AALBC.com eNewsletter - November 30th, 2003
|Celebrating Our Literary Legacy!|
RECENT AALBC.COM BOOK REVIEWS AND ARTICLES
If you looking for a good book or one to avoid, check out AALBC.com's book reviews
Coffee Elsewhere by Z.Z. Packer - Reviewed by Linda Watkins
one of the brightest new writers on the scene, Drinking Coffee Elsewhere is
a wonderful debut collection. Packer makes a great entrance into the
literary world with these delightful short stories. Drinking Coffee
Elsewhere is spunky, timely and a great change of pace. Her potential to
offer more great writing is highly evident. I look forward to reading her
next work, a novel, perhaps, where she will not be so restricted by space.
Ostinato Vamps by Wanda Coleman - Reviewed by Rondall Brasher
For those who are not familiar with Wanda Coleman, she is the award-winning
author of Bathwater Wine and Mercurochrome. She also gained considerable
fame for what some considered the defamation of
Maya Angelou. In 2002 she wrote an inflammatory review of the book A Song
Flung Up to Heaven by Angelou, which she did not mince words saying that Angelou
was hustling the public by offering such an uninspired work. This obviously
caused quite the uproar. I mention this because Coleman has the same propensity
for subjective truth in Ostinato Vamps.
by Toni Morrison - Reviewed by Thumper
I had a
much easier time reading Love than Morrison's other novels. With my thinking
cap firmly in place and my reading experiences of Beloved, Jazz and Paradise
uppermost in my mind, I began reading Love slowly. I examined every sentence
for the slightest nuance, and contemplated every phrase for hidden meanings,
determined to committing it all to memory because I just knew that I would
have to recall these details to any command of the story. But, I did not
have to go through these mental gymnastics with Love. Morrison did not send
me through pages of prose acrobatics for which she is famous. It was as if
Morrison no longer feels the need to dazzle, intimidate or puzzle me. In my
mind I made Love a lot more complicated than it needed to be. Mind you, I
still paid close attention, but I read the novel in a relaxed frame of mind,
pleasantly surprised that I was able to fully enjoy Love.
Don't Come Easy! by J. T. Smith - Reviewed by Tiffany Davis
Love Don�t Come
Easy is like a male version of Sex in the City without the shopping sprees,
as the story also portrays Tucker's parallel attempts to not find a lasting
relationship. The plot moves along effortlessly and is broken up with timely
comic relief. Readers will particularly enjoy J.C.'S dating experiences with
Keisha, especially a scene involving beer bottles. Smith's writing is
Van Whitfield (author of Beeperless Remote, There's Something Wrong with
Your Scale, and Guys and Suits) and
Marcus Major (Good Peoples, 4 Guys and Trouble, A Man Most Worthy), and
fans of these popular writers will surely enjoy Smith's work.
Editor-in-Chief of Essence Magazine Opens
Akwaaba D.C. Inn
for Black Writers
Hundreds of book lovers (in
addition to a host of best-selling authors, literary activists, and media
personnel) joined Monique Greenwood, author and former editor-in-chief of
Essence magazine, along with her husband, Glenn Pogue, Saturday October 11,
2003, for the grand opening of Akwaaba D.C. Inn.
Read the whole article at
- The challenge of Slam by Regie Gibson
Through years of being involved in Slam I have observed some things, which are disconcerting. However, what has been the most disturbing is how easily so many of us fall into categories, and how these categories tend to run along cultural lines. So much so they�ve become as predictable and clich� as a triple X porn flick. Here are some examples:
AUTHORS YOU SHOULD KNOW
Ms. Ray's titles
consistently make bestseller's lists such as Blackboard and Essence
Magazine. Incognito, her sixth title, was the first made-for-TV
movie for BET. She has written fourteen single titles and eight
anthologies. Seven books will be released in 2004. Awards include
Romantic Times Career Achievement, EMMA, The Golden Pen, and The
Poet, songwriter, author, workshop facilitator,
and educator Regie Gibson has performed, taught, and lectured at
schools, universities, theaters and various other venues on two
continents and in seven countries. Most recently in Havana, Cuba. Regie
and his work appear in the New Line Cinema film
Love Jones, based
largely on events in his life. The poem entitled "Brother to the Night
(A Blues for Nina)" appears on the movie soundtrack and is performed by
the film's star, Larenz Tate. Regie's first full-length book of poetry
is Storms Beneath The Skin
Author of Counting Raindrops through a Stained Glass Window, the story of Vanella Morris who has risen to the highest height of happiness in Cleveland, Ohio. In addition to the success of her career and a wealth of friends is a great relationship with the love of her life, Alton Goode. However, as the saying goes, with every rise there is bound to be a fall, and she believes that the fall in her relationship will be her own fear of commitment. Vanella believes that the surest way to ruin a good relationship is to get married. So when her man proposes, she is heartbroken when she cannot convince a pro-marriage Alton to skip the wedding and just live together...
TWO BOOKS FROM ST MARTIN'S PRESS
Watching contemporary American dance is a unique and electrifying experience. Swept along with the dancers, one wonders how the unorthodox movement and unexpected tempo came about. To provide at least one answer to this question, Brenda Dixon Gottschild charts a "geography" that maps a unique, yet startlingly ubiquitous, region of influence in the history of American dance: the black dancing body. The author invites the reader on a journey of sorts and says, "The black dancing body (a fiction based on reality, a fact based upon illusion) has infiltrated and informed the shapes and changes of the American dancing body." Using interviews with black, white, and brown dance practitioners as well as performance analysis and personal recollections of her own life in the world of dance, Brenda Dixon Gottschild charts the endeavors, ordeals, and triumphs of "black" dance and dancers by exposing perceptions, images, and assumptions, past and present. In her journey to discover the contours and importance of the black dancing body, the author has spoken to some of the greatest dancers and choreographers of our time - Fernando Bujones, Trisha Brown, Garth Fagan, Bill T. Jones, Ralph Lemon, Meredith Monk, Merian Soto, Doug Elkins, Jawole Willa Jo Zollar and a cadre of their esteemed colleagues. The "embattled territories" of the black dancing body are probed chapter by chapter: feet, buttocks, hair, skin color. The whole of the black dancing body is "re-membered" in the final chapters on soul and spirit. The Black Dancing Body is a key to the ineffable rhythms and movement of dance in America.
When a corporate diva Janeen Hampton-Gilliam meets the kind of dream man that'll
make most women want to trade theirs in, her struggling marriage with a
philandering husband gets even harder to maintain. Throw in trouble at work and
a novel that tells the deepest secrets of her youth, and Janeen has more on her
plate than she can handle.
Her younger sister, Sissy, is having the time of her life working dirty real estate deals and enjoying her friendship with the young women who are paid mistresses to Dallas's powerful men. But when the only man she's ever loved suddenly reappears, he causes more drama than she could imagine.
And then there's Joyce-the eldest of the three, who spends most of her time praying for the sins of the other two, while at the same time dealing with hidden secrets of her own. When she sees a woman who looks suspiciously like Sissy in a compromising position with Janeen's wayward husband, she has to decide which sister deserves her allegiance.
The combination of new and old secrets is explosive, and it sets off a whole powder keg of emotions. With so many scandalous issues hanging in the balance, Janeen, Sissy and Joyce are left wondering, What's A Woman To Do?
Authors Supporting Authors Positively (ASAP). Their members are authors, literary supporters, and those interested in working together to promote and market their books. Read their Press Release or to find out more, go to their About Us page.
The Reading and Writing SISTAZ Online Book Club aka RAWSISTAZ! RAWSISTAZ was founded in September 2000 and focuses on reading, writing, and discussing books primarily by African American Authors. Our groups (both online and off) are not only book clubs, but a resource to readers, writers, and literary enthusiasts; thus our motto of "Keeping You in the Know Regarding the African American Literary Community."
BOOKS PLANED FOR PUBLICATION DECEMBER 2003
Visit our books section for links which allow you to search for new releases, by month of publication, of books by or about African-Americans. Including;
Black men are cool. But most books about black men miss the mark, making the same points-difficult childhood, white racism, poverty-they describe without meaningful explanation. bell hooks' brilliant new book We Real Cool: Black Men and Masculinity goes where everyone else has been unwilling to go. Without casting blame, hooks tells hard truths: black men are feared, admired, made the objects of sexual fantasy, envied, but rarely loved. Black men are hated, and hooks tells us why. In these critical essays, hooks examines what black males fear most (maternal sadism, loss, emasculation) and probes the depths of their longing for intimacy, for fathers, for meaningful relationships. Highlighting the value of a feminist approach to understanding black masculinity, hooks looks at the way patriarchal thought and action undermine black male self-esteem. With compassion and generosity, bell hooks contends that black men become loving individuals only as they accept full accountability for shaping their destiny. Taking as her starting point powerful writing on black masculinity from the sixties and seventies, bell hooks looks seriously at the problems black males face - both the ones not of their own making and the ones they create for themselves. In ten clear and provocative chapters, hooks offers a thorough examination of issues ranging from the trauma of childhood abandonment, parenting and black male violence, to work, education, sexuality, self-esteem, and spiritual recovery. We Real Cool offers a redemptive vision of black men and masculinity, one that is complex and multi-layered. This is the book that everyone seeking to understand black male identity must read.
If you prefer to search for books by author. Visit our
"complete" author list for a list of books by over 800 authors.
THE COFFEE WILL MAKE YOU BLACK ON-LINE READING
December 2003 Selection
The Coffee Will Make You Black reading group is currently reading West of Rehoboth by Alexs D. Pate
Our chat session is scheduled for Sunday, Dec 14th, 2003 at 6:00 PM, Eastern Standard Time . If you have already read West of Rehoboth, and would like to participate in our on-line chat session; please join us in our chat room http://www.thumperscorner.com/chat/
http://thumperscorner.com/Reading_List.htm to view the rest of
The Coffee Will Make You Black on-line reading
group's reading list for 2003
AALBC.com DISCUSSION BOARDS
For live discussions visit AALBC.com's discussion boards. You'll find Thumper's Corner where you may exchange views with authors, avid readers on anything related to African-American literature and publishing. There is the an increasingly popular discussion board on Culture, Race and Economy where you'll find controversial, informative and often humorous, exchanges on the subject. The Poetree discussion board allows visitors to share and solicit feedback on poems and exchange information related to poetry.
There are still two unanswered questions.
Interested in having AALBC.com promote your book or
business? Would you like to advertise in this eNewsletter?
AALBC.com mailing list is not made available to outside parties. All recipients of this newsletter must subscribe to receive it directly from AALBC.com. To learn more about AALBC.com visit: http://www.aalbc.com/aboutus.htm