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AALBC.com's Best Selling Books for July and August 2006
The Zane Effect: Zane's titles accounts for 30% of the top 10 fiction titles sold
Fiction to Non fiction ratio: Fiction 69%, Nonfiction 31%
Top Selling Book: Crystelle Mourning by Eisa Nefertari Ulen
Highly Touted New Comer: Crystelle Mourning by Eisa Nefertari Ulen
Eisa Nefertari Ulen
This profound and intense debut novel is the story of a young African American
woman from West Philadelphia who finds her path to a bright future in gentrified
Brooklyn, New York, blocked when she can't let go of the love she lost.
Crystelle has a well-employed fianc� and a life in New York City that most young
professionals would envy. She has come a long way from skipping rope on the
cracked sidewalks of the rough Philadelphia neighborhood where she was raised by
a loving mother and grandfather. She experienced good times and bad in equal
measure in a community where people worked, played, and sometimes fought hard
too. She didn't leave the past behind her though. A ghost from those West Philly
days haunts her, a spirit whose presence in her dreams is as welcome as it is
unsettling. That spirit is Jimmie, her high school sweetheart -- the one who she
watched get gunned down one hot, unforgettable night all those years ago.
Unnerved by her dreams of Jimmie and the suspicion that she may be pregnant,
Crystelle takes a train back to her old neighborhood to reconnect with friends
and family. There, with the help of Jimmie's mother -- a woman who Crystelle
loves like family and who makes a prison visit to the young man who murdered her
son -- Crystelle comes to grips with the memory that haunts her and learns the
power of forgiveness and the need to move on.
With its deeply resonant depictions of urban African American life and the
cultural forces that challenge and sustain their communities, Crystelle Mourning
is a triumphant, lyrical beginning to a bright new talent in fiction.
This profound and intense debut novel is the story of a young African American woman from West Philadelphia who finds her path to a bright future in gentrified Brooklyn, New York, blocked when she can't let go of the love she lost.
Crystelle has a well-employed fianc� and a life in New York City that most young professionals would envy. She has come a long way from skipping rope on the cracked sidewalks of the rough Philadelphia neighborhood where she was raised by a loving mother and grandfather. She experienced good times and bad in equal measure in a community where people worked, played, and sometimes fought hard too. She didn't leave the past behind her though. A ghost from those West Philly days haunts her, a spirit whose presence in her dreams is as welcome as it is unsettling. That spirit is Jimmie, her high school sweetheart -- the one who she watched get gunned down one hot, unforgettable night all those years ago.
Unnerved by her dreams of Jimmie and the suspicion that she may be pregnant, Crystelle takes a train back to her old neighborhood to reconnect with friends and family. There, with the help of Jimmie's mother -- a woman who Crystelle loves like family and who makes a prison visit to the young man who murdered her son -- Crystelle comes to grips with the memory that haunts her and learns the power of forgiveness and the need to move on.
With its deeply resonant depictions of urban African American life and the cultural forces that challenge and sustain their communities, Crystelle Mourning is a triumphant, lyrical beginning to a bright new talent in fiction.
Speak Your Names:
For centuries, African American women have been remaking the world, giving testament to the power of hope, courage, and resilience. But it took the inspired generosity of Oprah Winfrey to honor fully the many gifts of sisterhood. For three amazing days�from May 13 to 15, 2005�a distinguished group of women was invited to celebrate the enduring achievements of twenty-five of their mentors and role models�and in the process pay tribute to the long, glorious tradition of African American accomplishment.
The brilliant centerpiece of the weekend was the reading aloud of Pearl Cleage’s poem �We Speak Your Names,� written especially for the occasion and appearing here for the first time in this beautiful keepsake book. As deeply moving in print as it was during that weekend of love and praise, the poem names each of the women honored: Dr. Maya Angelou, Coretta Scott King, Diahann Carroll, Toni Morrison, Nikki Giovanni, Rosa Parks, Katherine Dunham, and other legends of the brightest magnitude. With heartfelt eloquence, Pearl Cleage (herself a luminary of the younger generation) celebrates her distinguished elders� strength, their magic, their sensuality, their loving kindness, their faith in themselves, and the priceless example of their lives. In her introduction, the poet shares: ’my sisters, here, there, and everywhere, this poem is for you. Use it, adapt it, pass it on. . . .�
Destined to become a classic, We Speak Your Names is a treasure to keep forever and a precious, inspiring gift for the ones you love.
Buck Wild: Sex Chronicles 2, Vol. 2
Zane is back with Gettin' Buck Wild: Sex Chronicles II, more stories for the legion of readers that made The Sex Chronicles a bestseller.
Zane's erotic short stories have captivated the minds of both sexes and all races. The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth did exactly what its title implies -- exploded the myth that men are more sexual in nature than women, and that African-American women in particular are inhibited compared to their female counterparts of other cultures.
to a Young Brother: Manifest Your Destiny
Most people associate Hill Harper with Hollywood, as he's appeared in dozens of films and television shows. But he is just as comfortable in a school auditorium, rousing groups of students with his unique style of real-life wisdom. Having addressed thousands of high-school and middle-school students over the years, Hill is ready to take his message to an even wider audience. Letters to a Young Brother is drawn from the humbling life lessons he learned on the road to his Ivy League education and beyond. Inspired by the countless letters and e-mails he has received from teens, Hill Harper set out to write a series of letters to young people that would catch the attention of even the most reluctant readers.
The result is a motivational but approachable book full of encouragement on a wide array of hot topics, particularly among young African-American and Hispanic men. From the challenges of getting a good education and making it through college to the media's destructive emphasis on material wealth, Letters to a Young Brother delivers eye-opening answers. Reminiscent of Marian Wright Edelman's New York Times bestseller, The Measure of Our Success: A Letter to My Children and Yours, Hill Harper's words will resonate for years to come.
In the latest romantic romp from New York Times best-selling author Zane, two hapless lovers get lost in a dating game gone awry.
When Washington, D.C., chiropractor Yardley Brown goes to his local bank, it isn't only to make deposits into his account. He has long since accrued some interest in Rayne Waters, a bank employee who's too beautiful to be true -- and too beautiful to be single. At least that's what Yardley believes, which is why he has never approached her.
Little does he know that Rayne is anything but taken. Not for want of trying, of course. But after barely surviving a dating disaster with her hairdresser's brother and then falling for a member of her church band who, it turns out, is celibate, she's on the verge of giving up. That is, until Yardley -- discouraged by his own slew of dead-end romances -- finally works up the courage to give her a try.
The true craziness, however, is just beginning, thanks to a cast of characters who seem bent on botching the young couple's relationship.
There's Rayne's erratic mother, who constantly boasts about being a "good whore"; Yardley's playboy buddies, always trolling for sex; and, worst of all, past lovers who make a habit of popping up and ruining things as only old flames (or previous mistakes) can. Weaving the carnal and the comical in true Zane fashion, Rayne and Yardley's struggle to find love in a world gone mad is a timeless talk about everything that can go wrong in the dating game -- and a few things that can go right
Black History: How Reimagining the African-American Past Can Remake
America’s Racial Future
Living Black History reveals the transformative power of the past, and also explores the current fragility of our shared history. From the near disappearance of assassinated NAACP leader, Medgar Evers, from America's history books to the commercialization of the legacy of Malcolm X, too often the truths of the past are obscured by the myths created by politics and commerce. Living Black History is an intellectual intervention for all Americans, but especially for those of African descent, that calls on us to stand up and safeguard the legacies of those who came before us.
Number 47, a fourteen-year-old slave boy growing up under the watchful eye of a brutal master in 1832, meets the mysterious Tall John, who introduces him to a magical science and also teaches him the meaning of freedom.
The story you are about to read concerns certain events that occurred in the early days of my life. It all happened over a hundred and seventy years ago. For many of you it might sound like a tall tale because I am no older today than I was back in the year 1832. But this is no whopper I'm telling; it is a story about my boyhood as a slave and my fated encounter with the amazing Tall John from beyond Africa, who could read dreams, fly between galaxies, and make friends with any animal no matter how wild.
In his first book for young adults, best-selling author Walter Mosley
weaves historical and speculative fiction into a powerful narrative about
the nature of freedom. 47 is a young slave boy living under the watchful eye
of a brutal slave master. His life seems doomed until he meets a mysterious
runaway slave, Tall John. 47 soon finds himself swept up in an otherworldly
battle and a personal struggle for his own liberation.
Made the Difference: Life Lessons My Mother Taught Me
Now, just in time for Mother's Day 2006,
Bishop Jakes brings us a book that celebrates motherhood and promises to be
his most intensely personal book yet.
Driven by the Bible and stories straight from his own life and offering praise, inspiration, and instruction, T. D. Jakes has written a must-have for daughters and sons, brothers and sisters, parents and grandparents-and anyone else who has ever felt the mighty power of a mother's love.
Sweet innocent Yarni, from a well-to do family, by chance, meets Richmond's notorious drug kingpin, Des. Immediately they develop an astronomical love, which separates her from her family and friends. But when Des, is sentenced to life in prison, she will learn, being a hustler's wife isn't as easy, with her sole provider behind bars.
Travel with Yarni, as she survives when the script if flipped. At times she plays the game, and at other times...the game plays her. Her journey is filled with laughter, tears, failures, triumphs and perseverance.
Nikki's debut novel is a smorgasbord of manipulation, street-life, greed, betrayal, envy, money, power and revenge.
Pimp: The Story of My Life
Iceberg Slim (Robert Beck)
Robert (Iceberg Slim) Beck's first book is told without bitterness and with no pretense at moralizing. It is the smells, the sounds, the fears and the petty triumphs in the world of the street pimp.
Love of My Own
Format: Hardcover, 288pp.
Zola Denise Norwood is a young hot editor in chief of Bling Bling, (the magazine �for people who want everything!) who’s at the top of her game, ruling the roost in business as well as the bedroom. Having discovered �the power of three� (not tying herself down to just one guy) Zola surrounds herself with a coterie of men : her best male friend, the gay Hayden; her Monday night man, Jabar, and enjoys stolen nights with married Bling Bling owner and media mogul Davis Vincent McClinton, a man who chases power at all costs’still, Zola dreams of finding true love.
Raymond Tyler, Jr., a favorite and classic Harris character has suffered a personal loss and picks up and moves to New York to re-build his life. As CEO of Bling Bling, Raymond struggles to enjoy his newfound success in business as he searches for love and meaning in his personal life. John Basil Henderson returns with a new lady in his life, and Raymond and Basil renew a friendship that is fraught with sexual tension. As Raymond examines his life and strains to move forward, tragedy strikes, and Raymond faces his biggest challenge ever.
As Zola and Raymond search for a love of their own, several characters from the past make cameo appearances and round out another E. Lynn Harris classic tale. A LOVE OF MY OWN is filled with all the marvelous ingredients the author’s fans the globe over have come to love. Sit back and get ready as E. Lynn Harris takes you on another satisfying and rip-roaring ride.
Life of Langston Hughes, Volume 1: 1902-1941: I, Too, Sing America, Vol. 1
Poet, playwright, novelist, and a grand figure in the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s, Langston Hughes stands as one of the most extraordinary and prolific American writers of this century. As the first installment of a two-volume biography, this portrait of Langston Hughes depicts his life from his birth in Missouri in 1902 to the winter of 1941.
Rampersad recounts Hughes' early days in Kansas as a child of a family steeped in radical Abolitionism, with an ancestor who fought and died at Harper's Ferry in John Brown's band. Taught by his aged grandmother to revere freedom and justice, he nevertheless led a lonely life as a child. His mother left him in his grandmother's care while trying unsuccessfully to launch a career in the theater, and his father--a black man who seemed to hate blacks--abandoned him to find a business career in Mexico. Hughes grew into a highly disciplined and yet restless adult who found personal salvation in poetry.
Inspired by both the democratic chants of Walt Whitman and the vibrant forms of Afro-American culture, Hughes became the most original and revered of black poets. Rampersad's study traces the nomadic, yet dedicated spirit that led him--as a young man--to Mexico, Cuba, Haiti, Africa, Europe, the Soviet Union, China, and Japan, as well as all over the United States. During his travels, Hughes cultivated associations with a dazzling range of political activists, patrons, and fellow artists, including Paul Robeson, Zora Neale Hurston, Carl Van Vechten, Lincoln Steffens, Nancy Cunard, Ernest Hemingway, and Claude McKay.
Based on exhaustive research in archival collections throughout the country, especially in the Langston Hughes papers at Yale University's Beinecke Library, Rampersad's masterful work presents a vivid portrait of one of our greatest writers and a sweeping panorama of culture and history in the early twentieth century.
Format: Paperback, 336pp.
Addicted is the story of Zoe, an African-American female arts dealer. It traces her life from the time she first meets her husband, Jason, in the fifth grade, falls in love with him over a game of Twister in the eighth grade, loses her virginity to him in high school and eventually marries him. Everything seems perfect in Zoe’s life to her friends and family as she secretly deals with serious problems in her marriage.
After failing to get Jason to open up to her sexually, Zoe becomes involved in not one, not two but three extramarital affairs. By the time she seeks the aid of a prominent female African-American therapist, the walls of her picture perfect life have already started to crumble.
The book shifts into high gear as Zoe finds out that everyone from her lovers to her husband to her own mother are hiding secrets of their own. Her best friend, Brina, is physically abused by her alcoholic boyfriend, Dempsey. Zoe discovers under hypnosis that her fascination with sex stems from two incidents in her early childhood she had buried deeply into the crevices of her mind. She is stalked and attacked. The book comes to a head on a cold, dark mountain following a trail of murders and the true murderer is anyone’s guess. Addicted does for women what Fatal Attraction did for men. It will make a woman think twice before risking it all.
To Be Popular or Smart: The Black Peer Group
This book asks the questions why do some Black youth consider being smart synonymous with being white? What does blackness mean? How can we give youth the same confidence in academics as they possess in athletics and music? How can we use the peer group to reinforce academic achievement?
Cheetah Girls, The: The Junior Novel - Book #2: Junior Novel
Galleria, Chanel, Aqua, and Dorinda return for a cheetah-spotted sequel of diva-licious proportions, and now you can read all about it! The feisty foursome star in this junior novelization of the all-new Disney Channel original movie, chronicling the further adventures of New Yorks favorite musical teens! Plus theres an 8-page, full-color insert of photos from the film.
Preparing Black Youth for Success
Asks and answers the questions how can we reduce the dropout rate? Why does the motivation to learn decline as the age increases for most youth? Are we training or educating students? How can we identify and develop their talents? Read this very interesting book for some startling answers!
Interruption of Everything
Since Terry McMillan's breakout novel Waiting To Exhale surged onto the bestseller lists, critics and readers alike have been captivated by her irreverent, often-hilarious take on the issues faced by contemporary women. With The Interruption of Everything she picks up, pitch-perfect, the dilemmas of midlife: an empty nest. Hormones gone wild. Too many irrelevant demands and too little room to breathe.
Marilyn Grimes is about ready to jump out of her skin. She's the consummate wife and mother of three grown kids. She's got a no-great-shakes-but-a-good-provider of a husband, Leon; and a live-in mother-in-law, Arthurine, who comes with a bingo-playing beau, Prezell, and an elderly pooch, Snuffy. Marilyn's two best friends, Paulette and Bunny, are the quintessential take-no-prisoners, vintage McMillan girlfriends who will be there when Marilyn jumps, but . . . she's just not sure exactly where that will be . . . or when. First, she needs to remember what she used to love and call back some of her own postponed dreams. But just as Marilyn's plans for making changes are taking shape, life comes up with a few twists of its own. Suddenly Marilyn must reinvent just about everything: marriage, friendship, family-and not least of all, herself.
The Interruption of Everything is a triumphant testament to the fact that the detour is the path, and living life "by the numbers" never quite adds up.
of a Lost Girl
Kola Boof's long awaited autobiography "Diary of a Lost Girl" is nothing less than magnificent. Many will be spellbound by more than 90 pages detailing her terrifying experience as Osama Bin Laden's former mistress, but the Sudanese-born Novelist/Poet writes even more profoundly about the hardships of being vaginally circumcised, about witnessing her birth parents killed in her presence as a small child, about slavery and Arabism in Sudan, about being adopted and raised in the U.S. by African Americans, about her quest for true love, and in one particularly daring chapter, about her hopes for the future of her sons.
Add to that years of psychiatric treatment, a struggle with manic anger and quite a few daring romances other than Bin Laden and you've got the perfect ingredients for a feature film.
Readers will find themselves fascinated as innocent young Naima Bint Harith tragically becomes the vitriolic complicated temptress Kola. A doomed movie starlet, feminist activist and "kept woman"...who ultimately emerges as the loving mother, outspoken novelist/poet and professional cook that we know today as Kola Boof.
Throughout the book, Kola speaks in a voice so utterly naked, truthful and unpretentious that it's impossible not to fall in love with her.
Life: Fifth Anniversary Edition
Hardcover, 5th ed., 262pp.
Available at last, E. Lynn Harris's beloved first novel in a hardcover edition.
Just a few years ago, E. Lynn Harris was
selling his self-published novel Invisible Life out of the back of
his car. Today he is a best-selling publishing sensation, with more than one
million copies of his four novels sold. To celebrate Harris's incredible
success, and offer his fans the opportunity to own, at last, a hardcover
version of Invisible Life, Doubleday is proud to announce a special
edition of the book so many have cherished.
of a Video Vixen
Read an AALBC.com Book Review byKam Williams
Glass vases filled with marbles crashed all around us as he began tossing linens from the bed. As the marbles scattered, we laughed in unison ... I remember the exact moment that I first laid on my back for him ... My legs were wrapped around his waist and just before his body was to merge with mine, I noticed his upper right chest. On it was a tattoo with the words "Pain is Love."
Confessions of a Video Vixen is the widely anticipated memoir of Karrine Steffans, the once sought-after sexy siren who appeared in the music videos of multiplatinum hip-hop artists such as Jay-Z, R. Kelly, and LL Cool J. A top-paid video dancer, Karrine transitioned to film when acclaimed director F. Gary Gray picked her to costar in his film A Man Apart, starring Vin Diesel. But the movie and music video sets, swanky Miami and New York restaurants, and trysts with the celebrities featured in the pages of People and In Touch magazines only skims the surface of Karrine's life.
This memoir -- part tell-all, part cautionary tale -- shows how Karrinne came to be the confidante of so many, why she kept their secrets, and how she found herself in Hollywood after a life marked by physical abuse, rape, and drugs -- all before she was twenty-six. By sharing her emotionally charged story, she hopes to shed light on an otherwise romanticized industry.
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