National Black Book Festival

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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It's getting Hot in Here!!!


NUMBER 82 
Well, it’s been another week and I made it.  Did not have to hurt anyone.  Did not have to cuss someone out.  Did not have to pull what little bit of hair I have out and did not have to go around and say, Damn,! Why oh why are they tripping harder than a rock?  Has the world truly, truly gone mad beyond Twilight Zone!  Is it me? Or is it in the drinking water, sodas, liquor, McDonald’s hamburgs, the fake fish.  You know good and ding dong well it ain’t real fish, and people get to the drive thru of fast foods like McDonald's and actually ask that question, “what kind of fish is it?  I just wish I was on the other end of that drive thru and scream, “It ain’t no real fish! It’s made from something, but it ain’t real!!! ‘Let it go, just let it go and put your order in.”  (I always wanted to say that at a drive thru - I need help myself, don’t I)  
Or is it that we are just lost in a jungle of overgrown plants (crazy people), who feed like vampires on a blood lust hunt!  What is it?   You are probably wondering too.  Don’t.  It’s not worth the worry.  With Democratic and Republican’s having acid and mushroom trips, earthquakes and hurricanes in DC, (Speaking of earthquakes.  My daughter called me last week, “Mommy, I don’t believe it!  I lived in South Carolina for 6 and half years and no problems with hurricanes and here I am in DC, with an earthquake on Tuesday and a hurricane coming on Friday!! Don’t you feel sorry for me?”  No, I don’t (lol), sorry, glad it’s not me!, but in the end, she is OK), economy going down and gas going up, what is one to do but either go “crazy african” or pray harder.  I’m praying harder.
I’m rambling on too much and really I had a very good week.  I managed to catch up on reading and I always, always enjoy going into some else’s mind and/or world to get away from this world, at least for a little while.  Let’s get to some books.
On the second day of the National Book Club Conference, Oh, wait, I forgot to give a shout out to ABDUL-MALIK (ALAN CRAMER), one of my biggest fan of my blog on Amazon and a subscriber.  I want to let you guys know about his books, which I have all of them. Now, his first book, GOD HELPS THOSE... - $1.00 - God Helps Those..., did have a few spelling errors and some points of the plot were foreseeable and at times unrealistic.  A young, college educated black man smokes his first joint and gets hooks on freebasing, of course his life, in which he has a good job, a beautiful girlfriend and living the good life, it’s going to get ruin, that’s obvious, but will he get back on track or die trying.  I know you heard the story before and there maybe a few issues with the book, but I’m going to let you know, nobody is perfect.  It’s his first and it has some wisdom and the plot is pretty good.  Give him a chance, he does get better.  His other book, THE LIFE - $0.99 - The Life, this time, the brother does a mystery with a sister name Honey Sinclair, a New York detective with a father in jail for running a crack trade in the same neighborhood that she grow up in and now she is trying to solve the murders of some “fly girls.”   Don’t be fool this time, Cramer got it right.  One of my favorite murder mysteries with an Urban cool.    
His third book, TWO WRONGS DON’T MAKE A RIGHT - 99 cents - Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right Now come on, three books for the price of $3.00??  Give him a chance and let him know what you actually think about his books.  I do not think you will disappointed.  
Unassuming Transit clerk Andre Steele (aren’t they all?) falls hard when he meets Leigh who’s half his age. They become involved, but Leigh keeps a neighborhood bum, Jaheem, on the side as her real love interest. Hoping to impress Leigh, Andre embezzles money from his employer. What Andre doesn't realize is that Leigh and Jaheem are getting rich on his songs, which have become a huge success under Leigh's name.
No one has submitted a review yet on this book, so, please write something on Amazon.  Tell him the truth and let him know if you like it or don’t like it.  Authors love to receive comments, it makes them better writers.
This week I was catching up with the some books I got free at the National Book Club Conference.  As I was stating above, the second day was the Romance Panel.  We met and listen to Donna Hill, Kimberly Kaye Terry, J.D. Mason, Beverly Jenkins and Brenda Jackson.  All of them are my favorite, except for one and it's because it was the first time I heard about her, KIMBERLY KAYE TERRY.   I got and read the third one in the series, TO LOVE A WILDE - $3.99 -  To Love a Wilde (Kimani Romance) - - - Yasmine has always been in love with Holt, one of three brothers (all three were adopted and they are White, Native American and African American), Holt is white.  Yasmine
I’ll tell you what’s new.  Unlike Brenda Jackson (What a Westmoreland Wants - 81 cents - What a Westmoreland Wants (Harlequin Desire); Spontaneous - 86 cents - Spontaneous (Harlequin Blaze); and my favorite motorcycle man, THORN’S CHALLENGE - Thorn's Challenge (Harlequin Desire), (if you have not read it, I have read it four times, please let me know how in the hell did they do it on the motorcycle?  I asked that question of Mrs. Jackson at the Romance Panel and she told me I had to learn more about motorcycles and many women there afterwards asked me, “Which book is that in?  I had those women going crazy about my question and it worked, sales went up.  
Mrs. Jackson’s sexual scenes are soft and supple and discreet, where as Mrs. Terry’s will have you saying, “Well I’ll be damn!!.  She is straight up sexually stimulating.  Some of those scenes should not be read in bed or near a man you have wanted in a long time.  Watch out!!! Zane and her can hurt some body!!
I will let you sip on that and will talk about her other two in this series in the next blog.  I’m sweating now!!!
Got to stick on one for Black History Year.  
I’m sure some of you are not into romance novels.  Yeah! Yeah! I know, it makes you feel like those “Harlequin Romance” novels of the 60’s.  No, you may not have been born during those times, neither was I, but you remember those little books of white couples with the woman dropping over the man and her hair flying in the wind as if she is pushing him away, but deep down she wants him badly with yearning in her soul (I read that somewhere, don't laugh!!, even thou it's funny!)  where the couple have to go thru the stupidest, trying struggles before they realize they are in love and kiss.  Man, it took forever for them to kiss, upset me sometimes.  I gave up on reading them, until I was introduced to black romance writers by a friend of mine who has the largest selection of romance novels I have ever seen.  I went to a literary dinner function and met BEVERLY JENKINS.  After my friend told me to get her book and read it (I was blackmailed to read it I want you to know!!), I said Ok, Ok, leave me along.  I got boocoo hooked and I love the historical aspect of her books.  It was on and it’s still on.  You once again will not, repeat, not be disappointed.  Start with the first one, NIGHT SONG - $10.00 Paperback - Night Song- - The cover looks like some woman just about to be  kissed by a strong, handsome black man.  Don’t tell me you don’t want that to happen, especially when he has no shirt on, sheeze!! Just get the book!!
Cara Lee Henson knows no soldier can be trusted to stay in one place, especially Sergeant Chase Jefferson (I’m sure he’s the one on the cover.  Not bad, not bad at all!!).  Cara is a independent Kansas schoolteacher and will not let Jefferson’s advances keep her from losing her job, but you know underneath, she is smouldering with desires and Chase has, of course, never wanted a woman so badly.  I like to know, does that really, really, really happen?  

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Damn!! what a day, but at least I got my books!!!


NUMBER 81
I’m hanging in there, but there are got damn days that I just want to get a taser and cut into their brains and find out what the hell is wrong with them.  Why cause so much drama over nothing!!  Why go thru all of that hell and high water to make someone else feel like crap because you do.  Why are you being a 1st class chump?  Why go thru all that?  For some chump change to get something you do not need and cannot afford mentally, spiritually or physically!
You mean to tell me you don’t know how to pray or get help from either God, a statue of nimrod in the sphinx or something else that stands 8 feet high?  Anything to calm you down.  Just stop crapping all over me and others.  We did not cause your situation to get screwed up royally painful.  We were not there and don’t want to be there, just let the crap go.  I and others are moving on and got other truly more important things to do, like have a great life.  Figure it out, you anal nut!!!
OK, got that out of my system.  So, let’s get to some books.
Below is a listing of E. Lynn Harris books.  It’s 1994 and I was at the hairdresser in DC when one of the girls lent me his first book.  I had always heard about being gay and/or bisexual and also knew, from being around my mother, grandmother and other elders, that it was not talked about.  Probably because years later I found out that my Uncle was gay.  It was not a big deal to me at the time because I did not see him that way.  I saw a man who loved me and his friend loved me.  Didn’t see the hurt, anger, frustration and hidden world they lived in.  He and his friend (that’s what I called him), were, to me at least, great cooks and love to tell stories and I loved them.  When my uncle’s “friend” died, I saw this man go from up to down into the lowest pits a human can go and that hurt me, but I did not know what to do and my mother and grandmother kept me and my step brothers at a distance.  It was not until years later that I got to see my Uncle again, and this time, he was better, but not the same.  Never the same again.  This book reminded me of the struggle he must have gone thru and I will never understand why we just don’t accept people as they are.  God will see and discuss what ever he wants with them in his own time, let them be, unless they are hurting someone, let them be.  We need to more forward not backward.
The first book, INVISIBLE LIFE: A NOVEL, showcases 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. Harris has created a body of diverse 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. 
The trilogy
INVISIBLE LIFE: A NOVEL - $10.91 Paperback Invisible Life: A Novel
JUST AS I AM - $10.21 Paperback Just As I Am: A Novel
AND THIS TOO SHALL PASS” - $10.95.     And This Too Shall Pass: A Novel
The rest of his work continues stories of accepting yourself and GOD, which for some is easy and others it just right down crazy:  
IF THIS WORLD WERE MINE - $10.21 Paperback If This World Were Mine: A Novel
ABIDE WITH ME - $11.18 - Paperback Abide With Me: A Novel
NOT A DAY GOES BY - $$11.99 (John and Yancey are introduced it this book)
ANY WAY THE WIND BLOWS - $9.99 (John Basil Henderson, NFL Player and Yancey Harrington Braxton, Broadway star - those characters will having you saying, “Damn, are they crazy!!!) You know, I think I’m going to read this again.  
A LOVE OF MY OWN - $11.99 (Raymond is back.  Who do you think was his pass lover?)
WHAT BECOMES OF A BROKENHEARTED: A MEMOIR- $11.10 Paperback - His story about his life.
I SAY A LITTLE PRAYER - $9.99 - I Say a Little Prayer
JUST TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE - $11.99 - Let’s just say, “Steammmy!, hilarious, and very real.” 
BASKETBALL JONES - $11.99 - Another man hiding what he is and marrying a woman to cover it it.  When will they learn, when!!!

MAMA DEAREST - $7.99 - That “off a few hooks,” Yancey is back and just as stupetrify as every. 
IN MY FATHER’S HOUSE - $9.99fashionista royalty and the owners, Bentley L. Dean and his beautiful partner Alexandra, know it. But even Picture Perfect isn’t immune from hard times, so when Sterling Sneed, a rich, celebrity party planner promises to pay a ludicrously high fee for some models, Bentley finds he can’t refuse. Even though the job is not exactly a photo shoot, Bentley agrees to supply fifteen gorgeous models as eye candy for an “A” list party to look good, be charming and, well, entertain the guests. They don’t have to do anything they don’t want to, but...

His models are pros and he figures they can handle the pressure, until one drops out and Bentley asks his protege Jah, a beautiful kid who Bentley treats as if he were his own son, to substitute. Suddenly, the stakes are much higher, particularly when Jah falls in love with the hottest African American movie star in America. Seth Sinclair is very handsome, very famous, and very married—and his closeted gay life makes him very dangerous as well. Can Bentley’s fatherly guidance save Jah from making a fatal mistake?
Got to stick on one for Black History Year.  
CHESTER HIMES - THE COLLECTED STORIES OF CHESTER HIMES - $20.00 - - - I went looking for this book because I was watching “A Rage In Harlem” with Forest Whitaker, the late Gregory Hines, Danny Glover and Robin Givens.  It reminded me of my mother’s love for this author and and his books.  He was one of the first African American writers she actually met and she enjoys reading his works because, as she says, “a black man knows how to write crime, “white people are OK, but black folks get down and dirty."  So, you know I started collecting his work and also became a big fan.  He is another original urban fiction writer with serious mystery plots that you still to this day come back to.  He wrote this book while in prison and it shows the ranges from racism, poverty, domestic violence, and of course, it’s women who cause all of these “good, troubled black men” to lose their minds and commit crimes, yeah, right!!! We have that control you know!! So they say!


Sunday, August 14, 2011

More on NBBC


NUMBER 80 
I am still unpacking and going thru my massive purchase of books from my trip to the National Book Club Conference.  It’s so much, but I’m loving every feel and smell of each book.  I did buy them in e-book format as well so that I can carry them either way and still be happy as a drunken clam.  Life is good, real good!!!

On Friday, my book club members and I started our morning at the Bebe Moore Campbell Memorial Award honoring TINA McELROY ANSA and an acknowledgement from R. M. JOHNSON for E. LYNN HARRIS.  Just as with L. A. Banks, we will miss them and will continue to miss them.  I met all of them before and they did more to add to my life and I am more than grateful that I got a chance to talk and meet with them as well as buy and promote their books.  Ms. Ansa and Mr. Johnson talked about Bebe and E. Lynn like they were their best friend and adviser.  At one point, Mrs. Ansa had to choked back tears because she remembered so much about their friendship.  R. M. Johnson informed us that this man helped him to become a better writer, husband and friend.    Buy all of their books, you don’t have to be gay or straight or anything, you just have to be human.  The experiences they write about includes everyone, not just blacks, but all.  They got it right thru their books and you can feel it.  You will enjoy the hell out of them, take my word for it.  
I’m going to give you Ms. Campbell book listing and tomorrow will give you E. L.Harris.  Once again, you will no way be disappointed.  

As I told you earlier, there were so many authors and so many books it will take me a few blogs to get thru to all of them, but all in all, you will love it and I mean love it!!!!  

You may not be in the mood to read Mrs. Campbell's books, but at least try one of them and then get back to your other “I’m in the mood” book or books.  
BEBE MOORE CAMPBELL - YOUR BLUES AIN’T LIKE MINE: A NOVEL - $12.50 Hardcover - - - I read this book years ago when it came out and it was just about the time, 1995, that I was very hungry for books by black authors and just happen to see her book in the store.  Not many stores for a while carried books by black authors, you had to hunt and stalk the bookstore owners to get more.  That was my trade, stalking book store owners to get with the program and sell books by us.  I’m still doing it today, even at Barnes and Noble.  You don’t think I’m going to let them sly just because Borders closed?  No ding dong way!!!  It was also the time my history class was going over the Emmett Till case.  It is not an easy read, just like people are not too happy with “The Help” book and movie.  Either way, times have changed, but times have not changed.  Campbell does give both sides, whites and blacks who are dirt poor in Mississippi, some humanness, some compassion.  
Moving quickly and believably from the eve of integration in rural Mississippi to the present-day street gangs in Chicago's housing projects, Campbell captures the gulf between pre-and post-civil rights America; her story, starting with the murder of a young black man whose trial, argued before an all-white jury (Does it remind you of John Grishman's A Time To kill - A Time to Kill: A Novel?  Then the movie with Samuel Jackson?  Locate that movie and tell me if this book does not reminds you of something), captures national attention, shows us how far we have come and yet suggests we have not come so far after all. When word gets out that black teenager Armstrong Todd was talking French to Lily Cox, the Cox men kill him. Clayton Pinochet, the local newspaper reporter whose father is the most powerful and reactionary man in town, secretly tips off the national press; the men are arrested for what in previous times would have been a permissible crime. Their acquittal makes it clear that the system doesn't provide justice, and life never returns to normal for anyone. There are details, such as the advent of TV, the polio vaccine, a Faulkner novel, Vietnam, women's lib and Oprah!, which add to the richness of the story. 
Your Blues Ain't Like Mine (Hardcover)

SINGING IN THE COMEBACK CHOIR - $11.70 Paperback - - - Maxine McCoy has made it. She has overcome the odds she faced as a black woman from a working-class Philadelphia neighborhood to become a successful television producer in Los Angeles. She loves her hardworking, ambitious husband and is pregnant with her first child. She does worry, though, that the shows she produces are of no social value. But even this concern drops away when she receives a phone call from the caretaker of her seventy-year-old grandmother and learns she has to return to Philadelphia. Orphaned at an early age, Maxine grew up with her grandmother Lindy, a singing star. Lindy is now a smoking, drinking, embittered women whose glorious voice has atrophied from disuse, and the house that used to swing with laughter and music is dim and lifeless. Lindy's once striving neighborhood has become a blighted, crime-infested area. Yet after a few days there, Maxine realizes that Lindy and Sydenham Street itself have been the source of her own strength and success, and she is moved to help both reclaim their glory. 
WHAT YOU OWE ME - $6.00 Paperback - - - Los Angeles, l945: When Hosanna Clark, newly arrived from the farm fields of Texas, befriends Holocaust survivor Gilda Rosenstein, she opens the door to a new life for them both. Using Gilda's knowledge of cosmetics and Hosanna's energy and determination, they begin producing a line of lipsticks and lotions for black women. The two are more than partners: They are dear friends.
Then Gilda suddenly disappears, taking all the assets. Hosanna is doubly betrayed: financially ruined and emotionally bereft. When, years later, she passes away, her small cosmetics company dies with her. But Hosanna leaves behind a daughter steeped in her mother's pain: Matriece is as smart and driven as her mother and savvy enough to recognize that white firms are competing not only for black consumer dollars but for black professional talent as well. When Gilda's huge cosmetics conglomerate hires her to launch a line of black beauty products, Matriece takes on a mission to collect her mother's debt.
What You Owe Me is a stunning account of the changes we have seen in white attitudes toward blacks, but it is also a sensitive look at what betrayal-of friendship, of love-does to us all. Ultimately, it is a moving book about healing.
What You Owe Me

BROTHERS AND SISTERS - $10.25 Paperback - - - Struggling with her own personal issues after the Los Angeles riots, Esther Jackson, a black employee at a downtown bank, is heartened when a black man is hired as senior vice-president, until he sexually harasses her white friend and coworker. 
Brothers and Sisters
72 HOUR HOLD - $11.01 Paperback - - - Trina is eighteen and suffers from bi-polar disorder, making her paranoid, wild, and violent. Frightened by her own child, Keri searches for help, quickly learning that the mental health community can only offer her a seventy-two hour hold. After these three days Trina is off on her own again. Fed up with the bureaucracy and determined to save her daughter by any means necessary, Keri signs on for an illegal intervention known as The Program, launching them both on a terrifying journey.  You may not be aware, but the main reason this book was written was because Mrs. Campbell's daughter suffers from the bipolar disorder.  I'm sure it helped her right the system and understand the aliment. 
72 Hour Hold
SWEET SUMMER: GROWING UP WITH AND WITHOUT MY DAD - $10.95 Hardcover - - - A bittersweet evocation of a divided childhood, with its inevitable disappointments, family secrets, surprising discoveries, loneliness, and love, SWEET SUMMER also recalls, with breathless anticipation, living on the cusp of the social revolution of the 1960s. An achingly honest and beautiful reminder of the universal challenge of growing up and facing one's parents as an adult.
Sweet Summer : Growing up with and without My Dad
Got to stick on one for Black History Year.  
STOMPIN’ AT THE SAVOY - $13.25 Paperback - - - Children’s book - - - If you have any young children, I know they will enjoy you reading this to them.  The colors and the brightness of our people dancing and all of the famous jazz greats.  What do you think your child will ask afterwards?  “Can you tell me more and did you do the “swing” “lindy hop” or maybe you did some “break-dancing.”  You’ll figure out which.  
On the night before her big jazz dance recital, young Mindy has made up her mind not to go, she’s just too nervous. But when she finds herself transported to the Savoy Ballroom, she quickly changes her tune. Filled from wall to wall with legends of the swing era, the Savoy is a place where the dancers move like acrobats and the seats stay empty all night long. It’s an all-night party, and with all that fun going on around her, Mindy has no choice but to move her happy feet!  
After the book, get the movie "Happy Feet," end the night right!!!


Stompin' at the Savoy

Thursday, August 4, 2011

NBCC and a Tribute to L. A. Banks

NUMBER 79 
I’m back from the ATL attending the NBBC -  National Book Club Conference.  Met some of my favorite authors and a few who I saw in Houston at the NBBF.  So much to talk about and so many books I brought to read and so many more books to buy later, I’m high, just as high as a kite flying over the rainbow with no string attached.  Just flying my but off.  I’m still high from Houston, the books, the authors, and especially Earth, Wind and Fire.  Feeling too good and feeling too ecstatically happy, but lets get to some of the functions first.  It is going to take me a few blogs to get everything in and I may mention some of the authors from Houston.  I won’t let you down.  I will give you the best price and all of the books your behind can handle.  Can you handle it??  (Oh, so old school isn't’ it) 
We arrived Thursday night to attend the ATL NBBC Chocolate Social.  We, I mean Cat, Maya, Flash, Nadia, Veronica and I, a smaller group of the Literary Divas of the Low Country.  We have about 30 members and it’s still growing.  We expected to attend a grand semi-formal dinner to honor the book clubs and authors attending the conference.  What we got was a ballroom of a few authors (will discuss them later) and many speeches from authors, book club presidents and other honorees.  Some were short and to the point, others were just too long and the dinner (Hors d’oeuvre, seriously, we were expecting dinner since we paid for it!!) was disappearing fast, and when I went to get a plate and all the little food was gone, I was stuck with a small brownie and a cup of hot tea.  When I returned to the table with the girls I said, “Somebody better feed me soon!!! I”m hungry.!  Some people were wearing beautiful dresses, some dresses were higher than an plane with no gear under it, some in jeans, some in “I’m still trying to figure it out,” and some, like my group, in simple dresses.  Not quite the “semi-formal.”  
I saw three authors I met in Houston who were surprised to see me, not surprised like a stalker, just surprised and they remember me which was nice.  

CARLEEN BRICE - ORANGE MINT AND HONEY: A NOVEL - $11.99, Mr. Robert Moore, author of THE PRESIDENT’S MEN: BLACK UNITED STATES MARSHALS IN AMERICA and another of my favorite murder mystery writer, Mrs. PAMELA SAMUELS-YOUNG,  Monique D. Mensah, who I will mention her books later and Mrs. JACQUELINE LUCKETT - SEARCHING FOR TINA TURNER
You cannot complain much.  They did the best they could with the funds available.  Hey, at least I got a brownie, that’s something!!!! Let me give you a run down on the authors and their books that night.
MONIQUE D. MENSAH - INSIDE RAIN - $3.99 - - - I brought this first book in Houston at the NBBF.  Now that is one sister who knows how to dress for her body.  She smiles and very personable and friendly to everyone who came to her table.  The book has been mentioned on the Michael Baisden show and I don’t think he would waste his time and neither would I or you on a lousy book. 
After witnessing her mother’s gruesome murder as a child, she is now left piecing together the fragments of her shattered psyche as an adult. Quickly, she is drowning in years of frustration and confusion with no promise of relief. Sinister visions and undying spirits haunt Rain relentlessly, driving her deeper into darkness and lunacy. Rain’s grandmother, GiGi, tries her best to help Rain face the truth, urging her to confront her past, but the past is too painful, it’s easier to hide. As Rain struggles desperately to define herself, she's forced to brave her live-in siblings: a violent and narcissistic brother, Danny, who resents her weakness and Carmen, her promiscuous and hostile older sister, who wishes Rain would disappear. In her fragile mental state, Rain is ill-equipped to handle the chaos of their ruptured lives. When Rain, Carmen, and Danny are submerged into the horrors of prostitution, drug-addiction, domestic violence, and murder, Rain is left alone to face her internal demons and find her identity, with no one to answer to, but herself.

MONIQUE D. MENSAH - WHO IS HE TO YOU - $3.99 - - - Simone, a shockingly beautiful teen, is on the downward spiral of destruction as she battles incest and self-hatred; she finds cutting to be the only way to relieve her pain. Jessica lives the upscale lifestyle of a refined society matron. She strives to be the perfect wife, but without her husband, Ross, she would be nothing more than the abused stripper he rescued 16 years ago. Ryan, a fiery thirty-something, is quickly slipping into depression and prescription drug-addiction as her boyfriend, Anthony, artfully dangles the empty promise of marriage. As the shattered lives of three very different women collide, they find that they have one thing in common: they are all in a desperate fight to hang on to love. But when love involves incest, self-mutilation, drug-addiction and murder, will they continue to fight or will they find the strength to escape before it's too late? 

Monique has received lots and lots of great comments about both of her books and I just can’t wait to get into it.  You know I brought so many books, that I’m still unpacking and I have been back for three days.  That’s a good thing to have to do, unpack books and make a decision where to start first.  Love it, Love it!!!


TERRI D. - YESTERDAY’S LIES - $2.99 - - - This is one of the ladies that I made a McDonald’s run for in Houston and afterwards, sat down and talked a little with her.  Not much to say because my time was short being a volunteer there, but I remember her table looked very quiet and somber.  Like she was not going to push and pull you to buy her book, but when you look at her and the table, you are drawn to it so softly.  It was the same Thursday night at the Chocolate social, very laid back and very quiet.  
What Secrets Do You Keep From The One You Share Everything With? Secrets. Lies. Half-Truths. A poignant tale of a circle of close knit friends whose lives are more intertwined than they realize. That is until the blurred lines of Love, Lust and Friendship begins to reveal the half-truths and lies that exist. Will the secrets they all hold from the past ruin their friendship and lives forever?

You see what I mean, quiet.  I must have picked up 50 of her bookmarks and have passed them around my office.  So far, she has three orders already. Even the bookmark looks soft!
JACQUELINE LUCKETT - SEARCHING FOR TINA TURNER - $9.99 - - - Ms. Luckett has this long, mixture of blond/brown crinkle hair down her back but with a big semi red lipstick smile and bright eyes and funny as hell.  You can talk to her all night.  She is a “Sister friend” and this book was included in our gift packages.  Oh, did I forget to tell you that we did get a gift bag and it was filled with books, a small carry-on bag, book marks of authors works and one piece of Godiva chocolate bar, I guess that was our “Chocolate Social” surprise. 
Lena’s husband, Randall, has been climbing the corporate ladder for years, and Lena has supported him every step of the way, glad to help him and raise their two children. But now she feels as though she has lost herself in the process, and is drowning in luxury. With his goal of becoming the first black CEO of his company in reach, Randall refuses to go to therapy; and with the same determination that has led to his success, he tells Lena to accept the status quo or get a divorce. At 52, Lena knows well how divorce changes everything as friends, and even children, choose sides. Seeking guidance and support, Lena discovers the wisdom of singer and survivor Tina Turner, using Turner’s story as a road map to finding her own happiness and a way back to her dreams. In her debut novel Luckett delivers a strong, likable heroine who comes through her crisis by recognizing her true worth and empowering herself. 

After the “Chocolate Social,” I reminded my “sister friends” that I was hungry and get me to thy dinner some where.  We went to the Hard Rock Cafe on Peachtree Street.  Met Steve, the waiter, I was just calling him that because I was too hungry to remember his real name, but got served some great food.  That  Grilled Mediterranean Shrimp Pasta was the Bomb!!!! I had that in Houston.  

Got to stick on one for Black History Year.  
On a very, very sad note, Ms. L. A. Banks (Leslie Banks) passed away yesterday.  All of the serious book lovers, sci-fi affectionados and many people around the world, are much better to have known her and her works.  You may not have known her as a friend or relative, but through her books, with her fighting agenda, spirit against evil and a black woman who takes no stuff, but loves like no other, romance stories and a bit of history, then you know L. A. Banks.  Over the next few blogs, she will be our black history and I will help everyone to remember her and encourage everyone to buy all of her books.  You will no way possible be disappointed.
L. A. BANKS – MINION (VAMPIRE HUNTRESS LEGEND) $7.99 - - - 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 it 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. Sick, I know, just sick!), I even liked Eddie Murphy when he played a vampire in “Vampire in Brooklyn” with a bad ass apartment in the middle of the hood.  Yes, it was campy and kooky, and maybe a bit better than Blacula, another 70s black movie with William Marshall and Vonetta McGee, hey I love them.  I get a kick out of vampires.  They are so smoooooth!!!!  This sister in L. A. Banks books can kick some butt and I’m loving it!!

Damali Richards is a rising star of Warriors of Light Records, but her fans would never guess that she is also the most important vampire hunter in a millennium. However, unfortunately for the inexperienced young huntress, the vampires and demons have both discovered her existence. An age-old war escalates to unprecedented heights of violence as the dark forces strive to slay Damali before she comes of age and gains her full powers.
Damali is an appealing heroine, the concept is intriguing, and the series is promising. However, the first novel is rocky. Damali is a vampire-killing martial artist, and Minion presents an epic struggle between good and evil, yet the novel neglects to include a climactic battle between Damali and the bad guys (or much of a climax at all; a sequel is obviously forthcoming). Another problem is that Damali's teacher withholds crucial information from not only the huntress, but also her guardians, who should have learned everything many years ago. In contrast, the characters frequently tell each other things they already know. Readers craving the twisted erotic charge of the Anita Blake novels or the Buffy-Spike relationship may be dissatisfied that sexual tension is less important to Minion; and readers seeking Hamiltonian melodrama may also be disappointed.