Blog of’s Founder & Webmaster Celebrating our Literary Legacy #readingblack


July eNewsletter: Best Sellers, Reviews, a Contest, and Our Online Book Club is Coming Back!

Spalding’s MFA in Writing Apply by August 1, 2018
“Spalding’s MFA in Writing alums don’t just win awards, they make a difference with inclusive, thought-provoking titles. Our affordable, top-tier program emphasizes community over competition. We offer a flexible schedule to fit your busy life. Study across genres, take optional seminars in professional topics, travel abroad, and more. Apply by August 1.”

Bestselling Books May/June 2018

Bestselling Books May/June 2018

Fiction: Loving Me for Me by Naleighna Kai was the bestselling book (eBook) of all this period. Kai is one of AALBC’s Top Selling Authors.

Nonfiction: J. A. Rogers’ book The Five Negro Presidents is a 9-time AALBC Bestseller. Rogers provides evidence that five presidents of the United States including, Jefferson, Jackson, and Lincoln had partial Black ancestry.

Children’s Books: Sales were led by Clayton Byrd Goes Underground by Rita Williams-Garcia. Garcia’s book was nominated for a 2017 National Book Award and was selected by AALBC as a Top 100 Children’s Book.

Buy from AALBC before July 31st and be entered in contest to win the other 14 books in the series! Plus you’ll save 10% get free shipping, and pay no sales tax.

Win Kimberla Lawson Roby’s Reverend Curtis Black Series

Buy from AALBC before July 31st and be entered in contest to win the other 14 books in the series! Plus you’ll save 10% get free shipping, and pay no sales tax.Pre Order Better Late Than Never (the 15th and final book in the Reverend Curtis Black Series) from AALBC before July 31st and you’ll be entered in contest to win the other 14 books in the series! You’ll also save 10%, get free shipping, pay no sales tax, and directly support AALBC!

“Ending my Reverend Curtis Black series is much more of a bittersweet moment than I expected it would be. Partly, because I will miss writing about a family that became a huge part of my life and writing career, and partly because I will truly miss hearing all the wonderful comments from the best readers in the world about Reverend Curtis Black, Charlotte Black and the rest of the characters.” (read the entire letter to AALBC readers)
—Kimberla Lawson Roby (May 24, 2018), #6 All-Time AALBC Bestselling Author

Recently Reviewed Books

Book Club Moderator Tony LindsayThe reviews of the classic titles below were written by Tony Lindsay. Tony is an accomplished author and is now the new moderator of our Black Literature Discussion Forum and online book club!

Our online book club, formerly moderated by Thumper, ran from 1998 to 2006, and in 2010. I’m really excited to have a passionate reader, educator, and advocate for Black literature helping to bring back our online book club after its 8-year hiatus.

Howard Street by Nathan C. HeardHoward Street by Nathan C. Heard

Howard Street reflects the pensive, concise, caring work of an experienced observant writer; the work confronts topics of: police brutality and corruption, segregation, street life, family, white liberalism, homosexuality, the black church, the power of community, addiction, prostitution, the duality of black males, peer pressure, pimping, and the destruction of innocence. There are no innocents that survive Howard Street that is the most disturbing reality of the text. The reader hopes for one surviving lamb but all are devoured. The novel, Howard Street is not a tale of redemption, few are redeemed; it is a hardboiled reality based tale that lays bare the socio-economics of “streeters’” / hustlers’ life. It is a must for any student of literature.

 Two Wings to Veil My Face by Leon ForrestTwo-Wings-to-Veil-My-Face

Magical realism is perhaps the most demanding category of literary fiction; few writers use it successfully. One who has succeeded in being considered a magical realist is Chicago novelist Leon Forrest.

In his work, Two Wings to Veil My Face, Forrest writes the slave history of an African American family. He weaves the story through two protagonists: a grandson Nathaniel Witherspoon and Great-Momma Sweetie Reed, the grandmother. The masterful storytelling begins with the stressful situation of the Witherspoon family viewing the deceased grandfather at a funeral home.

“The Two Foot Shelf of Negro Literature”The Two Foot Shelf of Negro Literature

“The Two Foot Shelf of Negro Literature” was compiled 90 years ago and the books are still relevant! “Composed of books [sic], selected with care and discrimination, with the idea of offsetting the silence of our educational system regarding twelve million American citizens. Add these volumes to your library. Reading them will increase your respect for the Negro race.” —Kathryn M. Johnson

Kathryn Magnolia Johnson, was one of many unsung heroes of a budding civil rights movement. She was a champion for literacy, education and social justice in colored communities throughout the country and the world. Johnson also wrote, The Dark Race in the Dawn: Proof of Black African Civilization in the America’s Before Columbus, which discusses the African presence in America long before Columbus. She was truly a woman ahead of her time. Armand Anthony Gonzalzles, recently published Johnson’s Biography.

Get an Author Profile: Your Personal Website on AALBC

An Author Profile Profile is your permanent web presence on It includes everything a dedicated website would including, your photo, biography, video, and large images of all of your books. Each of your books will have its own page which can include a book trailer, description, excerpt, and buy links to all the major booksellers — including AALBC and even your own site.

AALBC can even serve as your primary web presence. Simply associate your domain name to your page. Check out for an example.

Get an Author Profile: Your Personal Website on AALBC


AALBC Interns Make a Major Contribution to AALBC

Daisy Copelin, Author, Poet, and AALBC InternDaisy Copelin, Author, Poet, and AALBC Intern
Daisy is currently a student at Medgar Evers College where she is majoring in English and professional writing. She published her first inspirational book in 2013 and is releasing her first children’s book this year (2018) entitled No More Bad Secrets geared towards teaching children safe body touch. She is using her gift of teaching and writing combined with her passion for children to inspire and becoming a leading voice in the Educational system.

Last semester Daisy helped expand our growing list of children’s book authors, by researching and writing profiles for Crystal Allen, Chris Barton, Christine Taylor Butler, Cozbi A. Cabrera, Tami Charles, Julian English, Karen English, Christine Kendall, Andrea J. Loney, Ray Anthony Shepard, G. Todd Taylor, Morgan E. Taylor, Pamela M. Tuck, and Audrey Vernick. Look out for great things from this young lady.

Troy Johnson Founder and WebmasterDear Reader,

First, I’d like to apologize for not sending a newsletter in June. It was a very busy period as I continue to dramatically increase the site’s content, improve our infrastructure, participate in events (look for me at the National Book Club Conference), and work to establish strategic alliances — all in an effort to ensure our stories and history has a strong platform for generations to come.

As always, your paid subscription is so important. Please consider purchasing your subscription to the eNewsletter.

Of special note I’d like to acknowledge Dr. Elizabeth Nunez, whose very generous financial support has allowed AALBC to do so much more this year. Thank You.

Peace and Love,

troy signature

Troy Johnson
Founder & Webmaster,

Our newsletter may be read on your Kindle ebook reader or read via RSS. Consider sponsoring our eNewsletter or a dedicated mailing. Logo

★ eNewsletter – Originally Published, July 12, 2018 – Issue #260


Troy D. Johnson is the President, founder and webmaster of, LLC (The African American Literature Book Club). Launched in March of 1998, has grown to become the largest and most frequently visited website dedicated to books and films by and about people of African descent.