of emotional healing and the power of forgiveness.

Got to get two in for Black History - - -

DANIEL BLACK – The Sacred Place: A novel- $13.99 Hardback - - - While spending the summer of 1955 with relatives in Money, Miss., 14-year-old Chicago-raised Clement unleashes hell when he buys a root beer at the general store and refuses to place the nickel in the white female cashier's hand, leaving it instead on the counter. Though his sharecropping grandparents and aunt and uncle try desperately to protect him—his grandfather shoots and kills the men who come looking for the boy—Clement is abducted and his death is inevitable. Patriarch Jeremiah Johnson's pain and anger bring him to call a town meeting, and the town's blacks decide to stand up against generations of murders, lynching’s, rapes and other violence.

DANIEL BLACK - PERFECT PEACE - $12.99 - - - Black (The Sacred Place) explores the fateful decision of Emma Jean Peace to raise her seventh son, Perfect, as the daughter she has always wanted. Her plan, nutty as it is, works out until Perfect is eight years old and his blind older brother, Bartimaeus, makes an innocent discovery about his sister's body. Soon after, Perfect's friends begin talk of womanhood, prompting Emma Jean to reveal to Perfect the truth. So begins an education for Perfect—rechristened Paul—on manhood while his small Arkansas town casts an unforgiving eye on its newest curiosity. While the rural South backdrop is overly familiar and the dialogue is painfully hoary (What chu talkin' 'bout, Emma Jean?), Black manages a nuanced exploration of sexual identity and social structures without elevating his characters to angels or martyrs.

Monday, May 2, 2011

And their off!!! Black History Year!!


I am going to make one more comment on “milk.”  I went to buy my weekly gallon and the price actually went down.  Instead of $4.00, I paid $3.43.  OK, OK, I know I need to get off of this rant and rage on milk, but come on; it’s all I got left to rant about.  I cannot rant about the price of gas, even though that went up from last Sunday when I brought it at $3.48 to $3.85.  Damn! Damn!  Damn!  Then my electric bill arrived in my e-mail.  You know, since we are on a “technology high!!!” all your bills come thru your e-mails letting you know, “Hey, remember me? You owe us! 

Remember there was a time when you received bills in the mail and tossed it around or put it in some boxes labeled, “Pay today,” “Pay on Pay Day,”  “Pay when I get the money,” or “Hell, I’ll pay it when I get good and ready.”  Or, my favorite from a girlfriend of mine, “Hell, are they crazy!! They want the money next month on the 15?  I got to get my hair and nails done for the party on the 14th.”  “Shoot, I’ll put it aside and pay it when they are about to cut it off, damn! I got more things to do with my money”

Yeah, what the hell were they thinking?  They actually thought she was going to pay the bill and on time, yeah! Right! 

Let’s get to some books. 
I want to thank ABDUL-MALIK (ALAN CRAMER) - Author of “THE LIFE” - $2.99 for giving me “props” in supporting our African American authors thru my blog. 
Everyone assumes I’m just promoting their books.  I do buy them.  I have managed to get other people to buy them.  I do tell people, not just in my blog but at every single book fair, book show, radio and any other communication arena I come to.  We have so many books covering all topics in the world and we don’t’ realize how much our writing effects other people in the US and overseas.  Don’t stop writing.  Don’t give up.  You can and will do it.  I still plan on receiving 1,000 subscriptions before the end of the year.  That is a lot of books, but I love it!!!
Here’s a rap up of Abdul-Malik’s book - - - Detective Honey Sinclair is a highly decorated New York City police officer. She's also the daughter of the biggest crack dealer the Bronx has ever seen. But Honey wants no part of the LIFE. To escape she became a New York City cop. Using her street smarts, she quickly rises to detective.  Her first case is a murder that everyone thinks is a drug hit. But something's not right. Soon Honey realizes the truth. But when the clues start leading to family and friends, Honey has some hard choices to make.  Does she uphold the law or be true to the streets. Because in the streets, the only law is kill or be killed.  

JA’NESE DIXON – BEFORE BLACK DIAMOND – 99 cents - - - Camille Blackwell is an undercover FBI agent posing as a jewelry purchaser in an international diamond trading company. Her assignment is to identify the domestic players in the Imperial Dynasty, an international terrorist group suspected of trafficking conflict diamond.  “Before Black Diamond” is a collection of short stories about a few of the key characters in Black Diamond. Each story will take you from the CEO of an international firm to a young African boy who faces danger at the hands of terrorists to protect his family.  Readers will meet the characters before they were left with no choice but to do what they had to do, leaving dead bodies and a half million dollars unaccounted for.

JA’NESE DIXON – BLACK DIAMOND - $2.99 - - - Camille Blackwell, an undercover FBI agent, poses as a jewelry purchaser in an international diamond trading company in hopes of identifying the domestic players in a vicious rebel group suspected of trafficking conflict diamonds. The Bureau requests CIA renegade Marc Fulton's assistance with sweeping international intelligence to identify the major rebel organizations with finances and stateside connections strong enough to evade criminal prosecution, despite Camille's objections. Sparks fly when Marc and Camille meet, their attraction is instant and tense. However, both resolve to focus on the case. But when Camille receives an encrypted memory stick from a murdered co-worker, Marc may be the only person she can trust.  True love, like black diamonds, is rare and precious; but when murder and a persistent criminal threaten a frail relationship, can love triumph? In a borderless game of cat and mouse, will a chance at happily ever after be thwarted at the deadly scheme of the faceless leader of the Imperial Dynasty?

KAMEISHA JENKINS – A PRICE TO PAY FOR EVERYTHING – 99 Cents - - - This is a riveting debut novel that offers readers a peek into the drama-laden lives of its colorful characters. What does a morally corrupt socialite wife, a self proclaimed diva with serious mental issues and family drama and a wealthy bachelor turned unwilling father have in common? A price, A Big Price! The novel allows readers to discover the true expense of happiness as its characters weave a comedic and sometimes tragic tale of discovery. Filled with family drama, relationship challenges, and life affirming moments, A Price to pay for everything invites readers to ask, what are we willing to pay to be happy?

TIFFANY L. WARREN – WOLF IN MINISTER’S CLOTHING – 99 Cents - - - This prequel to the Bestseller, “WHAT A SISTA SHOULD DO - $8.99,” tells the story of how young Taylor Johnson is lured into a web of lies by slickster Luke Hastings. His wife, Yvonne, is suspicious of the new church member with the Beyoncesque physique. Find out how this tempestuous love triangle began.

K. ELLIOTT – DEAR SUMMER (REAL IN THE STREETS) – 99 Cents - - - Tommy DuPree is fresh out of prison with a new hustle selling stolen luxury cars. A business that proves to be lucrative and allows him to fly under the radar and clear of his drug dealing past. Life couldn't be better for Tommy with cars, money and two girlfriends, until he sells a car to some cross town drug dealers and one of them gets busted in the car and claims that Tommy set him up. Enter Summer, Tall and Beautiful with the body of a Victoria Secret Model. She's the side chick but she wants to be number one and she's frustrated. Summer meets and hits it off with Q, Unknown to her, Q is the leader of the Cross town drug dealing gang that wants Tommy Dead. Tommy has to prove he isn't a rat, but at the same time defending his manhood because Q and his boys are sure to kill him.   

I swear this sounds like a Miami Vice, Treme’ or Wire TV show.  Hey, you never know.  

ANTHONY WHYTE – CRAVE ALL LOSE - $1.00 - - - Vincent lost his job and moved in with his mother. His friend Tyriq is a big time drug dealer and willing to sponsor him into a drug cartel. Vincent is reluctant, but his baby mama is nagging and bills are piling up. Hustling is the way. But his long-time friend (and an experienced hustler) Spoon is against Vincent getting down. Vincent ignores Spoon's advice and joins Tyriq. Vincent quickly starts stacking major figures. The never-ending gwap, expensive cars, jewelry and fast women prove addictive. What he craves could be his downfall. The higher he climbs the more envy he encounters. Vincent is caught in a costly, ugly and vicious war. Younger soldiers are ready to kill in order to rise. Does Vincent have what it takes to succeed at this most ruthless, dirty game?
OK, let’s move to romance.  Sometimes, you can no longer take the hood route.
V. GREEN – WHEN DESTINIES MEET – $3.99 - - - For years Pamela has given up on true love and put her entire focus on her career until she nearly works herself to death. While on a forced leave of absence from her thriving perfume business she is offered a second chance at love and life.

L. Y. MARLOW – COLOR ME BUTTERFLY: A NOVEL INSPIRED BY ONE FAMILY’S JOURNAL FROM TRAGEDY TO TRIUMP - $11.99 - - - The last thing Eloise Bingham wanted was to leave the comforts of her South Carolina home and family. But at the end of World War II, the young wife follows her husband, Isaac, to Philadelphia, only to experience his sinister and violent temper. Eloise’s children and their children and grandchildren will face their own trials over the next sixty years: Mattie, who has lived in her mother Eloise’s shadow, finds it takes a life-changing tragedy to help her break free; Lydia, Mattie’s strong-willed daughter, summons the resolve to rise above the cycle of abuse; and finally, Treasure, Lydia’s lively daughter, has the chance to be the first to escape her family’s destructive legacy.  It will take unconditional love, old-fashioned family values, faith, and fearless determination already embedded in each woman’s DNA to triumph over a life plagued with unspeakable pain.

Got to get one in for Black History - - -

E. LYNN HARRIS – INVISIBLE LIFE: A NOVEL – There are books to read and enjoy over and over again.  Then there are books to keep for life because when you read it, years will go by and you will read it again and again.  You never forget the characters.  They seem to stick in the back of your mind and you wonder why? We lost E. Lynn Harris last year, but his stories from all of his books will always, always be in our souls and hearts.  He writes with a softness and intelligence that even if you do not agree with his politics or lifestyle, you still agree with his characters.  You know them and have known them all your lives.

This trilogy follows Raymond Tyler Jr. from his college days through his years as a successful young attorney. It is in college that he encounters his first homosexual experience, at a time when he has a steady girlfriend. When he takes his first job in New York City, he settles into a bisexual lifestyle but becomes engaged to Nicole, the other central figure in the series, who ambitiously pursues a show business career while searching for the perfect man. Raymond ultimately chooses a gay lifestyle but unlike some of his friends, who are comfortable with their sexual preference, he reflects on his choice. E. Lynn Harris has created a body of different characters, a group of friends and family members who admirably demonstrate a continuity of love and support. This is a work about young middle-class black people who, regardless of sexual preference, are looking for the perfect partner. For those who are gay or bisexual, there is the added pressure of disapproval from many corners and some very funny moments.