AALBC.com's BESTSELLING BOOKS -
JANUARY AND FEBRUARY 2008
- Succulent: Chocolate Flava II by
- Confessions of a Video Vixen by
AUTHORS YOU SHOULD KNOW
The New York Times describes Durham's most recent novel, Acacia: Book One: The War With the Mein: �Durham vividly captures the frenzy of ancient warfare�battle-maddened pachyderms, hails of javelins and arrows, ordered ranks of Roman light infantry crumbling before Hannibal's mercenary army of ''copper-skinned'' Libyans, tattooed and dreadlocked Numidians and blond, blood-drinking Gauls. 'The world is cruel,' Durham's Hannibal proclaims, and it is.�
|Allison Hobbs -
The Queen of Seduction
"Greetings! I would like to take the time out to introduce you to the newest hottest erotica writer on the scene. Don't sleep on Allison Hobbs because you are missing out on some of the most sensual and freaky writing on the market. Many have been searching for the "next Zane." Allison has her own individuality but just like Madonna wore a Brittany Spears t-shirt at her concerts, consider me wearing an Allison Hobbs t-shirt at mine. Her next novel, Dangerously in Love, will be available this fall and it is a scorcher." �New York Times Bestselling Author, Zane
|John H. McWhorter
McWhorter is a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, is the author of Winning the Race: Beyond the Crisis in Black America his first major book on the state of black America since the New York Times bestseller Losing the Race, John McWhorter argues that a renewed commitment to achievement and integration is the only cure for the crisis in the African-American community.
|Stacy Hawkins Adams
Stacy is a nationally acclaimed author, speaker and freelance journalist whose novels help readers laugh, heal and seek to lead more meaningful lives. Watercolored Pearls, her recently released third novel, deals with the issues of self-esteem, grace, transformation and God's abiding love. It continues to garner rave reviews from readers and book critics.
In his most recent book A Bound Man: Why We Are Excited about Obama And Why He Can�t Win Steele writes of how Obama is caught between the two classic postures that blacks have always used to make their way in the white American mainstream: bargaining and challenging. Bargainers strike a "bargain" with white America in which they say, I will not rub America's ugly history of racism in your face if you will not hold my race against me. Challengers do the opposite of bargainers. They charge whites with inherent racism and then demand that they prove themselves innocent by supporting black-friendly policies like affirmative action and diversity.
Ormes - The First African American Woman Cartoonist
In the United States at midcentury�a time of few opportunities for women in general and even fewer for African American women�Jackie Ormes (1911-85) blazed a trail as a popular cartoonist with the major black newspapers of the day. Jackie Ormes chronicles the life of this multiply talented, fascinating woman. Read more about Ormes in the new biography; Jackie Ormes: The First African American Woman Cartoonist by Nancy Goldstein
RECENT AALBC.COM BOOK & FILM REVIEWS, ARTICLES, INTERVIEWS & VIDEOS
Party Crashing: How the
Hip-Hop Generation Declared Political Independence by Keli Goff
What we have here is an ill-timed Republican recruitment tool designed to entice blacks over to the Grand Old Party. I suppose when the publishers greenlighted this book, they probably never considered the possibility that Obama would have so much momentum. For Goff simply sounds silly when she suggests that black youth are eager to abandon the Democratic Party when this is the very constituency most rabidly backing Barack and likely to put him over the top. Reviewed by Kam Williams
|Is NO Not Clear
Enough For You? by Angelia Vernon Menchan
What I expected to be a Young Adult novel turns out to be a good read for women of all ages. Is NO Not Clear Enough For You? by Angelia Vernon Menchan is an amusingly clever story about young people learning real life lessons while struggling to stay in God's grace. Reviewed by Idrissa Uqdah
|Not Even If You
Begged by Francis Ray
Francis Ray has written more than twenty novels in the romance genre and has been one of the top romance authors for most of her career. In her latest release, Not Even If You Begged, readers are treated to an erotic tale of love between two opposites who find themselves attracted despite themselves. Reviewed by Idrissa Uqdah
Pearls by Stacy Hawkins Adams
Hawkins is a gifted storyteller. Each chapter encourages the reader on to the next chapter wondering what these women will learn as they grow in faith and in esteem. This is a good relationship novel for a generation of accomplished African American professionals making their mark on the world. I recommend it highly. Reviewed by Idrissa Uqdah
Brown by Cheryl Robinson
After becoming the first-place winner in a national
reality TV show, Marvin has finally arrived. He is determined to repay
Georgia for the eleven years she has struggled beside him. He moves the
family into their dream house, they drive the best cars, and Georgia
becomes a stay-at-home mother and wife. For the first time, money is
plentiful. Georgia feels that all their dreams have finally become
Born in Atlanta, Georgia on December 10, 1985, Raven-Symone' Christina Pearman moved with her family to New York City while still a toddler. By the age of two she had already been signed by the Ford Modeling Agency, and she soon started doing TV ads for everything from Cool Whip to Fisher Price toys to Ritz crackers to Jello. Here, Raven talks about her new movie, College Road Trip, a family comedy where, opposite Martin Lawrence, she plays the teenage daughter of an overprotective police chief. Interviewed by Kam Williams
T.D. Jakes: Reposition
Yourself - Living Life Without Limits (DVD)
...Jakes does most of the talking, first delivering the urgent message that time is your greatest resource and that one must, therefore, be wise in deciding exactly how you will spend it. Next, he delineates the five steps involved in any process: revelation, inspiration, formalization, institutionalization and crystallization. Ultimately, he concludes with a rousing sermon passionate enough even to get the lame up out of their seats during which he exhorts you to �Live your life!� because �This is your moment!� DVD Reviewed by Kam Williams
Shelby Steele: The Why
Obama Can�t Win Interview
Shelby Steele is a controversial public intellectual who often finds himself at the center of controversy because of his conservative stances on such issues as Affirmative Action, reparations, welfare and other government entitlement programs. As an African-American, this makes him a much in demand media darling who Republicans wheel out whenever they need a black man to weigh-in on a hot-button issue. Here, Shelby talks about his provocative new book A Bound Man: Why We Are Excited about Obama and Why He Can�t Win. Interviewed by Kam Williams
The Lazarus Parable: A
Revelation for the 21st century by John C. Bonner
The Lazarus Parable by John C. Bonner is an apocalyptic tale which chronicles what the future holds for the planet Earth in the 21st century. It is an ambitious undertaking representative of the biblical sci-fi genre popularized by of the �Left Behind� series, and calling it a cross between �Star Trek� and �The DaVinci Code�, would come close to describing it. Reviewed by Cynique
by S.R. Sarai
In this fantasy novel about the tenuous relationship man has with faith and spirituality, readers follow a young immortal named Lae on his quest to obliterate Kaar, the source of all evil. Fantasy-lovers will easily be drawn in as Choosing Deceit is reminiscent of beloved epics such as Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. Readers fascinated by tales laced with the history and rhetoric of Islam and Christianity will appreciate the many religious references included in this novel. Reviewed by Jill Robinson
State of the Black Union
2008 - Obama's Conspicuous Absence Overshadows Annual Gathering
Senator Barack Obama opted to remain on the campaign trail in Ohio rather than accept an invite to address the convention of African-American intellectuals who had gathered to participate in the 9th Annual State of the Black Union. Curiously, despite the fact that Senator Hillary Clinton did attend, Obama had enough advocates on hand to counterbalance any potential blowback generated by his conspicuous absence.
|Wrong on Race:
The Democratic Party's Buried Past by Bruce Bartlett
Although the Democratic Party has come to be associated with liberal politics and thus embraced by African-Americans over the past 40 years or so, this hasn�t always been the case. In fact, for most of its history, the party created by Thomas Jefferson has been uniformly racist and right-wing. Reviewed by Kam Williams
Tasha Smith - The Why
Did I Get Married Interview
Tasha Smith is a larger than life actress who brings an endearing combination of chemistry, raw intensity, vulnerability and sheer sensuality to every character she portrays on the big screen. In other words, she's a consummate thespian who is just loved by the camera. And her memorable performances in two Tyler Perry pictures last year, �Why Did I Get Married� and �Daddy's Little Girls,� led this critic to name her the best African-American actress of 2007 in my annual film Blacktrospective. Interviewed by Kam Williams
2007 Annual Look Back at the Best (and Worst) in Black Cinema by Kam
I�m sure many readers might want an explanation for the relatively-poor showings of Denzel's box-office hits American Gangster and The Great Debaters. Well, the former was not much more than a big budget variation on the gangsploitation genre in this critic's estimation. Meanwhile, the latter did feature several inspired performances, but was simply too riddled with comical anachronisms and historical inaccuracies to take seriously.
|Get Real, Get
Rich: Conquer the 7 Lies Blocking You from Success by Dr. Farrah Gray
Written by �Reallionaire� Dr. Farrah Gray, this relatively-feasible
how-to guide is designed to empower individuals to maximize their
potential, whatever that may be. However, in Dr. Gray's opinion, this
involves much more than chanting positive affirmations. So expect to do
some serious work along the path to fulfilling your goals.
Dirty Laundry - Brother
on the Down-Low Outed by His Kid in DVD Comedy
Even though homophobia is undoubtedly an issue in the �hood, the motley ensemble's supportive response to Sheldon's revealing his sexual preference proves to be a surprisingly sweet way to bring down the curtain on this well-meaning message movie. DVD Reviewed by Kam Williams
Nicole Ari Parker: The
Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins Interview
Here, she talks about her latest movie, Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, an ensemble comedy about a Hollywood talk-show host who finds himself cut down to size when he returns to his Georgia roots for his parents� 50th anniversary. Directed by Malcolm Lee, the film features Martin Lawrence in the title role. Interviewed by Kam Williams
African American Lives 2
- Black Luminaries Find Roots in 4-Part PBS Series
A year ago, Harvard Professor Henry Louis �Skip� Gates hosted a groundbreaking series on which he and eight other African-American icons explored their roots via a combination of genealogical and DNA research. The show was so successful, that PBS has brought Skip back along with eleven new recruits curious about their roots. Review by Kam Williams
NEW FROM CROWN PUBLISHING GROUP
|Major by Todd
At the turn of the 20th century, hundreds of handsome, lightning-fast
racers won the hearts and minds of a bicycling-crazed public. Scientists
studied them, newspapers glorified them, and millions of dollars in
purse money was awarded to them. Major Taylor aimed to be the fastest of
them all. A prominent black man at a time when such a thing was deemed
scandalous, his mounting victories, high moral virtue, and bulletlike
riding style made him a target for ridicule from the press and sabotage
by the white riders who shared the track with him.
|Standing Tall by
C. Vivian Stringer and Laura Tucker
�Work hard, and don�t look for excuses,� Stringer's parents told her, �and you can achieve anything.� But her faith and perseverance would be tested many times. A gifted athlete, she had to fight for a place on an all-white cheerleading squad in the sixties. In 1981, just as her coaching career was taking off, her fourteen-month-old daughter, Nina, was stricken with spinal meningitis. Nina would never walk or talk again. Still grieving, Stringer brought a small, poor, historically black college to the national championships�a triumph hailed as �Hoosiers with an all-female cast.� In 1991, her husband, Bill�her staunchest supporter, the father of her children, and the love of her life�fell dead of a sudden heart attack, but that same year, she led yet another young team to the Final Four. Through these dark times and others�including her bout with cancer, shared here for the first time�Stringer has carried her burdens with grace. Given her history, it was no surprise that she led her team to respond to Don Imus's slurs with dignity and courage.
|The Echo from
Dealey Plaza by Abraham Bolden
From the first African American assigned to the presidential Secret
Service detail comes a gripping and unforgettable true story of bravery
and patriotism in the face of bitter hatred and unthinkable corruption.
Abraham Bolden was a young African American Secret Service agent in
Chicago when he was asked by John F. Kennedy himself to join the White
House Secret Service detail. For Bolden, it was a dream come true�and an
encouraging sign of the charismatic president's vision for a new
The Page on WBAI New York 99.5 FM
Hosted by Esther Amah, Off The Page on WBAI New York 99.5 FM is the one hour lively weekly radio talk show about the world of books with those who write, critique, profit and publish, publicize and organize, agitate, inspire and pioneer. Provocative, personal, dynamic, vibrant, Off The Page brings books to life. Off The Page is unique in we do a creative media franchise. Off The Page goes from the print, to the airwaves to the webscreen. You can hear Off The Page on the radio, you can watch segments of the show online, and you can get the books you hear us talking about. Welcome to 21st Century creative literary media! The audience is global. Due to the creative media franchise, Off The Page reaches audiences in the US, UK, Norway, France, South Africa, British Virgin Islands, Ghana.
The Literary Freedom Project is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt not-for-profit arts organization. LFP supports writers of African and Latino descent through education initiatives and print
Harlem: A Biography of James Baldwin by Herb Boyd
"Herb Boyd's study of Baldwin and Harlem features vivid literary portraits of a powerful writer in sometimes controversial dialogue with other major figures of his era. It also centers Baldwin's Harlem in a memorable, necessary way. Boyd's book is fascinating and authoritative on a subject that he knows well and writes about with insight and sympathy." � Arnold Rampersad, author of Ralph Ellison: A Biography
Daughters of Men:
Portraits of African-American Women and Their Fathers by Rachel Vassel
From Actress Sanaa Lathan to Georgia State Supreme Court Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears, many African-American women attribute much of their success to a positive father figure.
In Daughters of Men, author Rachel Vassel has complied dozens of stunning photographs (by celebrity photographer Derek Blanks) and compelling personal essays about African- American women and their fathers. Whether it's a father who encouraged his daughter's artistic eye by taking her to cultural events or one who unwaveringly supported a risky career move, the fathers in Daughters of Men each had their own unique yet successful style of parenting.
Daughters of Men is the first title to showcase the importance of the Black father's impact on the accomplishments of his daughter. With a heartfelt foreword by best-selling author, professor and radio host Michael Eric Dyson, this book provides an intimate look at black fatherhood.
Recent Interviews with
AALBC.com Founder Troy Johnson
HOT BOOKS in '08!!
- Interview with by DuEwa Frazier on Blogtalkradio
Also check out DuEwa's Interviews with Dr. Haki Madhubuti - Founder of Third World Press, Playwright Richard Fewell and others.
Blogging In Black - Interview with Emanuel Carpenter
Blogging in Black is a collective of mostly black literary professionals sharing their views on the writing life, publishing, and anything else related to books, writing and the biz on our minds.
Part of the 32 Days of Black History Project - with Deesha at
"Mamalicious!" and Yvette at "About Six Impossible Things Before
I have mixed feelings about Troy. Sure his CV is impressive (see bio below), he is a True Friend to black writers, and through his site's discussion board (Thumper's Corner), Yvette and I met each other AND the irrepressible Cynique. But in 2004/2005, I lost way too many hours being entertained and informed by the brainy, zany Thumper's Corner regulars. So to the extent that I have not completed my Great American Novel, I blame Troy. But all is forgiven as Troy shares with us his thoughts on black literature, past and present, and a glimpse at what's currently on his nightstand.
|Marvelous World (Book One The Marvelous Effect)
by Troy Cle
2008 Essence Award Winning Book - Children's Books
Targeted to readers ages 10 and up. Louis Proof is an ordinary kid. He loves listening to hip-hop, racing radio-controlled cars, and hanging out with his best friend, Brandon. Then a mysterious letter invites him to visit the local junkyard. There he finds a secret, underground amusement park like no other in existence. This is the best day of Louis's life. The park even has the most amazing race course for radio-controlled cars. Louis starts racing right away. It's a close contest; he's about to activate his nitro boost to take the lead, when... This is the worst day of Louis's life. Without warning or reason, thirteen-year-old Louis Proof falls into a coma due to a virus of a mysterious, celestial origin. When he awakens three months later, the world that he once knew and loved is totally out of control. He will learn that his illness is connected to everything that is wrong, and that it's not only his responsibility but his destiny to set things right.
in This Town: A Novel
Daughter by Margaret Cezair-Thompson
2008 Essence Award Winning Book - Fiction
In 1946, a storm-wrecked boat carrying Hollywood's
most famous swashbuckler shored up on the coast of Jamaica, and the
glamorous world of 1940's Hollywood converged with that of a small West
Indian society. After a long and storied career on the silver screen,
Errol Flynn spent much of the last years of his life on a small island
off of Jamaica, throwing parties and sleeping with increasingly younger
teenaged girls. Based on those years, The Pirate's Daughter is the story
of Ida, a local girl who has an affair with Flynn that produces a
daughter, May, who meets her father but once.
student is a graduate.
A Boost can make the difference between dropping out or graduating.
Dropping out is a process. It is not just a decision that happens overnight. Students who are at risk of dropping out show signs of pulling back from school long before they actually drop out�they miss classes, skip school, do not complete homework, get low grades, and engage in disruptive behavior. In addition, students who are at risk for dropping out often seem less interested in school and have low expectations for their own success.
|Self Publishing Symposium
- THIS SUNDAY -
March 9, 2008, Harlem, NY
Make plans to attend the third annual Self-Publishing Symposium at the
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, March 9, 2008. We
welcome you to come and take advantage of what this important business
event can do for your publishing company.
Ninth National Black Writers Conference - Friday, March 28, 2008 -
Sunday, March 30, 2008, Brooklym, NY
The Ninth National Black Writers Conference: Black Writers: Reading and Writing to Transform Their Lives and the World will offer panel discussions, readings, workshops and conversations to focus on the ways in which black writers use literature to transform their lives and the larger global community. Inspired in 1986 by the late John Oliver Killens, the National Black Writers Conference was convened to bring together writers, critics, book-sellers, book reviewers, and the general public to discuss issues affecting black writers. Since 1986 the National Black Writers Conferences at Medgar Evers College have attracted a wide range of writers and scholars from the African Diaspora.
Shades of the
Diaspora: Voices of Black Women Writers -
March 29, 2008,
1:00 PM, Baltimore, MD
Enoch Pratt Free Library, 400 Cathedral St., Baltimore, MD 21201 - Call for more information 410-396-5494
Shades of the Diaspora: Voices of Black Women Writers will present, to a book-loving audience, a selection of Black women writers as they discuss and examine culture, the writing process and the writer's personal journey through the publishing landscape. We will span the literary Diaspora and delve into the many facets of what constitutes and establishes culture created via the written word: Lalita Tademy � author of Red River, Lori Tharp � author of Kinky Gazpacho: Life, Love & Spain, Lorna Goodison � author of From Harvey River: A Memoir of My Mother and Her Island, Esther Armah � author of Can I Be Me? (moderator)
Also: Save the Dates! 7-9 November, 2008, Jolly Beach Resort, Antigua, West Indies: http://www.antiguaandbarbudaliteraryfestival.com/index.php
Black Book Festival,
May 17-19, 2008 Houston, TX,
George R. Brown Convention Center
The National Black
Book Festival (NBBF) is an annual event, sponsored jointly by
Cushcity.com, the world's largest African-American retailer online, and
the Houston Black Expo, the largest African-American tradeshow in the
state of Texas. The event is held in conjunction with the Houston Black
Expo and attracts a wide array of authors, publishers, book clubs,
libraries and individual readers from the Southwest U.S. and nationwide.
NBBF 2008 will be held at the George R. Brown Convention Center in
downtown Houston, Texas.
|Official Harlem Book Fair Web Site
The programs of the 10th Anniversary Gala and Celebration of the Harlem Book Fair will begin on Thursday, July 17th at Abyssinian Baptist Church and conclude on Sunday, July 20th at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. The outdoor festival will be held on Saturday, July 19, from 11 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on West 135th Street between 5th and 7th Avenues.
INTERESTING DISCUSSION BOARD
BOOK INDUSTRY NEWS
Martin has been hired as the new senior editor, Kimani Romance, and
will bring ten years of excellence and editorial innovation to the only
African-American series imprint in the marketplace today. She has
previously worked with many award-winning, Essence, Washington Post and
Los Angeles Times bestselling authors such as Nikki Giovanni, bell
hooks, and Darren Coleman along with other reader favorites such as
Erica Simone Turnipseed and co-authors Denene Millner, Angela
Burt-Murray and Mitzi Miller.
Kimani Romance offers sexy, dramatic, sophisticated and entertaining love stories featuring realistic African-American characters that work through compelling emotional conflicts on their way to committed and satisfying relationships. Told primarily from the heroine's point of view, Martin will be publishing stellar authors such as Brenda Jackson and Donna Hill, along with new voices on the
or False: Book Publishers Can Avoid the Agony of Deceit
To: The publishing industry. From: Your friends in the news biz. Re: Fake memoirs. Two words: Fact check! Once again, a publisher has been shocked to learn that the author of a memoir has made stuff up. We're not talking extended lines of dialogue magically remembered from decades earlier -- that...The Washington Post Wed, 05 Mar 2008
lady advocates literacy (AP)
AP - In brief remarks Wednesday to publishing executives, first lady Laura Bush called books her "greatest love affair" and warned that a "nation that does not read for itself cannot think for itself." yahoo.com Wed, 05 Mar 2008 18:13:49 GMT
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