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|RECENT AALBC.COM BOOK REVIEWS, ARTICLES,
INTERVIEWS & FILM REVIEWS
The Seduction of
Mr. Bradley by Minnie E Miller
The Seduction of Mr. Bradley is a relationship novel. The twist is that this work of fiction explores the complexity of bisexuality from a man's point of view without pages and pages of illicit sex and lust. The sex scenes in this novel are done tastefully. Miller was more interested in putting a human face on men who are attracted to both women and other men,. The author did not sensationalize the subject; but sought, it seemed, to explain who these men are. These men have been hated, despised and misunderstood while so many men who have been discovered on the �down low� have come out of the closet. Bill Bradley's story is being played out all over this country, in more instances than we know or imagine. Finally someone tells the story in a way that brings truth and reality to the forefront. It's a story told with compassion. �Reviewed by Idrissa Uqdah
Sucka Free Love!
How to Avid Dating The Dumb, The Deceitful, The Dastardly, The
Dysfunctional, and The Deranged by Deborrah Cooper
Are you sick of dating suckas? If so, then have I got a great how-to tome for you. Sucka Free Love is the brainchild of Deborrah Cooper, a San Francisco-based relationship expert who has counseled folks in the Bay Area for 15 years on HeartBeat, her own cable TV talkshow. She also answers an array of Dear Abby-style questions from the lovelorn over the Internet at her website called AskHeartBeat.com. �Book Review by Kam Williams
The My Brother Interview with Kam Williams
Born in the Bronx on March 18, 1963, Vanessa Lynn Williams and her brother, Chris (the actor), were raised in Millwood, a suburb of New York City located in Westchester. Her parents, Milton and Helen, both music teachers, are also each half-white and half-black. And they must have had a premonition, because Vanessa's birth announcement read: �Here she is: Miss America!�
On September 17, 1983, she made history and proved her parents to be clairvoyant when she won the Miss America Pageant, becoming the first black woman to hold the title in the process. Regrettably, Vanessa decided to surrender her crown after some nude photos of her surfaced in Penthouse Magazine.
Film - Review by Kam Williams
The historic aspect of the production aside, there are a couple of other reasons to recommend My Brother. First, seeing a ghetto-based drama revolving around black males not behaving either like amoral gangstas or clownish buffoons is a welcome change of pace. Secondly, although the script runs a little long, it was well crafted and expertly executed by the capable cast, most notably
by Rhonda Byrne
Like no other individual in America, Oprah Winfrey has the power to kickstart the latest craze. Such was the case a few years ago when she praised a dietary supplement called Airborne as a means of warding off colds and flu-like symptoms. Well, sales of the over-the-counter medication took off, and everywhere you turned, there was another person popping the chewable tablets like candy.
Oprah is also capable of catapulting an author to the top of the Best Seller list, and this is precisely the phenomenon we are witnessing today with The Secret, a how-to primer which purports to unlock �The great mystery of the universe.� The book shot to the top of the charts right after being featured on her show a few weeks ago. And it is still sitting in the #1 slot at Amazon.com today.
Page and You Don't Stop: Sharing Successful Chapters in Our Lives with
Youth by Patrick M. Oliver (Editor)
There is an old Jesuit saying which goes, �Give me the child until he is seven, and I will show you the man.� If you believe the words of that wise maxim, then you know that early intervention is the answer to the woeful literacy and high school graduation rates which come to permeate the African-American community.
For some reason, reading isn�t generally considered cool among most black teens, especially males, in inner-city schools, a self-destructive attitude which only lessens their prospects for success later in life. Fortunately, Patrick Oliver has staked his career on reversing this suicidal trend. Oliver, co-founder of the Black Male Development Symposium, has been making significant inroads as the director of the Open Book Program, a city-wide reading project in Chicago.
How to Make Your Child Rich & Famous
Do you have a talented kid who wants to be famous, and are you willing to be a stage-mom or a stage-dad in order to achieve that goal? If so, then have I got a book for you. Billionaire Baby is a straightforward, strategic primer filled with what strikes me as sage advice about how to turn that little monster of yours into a money-generating mega-star.
The book was written by Emory Drake, a model who ostensibly draws from both her own experiences and from the insights of experts and success stories in compiling her lengthy litany of dos and don�ts. Her tone is cold and calculated from beginning to end, which ought to serve as a fair warning to anyone expecting their kid to become an overnight sensation. �Reviewed by Kam Williams
Gates - Film Review by Kam Williams
Hotel Rwanda chronicled the role that a hotel manager played back in
1994 by saving a thousand refugees from the senseless slaughter of a
million of their fellow Tutsis unfolding outside the compound. Then,
Sometime in April covered the same civil war only with a wider angle of
Time - DVD Review by Kam Williams
Rudy Giuliani was catapulted to a secular sainthood for his handling of the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, leading many to forget how, for eight years, he had ruled New York City with an iron-fist, bitterly dividing it along ethnic lines by implementing policies which favored whites and the rich over minorities and the poor. Relying on code words like �Zero Tolerance� and �Quality of Life,� the mayor had given the NYPD the go ahead to intimidate and mistreat not only squeegee guys and the homeless, but anyone who wasn�t white with such impunity and contempt. The result was a Wild West atmosphere in which minority communities were turned into police states where trigger-happy detectives could shoot an innocent, unarmed black man, Amadou Diallo, 41 times, knowing that Rudy had their backs and they�d get off scot-free.
Hard Times, Easy Credit and the Era of Predatory Lenders
How did we become a country where avaricious mega-corporations heartlessly feast on the misfortunes of the least of our brethren, aided and abetted in that endeavor by an anti-consumer Congress? This is the question which Maxed Out seeks to answer via a combination of probing interviews with experts, such as Harvard Law Professor Elizabeth Warren, and eye-opening investigative journalism conducted all across the nation.
In Mississippi, we are introduced to a mentally-retarded African-American on fixed income who lost her home after being duped into signing a loan agreement whose repayment terms she would obviously never be able to meet. �DVD Review by Kam Williams
Rasta DVD Review by Kam Williams
women flock to Jamaica for a little fun in the sun, the R&R they�re
often looking for is not �Rest and Relaxation� but to �Rent a Rasta�
The NAACP Image Awards Interview with Kam Williams
KW: What do you have to say to those people who think the NAACP has outlived its usefulness, especially since it still has the seemingly outdated term �colored� in the name of the organization.
VB: These are two different issues you�re raising. The name and the use of colored people, on one level, may be perceived as dated, and then on another level, it's perceived as progressive. If you talk about just in the context of African American, to be colored may feel dated, but if you talk about the colored people of the world, it's progressive. The NAACP is essentially a civil rights, human rights organization that came about because of the injustices against the African-American community. We maintain the work we do in the African-American community, but we also feel there are lessons to be learned for all colored people around the world and all those who are suffering under any form of oppression, which is why the NAACP also is active internationally. In regards to people feeling that it's a dated organization, all I can say is the NAACP is still very active, it's very vital.
Literary Work - Debut Author at the NAACP Image Award Nominee Dwight
Fryer - A Class Act with a Great Book
"The award for Outstanding Literary Work - Debut Author at the NAACP Image Awards eluded me; however, the week end experience was nothing short of wonderful for my wife and me. Actor Hill Harper won for his delightful book, Letters To A Young Brother. The book has received strong reviews and would be a great gift to any person, not just the youthful males in your life.
My employer, FedEx hosted my wife and I along with a contingent of FedEx customers, employees, and guests at the Image Award Show in Hollywood. FedEx was a premier sponsor of the NAACP Image Awards show and events. The NAACP Image Awards was a great opportunity to advocate two of the several things I am most passionate about: FedEx and telling stories via my literary pursuits. It was a privilege and great blessing to be able to do both simultaneously." (Photo: Dwight Fryer, Linda Gill - General Manager of Kimani Press)
Snake Moan - Film Review by Kam Williams
With Hustle & Flow, Craig Brewer showed the world how hard it was out there for a Southern pimp. Now, the irreverent iconoclast has returned to Memphis Tennessee to craft an equally-empathetic portrait of a nymphomaniac in Black Snake Moan, a tawdry tale of sin and redemption starring Samuel L. Jackson and Christina Ricci.
Jackson plays Lazarus, a weather-beaten, down-on-his-luck bluesman, whose wife, Rose (Adriane Lenox), has just done left him for another man, in this case his own brother, Deke (Leonard L. Thomas). In fact, Laz ended-up so embittered and broken by the double betrayal that he has taken to lying around the house like a lost soul. So, the name from the famous Biblical parable really isn�t needed to inform the audience that this is a character in search of a spiritual resurrection.
Also check out Samuel L. Jackson's Interview: http://aalbc.com/reviews/black_snake_moan_interview.htm
Diary of a Tired
In recent years, numerous revenge-themed Hollywood adventures have seemed to take a certain delight in portraying black men as unreliable womanizers undeserving of any respect, like the sort of losers always airing their dirty linen any day of the week on The Jerry Springer Show. From Waiting to Exhale to Two Can Play That Game to Diary of a Mad Black Woman, these female empowerment flicks have generally left brothers not only brow-beaten but in need of an image overhaul.
Now, help has arrived in Diary of a Tired Black Man, a fascinating half-documentary-half melodrama which marks the directorial debut of Tim Alexander. A little over a year ago, you may remember how Alexander generated a phenomenal air of anticipation about this controversial picture merely by making the trailer available over the internet.
Image Awards by Kam Williams
And despite the best Image Awards show ever, all is apparently not well with the NAACP, either, since its board members were reportedly caught by surprise by the announcement. Now they must start a fresh search for a chief executive to stabilize an organization struggling to stay relevant in the face of suggestions that it might have outlived its usefulness.
Includes a complete list of all the Literature Category Awarding winning authors.
nat creole. is the online magazine dedicated to offering an entertaining yet informed perspective on the literature, politics, art and music of contemporary global culture. With a focus on broadening the conversation on the arts and their role in an increasingly inter-connected world, nat creole. provides an ideal forum for the exchange of ideas, beliefs and forms of cultural expression.
|AUTHORS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Wideman is the only writer to have been awarded the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction twice-- once in 1984 for his novel Sent for You Yesterday and again in 1990 for Philadelphia Fire. In 1998, Wideman won the Rea Award for the short story, an award judged this year by Grace Paley, Tim O'Brien, and Gina Berriault (previous winners include John Cheever and Eudora Wefty). In 1990, he also received the American Book Award for Fiction. He was awarded the Lannan Literary Fellowship for Fiction in 1991 and the MacArthur Award in 1993. Other honors include the St. Botolph Literary Award (1993), the DuSable Museum Prize for Nonfiction for Brothers and Keepers (1985), the Longwood College Medal for Literary Excellence, and the National Magazine Editors' Prize for Short Fiction (1987). In 1996, he edited the annual anthology The Best American Short Stories (Houghton Mifflin).
For many, the literary renaissance in Harlem began with the publication of Cane. It was hailed as a masterpiece, as a fresh voice from a very promising young writer.
"Racially, I seem to have (who knows for sure) seven blood mixtures: French, Dutch, Welsh, Negro, German, Jewish, and Indian. One half of my family is definitely colored.... And, I alone, as far as I know, have striven for a spiritual fusion analogous to the fact of racial intermingling."�Jean Toomer
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Magazine Celebrates Harlem Literature
Join the Harlem World movement, Wednesday, March 28th, 7PM
An exclusive celebration of Harlem literature and the hottest authors who define it. Hosted by Troy Johnson, Harlem World Magazine senior book editor and founder of the AALBC.com and authors Relentless Aaron, Hickson, Norma Jean Darden and Heather Covington. Also meet, HW Wedding Issue 2007, cover model Noella Coursaris (pictured).
Make plans to attend the Second Annual Self-Publishing Symposium at The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, March 25, 2007. We welcome you to come and take advantage of what this important business event can do for your publishing company. Whether you are a self-published author or small/independent press you won�t want to miss this unparalleled chance to:
■ Learn successful business strategies from industry experts.
America - Join us in the AA Pavilion
Co-Founders of The African American Pavilion at BookExpo America, Tony Rose, Publisher/CEO, Amber Communications Group, Inc. and Adrienne Ingrum, CEO, Adrienne Ingrum L.L.C., former founding Associate Publisher of Black Issues Book Review have signed a new agreement with BookExpo America/Reed Expositions to manage the 4th Annual African American Pavilion/BEA and produce the African American Pavilion Welcoming Reception and The African Pavilion Pavilion Awards Reception at BookExpo America, John Jacob Javits Convention Center, May 31- June 3, 2007, New York City.
Tell BEA sales manager Mike Carlucci (203-840-5625
or Tony Rose (email@example.com)
that "AALBC.com Sent You"; and you will be entitled to a 25%
discount on all AALBC.com services (except book reviews) from the
moment you signup until July 1st 2007.
Song: A Tribute to Bob Marley: Lyrical Poet
Saturday March 31, 2007, 2 PM � Donation: $10, reduced rate for seniors
and students with ID.
Kwame Dawes, author of Bob Marley, Lyrical Genius. With critically acclaimed author, Colin Channer as moderator, panelists will discuss the impact of Bob Marley on other musicians and poets, explore the cultural, political, and spiritual elements of Bob Marley's lyrics and examine the influence of Bob Marley's lyrics on the global culture. Q & A will follow panel discussion.
Performances by: Imani Dancers and international reggae artists Taj Weekes & Adowa. And More.
African Literary Forum in Ghana
PALF will bring together on an annual basis established and emerging writers of African descent in both Africa and the Diaspora, for a two-week conference of writing workshops, craft seminars, lectures, and cultural activities.
PALF will be the most important conference of its kind anywhere in the world, bringing together writers from Africa and writers of African descent from the many extensions of the English-speaking Africa Diaspora: U.S.A., Caribbean, Latin America, Canada, Europe and the British Commonwealth. The conference will open in Accra, Ghana, in the summer of 2008.
Special Competition for emerging writers from Africa and the African Diaspora: Winners receive a Free Trip to the Conference and publication in The Literary Review and in a special insert of A Public Space
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