National Black Book Festival


Sunday, March 31, 2013

Black Kindle Rocks - Tamika Newhouse

I cannot believe, just cannot believe that I missed three, not one, but three author sightings. It’s so rare to see African American authors down here in the “old south,” Charleston.  I just wanted to kick myself for missing them.  Airhead!!!  Three days of missed author sightings.
PEARL CLEAGE - The author of “WHAT LOOKS LIKE CRAZY ON A ORDINARY DAY - $9.78,” “JUST WANNA TESTIFY: A NOVEL - $12.99,” “BABYLON SISTERS: A NOVEL - $11.99,” and many, many more books as well as a playwright, lectured at Claflin University in Organgeburg, South Carolina last week, Thursday, and I missed it.  I have seen her numerous times, but this was held at one of the most famous HBC colleges in the US.  I kept telling myself I was going to visit that college to see it’s history, but never got there.  Now, I’m really disappointed I missed the Pearl and the college.  

SONIA SANCHEZ - Writer, Poet, Playwright and Activist - The author of “SHAKE LOOSE MY SKIN: NEW AND SELECTED POEMS - $9.99,” “I’M BLACK WHEN I’M SINGING, I’M BLUE WHEN I AIN’T AND OTHER PLAYS - $9.99” and many other books, was at the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture center in Charleston to celebrate Women’s History Month.  
Then the final straw - TAMIKA NEWHOUSE - A self published bestselling author, who founded and owns Delphine Publications, also visited Charleston last week Saturday for the Sistah Reading Sistah Chocolate Chat.  I really could kick myself.  I met her in Houston two years ago and this sister is one of the biggest producer and promoter of urban books.  She also founded the Baltimore Urban Book Festival, which I hope to go in 2014.  That woman is all over the world spreading her company and the passion to read books.  I admire her since she came from a broken background and pulled herself up and started this publishing company and it’s still going strong, even during this ebook revolution.  
You may not be into Urban/Street Lit and I am not an expert, but I will always give these books a try.  Some of these books say the same old story line over and over again on drugs, ghetto mentality, name calling, etc.  I get a bit tired of it, but I also know that these are the same books I buy in paperback to give to the young adults and to my part time “nuts” at “The Sanctuary” (haven’t talked much about them.  Let’s just say, things remain the same, drama, drama and more drama).  I even give the drug dealers some of these urban/street lit on the corners, just so that I can make some kind of impact on their minds.  Something to get them to think and maybe one day they will get tired and try something new.  I gotta have hope and can’t give up.
How could I have missed three authors in one week.  I tell you how, I worked and worked and worked, got home and was in bed at 8pm to start over again at 4am.  I’m trying to stay on the Dave Ramsey plan, but I tell you, I’m losing steam working two jobs.  I’m losing steam, but I won’t give up as long as GOD is on my side, I just won’t give up.
Here’s a few of Tamika’s books:
THE ULTIMATE NO NO - FREE - - - When Dahlia decides to get even with a man, named Troy, who broke her heart, she thinks of a master plan. To her dismay after asking Nitrah, her best friend to help her get even, she falls in love with Troy. Not only does this cause a huge rift, the ladies must soon face the fact that they both have lied and their secrets will unveil. Troy thinks he has finally found true love with Nitrah but what will happen when he finds out their relationship is based on a lie. This novel includes, love, sex, deceit, and betrayal. Five characters tell the story as they see it. 
THE ULTIMATE QUESTION: WILL LOVE EVER NO ME - $2.99 COOKIE: A FORT WORTH STORY - $2.99 - - - Born Latoya James, when starting high school, Cookie believes this is her time to stand out from underneath her sister’s shadow. Always declared the odd one, she makes it her mission to be noticed by anyone who will pay attention. Reality starts to settle in when she realizes life isn't always peaches and cream. After witnessing the rape of her best friend, and then the death of one of her classmates, she starts to believe life isn’t what she thought it would be. Sex, drugs, catering to her new demons, and hanging out with the older crowd becomes her escape and not even her high school sweetheart can steer her straight. It isn’t until she realizes everyone around her is not who they seem to be when she decides to change her life. But when she experiences an unwanted pregnancy and the death of her mother, Cookie is left to wonder if this is the way her life will always be. Based on a true story, Cookie is a gripping tale of a teen girl who had to grow up sooner than later. Taking place in one of the fastest-growing suburbs of Fort Worth, witness the life of Cookie and her quest to be loved, appreciated, and wanted. You will soon discover life is never what it seems.  I get the impression that this book is based upon Tamika’s life.
KISSES DON’T LIE - $.99 - - - Kyla’s first love, Dean and the one she calls, Mr. Right, Keith, is struggling with her desires and her past when she makes a rare trip back home to Fort Worth. After leaving ten years ago Kyla comes to terms with the one who got away; Dean and their short lived romance comes into full swing. That is until it goes wrong and she is left with wondering if she should work it out with Keith instead. A simple kiss led to many secrets being revealed; and it makes Kyla wish she could take it all back. 
Michael is ready to commit to Brittany and for once he feels he has the right woman by his side. That is until a passionate night turns into an unwanted child. Fighting to keep her heart from being broken; Brittany vows to never be just another notch in a mans belt. Although Michael promises to be there and seals it with a kiss, Brittany still struggles with if she should carry their child. 
When love isn’t enough will each one of them make the right decision? Can they finally trust the one they want the most? After all its better to be slapped by the truth then kissed with a lie. They say kisses don’t lie, right?
Maybe more of a romance than an Urban lit.  You see, not all street lit is filled with drama, sometimes, it’s just a good story.  
Got to get one in for Black History Year
ARNOLD RAMPERSAD - JACKIE ROBINSON: A BIOGRAPHY - $12.99.  The movie “42” comes out on April 12.  It is the story of Jackie Robinson (played by Chadwick Boseman) and his signing with the Brooklyn Dodgers under manager Branch Rickey (played by Harrison Ford).  I am not sure and have not been able to find out if this movie is based upon this book, but I don’t think it matters.  
There are many books on Jackie Robinson and my copy was published in 1997, hardcover and I’m glad I kept it.  It is displayed on the top shelf of my bookcase as a reminder over and over again, that if Jackie Robinson and other African Americans before me have and survived so much injustices than I can imagine, that my lot in life is extremely better because of them and I am grateful, honor, and proud.