AALBC.com eNewsletter - May 17th 2012 - Issue 192

AALBC.com eNewsletter - May 17th 2012 - Issue #192
The African American Literature Book Club - Celebrating Our Literary Legacy Since 1997

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In This Month's Issue:
AALBC.com Best Selling Books

AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books For March 1st through April 30th 2012

The Reverend's Wife (A Reverend Curtis Black Novel) By Kimberla Lawson RobyFiction

#1 - The Reverend's Wife by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#2 - One Blood by Qwantu Amaru
#3 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter
#4 - Love, Honor, and Betray by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#5 - Can I Be Me? by Esther Armah
#6 - Fifty Shades of Grey: Book One of the Fifty Shades Trilogy by E L James
#7 - An Accidental Affair by Eric Jerome Dickey
#8 - Echoes of a Distant Summer by Guy Johnson
#9 - Gettin' Buck Wild: Sex Chronicles II by Zane
#10 - Kindred by Octavia E. Butler


The Tithing Hoax: Exposing The Lies, Misinterpretations & False Teachings About Tithing By R. ReneeNon -Fiction

#1 - The Tithing Hoax: Exposing The Lies, Misinterpretations & False Teachings About Tithing by R. Renee
#2 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#3 - The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
#4 - I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
#5 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#6 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents from Writers Digest Books
#7 - When I Was a Slave: Memoirs from the Slave Narrative Collection from Dover Publications
#8 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife from Beacon Press
#9 - The Falsification of Afrikan Consciousness by Amos N. Wilson
#10 - Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man Movie Tie-in Edition by Steve Harvey


Checkout out AALBC.com's Bestselling Books for January and February 2012

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Dr. BenDr. Yosef Ben-Jochannan

Born December 31, 1918 in Gondar, Ethiopia, Dr. Yosef Alfredo Antonio ben-Jochannan, or "Dr. Ben", as he is affectionately known) has devoted the better part of his life to the illumination of the indigenous origins of African civilizations. By profession, he is a trained lawyer, engineer, historian and Egyptologist. Ben-Jochannan went to Egypt for the first time in 1939, and moved to Harlem, New York in 1945. Dr. Ben knew Malcolm X personally, and was a student and colleague of George G.M. James. He was exceptionally close to the late Dr. John Henrik Clarke. Since 1957, he has coordinated regular study tours and pilgrimages to the Nile Valley, directly exposing thousands of African people to the still visible splendors of ancient Egypt. Formerly adjunct professor at Cornell University's Africana Studies Department, Dr. ben-Jochannan has also been a professor-at-large at Al Azar University in Cairo.

Dr. Ben's book, A Chronology of the Bible : Challenge to the Standard Version, Published by Black Classic Press is a frequent AALBC.com Bestselling book.


Zetta ElliottZetta Elliott

Born in Canada, Zetta Elliott earned her PhD in American Studies from NYU in 2003. She has taught at Ohio University, Louisiana State University, Mount Holyoke College, Hunter College, and Bard High School Early College.

Her poetry has been published in the Cave Canem anthology and many other publications.  She won the 2005 Honor Award in Lee & Low Books' New Voices Contest, and her picture book, Bird, was published in October 2008. Her first play, Nothing but a Woman, was a finalist in the Chicago Dramatists' Many Voices Project (2006). Her fourth full-length play, Connor's Boy, was staged in January 2008 as part of two new play festivals: in Cleveland, OH as part of Karamu House's R. Joyce Whitley Festival of New Plays ARENAFEST, and in New York City as part of Maieutic Theatre Works' Newborn Festival.


Dr. Michael Bernard BeckwithDr. Michael Bernard Beckwith

Dr. Beckwith s achievement as a humanitarian and emissary of peace have been widely acclaimed. In 2003, his activities were enumerated when he was written into the Congressional Record of the 107th congress. He is the recipient of numerous humanitarian awards, some of which include: The 2004 Africa Peace Award, Thomas Kilgore Prophetic Witness Award, Howard Thurman Stained Glass Window Award by Morehouse College, a commissioned oil portrait for Morehouse s prestigious Hall of preachers, and the Humanitarian Award of the National Conference for Compassion and Justice.

Thousands gather weekly to receive inspiration from Dr. Beckwith at the Agape International Spiritual Center in Culver City, California. Together, Drs. Michael Beckwith and Rickie Byars Beckwith have written lyrics and music performed by the Agape International Choir in concert venues worldwide. Always in demand, their performances inspire peace and goodwill in the global community. They share their lives with their four adult children and six grandchildren.


Alice RandallAlice Randall

Randall grew up in Washington, D.C.  Later she attended Harvard University, where she earned an honors degree in English and American literature, before moving to Nashville in 1983 to become a country songwriter. Randall is the first black woman in history to write a number one country song.

She currently lives in Nashville, Tennessee and is married to attorney David Ewing. She is a writer-in-residence at Vanderbilt University and teaches courses including a seminar on the country music lyric in American literature.  Her latest novel Ada's Rules: A Sexy Skinny Novel was published by Bloomsbury USA on April 24, 2012.


Darryl PinckneyDarryl Pinckney

Pinckney was born in Indianapolis, Indiana and is a novelist, playwright, and essayist. He grew up in a middle class African-American family in the Midwest and was educated at Columbia University. He is a frequent contributor to the New York Review of Books, Granta, Slate, and The Nation.

Pinckney is the author of High Cotton, a semi-autobiographical novel about "growing up black and bourgeois" in 1960s America which was awarded the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction in 1992. Additionally, he won the Vursell Award for Distinguished Prose from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1994. Pinckney has also expressed his admiration for the long-running CBS soap opera, As the World Turns. His partner is English poet, James Fenton; the couple has been together since 1989. Pinckney lives in New York City and Oxfordshire, England.


Anasa MaatAnasa Maat

Dr. Anasa Maat was born in Newark, New Jersey. She graduated from Central High School in the city. She received her undergraduate degree from Montclair University, and a Doctorate Degree from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ. Anasa retired from Public Education in 2000. She has since written four novels, A Little Bit of Honey, 'Til Death Do Us Part, Kill or Be Killed, and her newly released novel, Wrong? (Nutany Publishing, January 20, 2012)

Anasa has chosen her hometown, Newark, as the backdrop for her novels. She continues to live in the city with her husband, Hadren. Anasa is the mother of two and the grandmother of five. She remains active in the city where she has served two terms as a District Leader and two terms as a member of the city's school board.  

AALBC.com Book Reviews (Fiction)

Khalil's WayKhalil's Way

On the pages of this entertaining and informative novel, author David Miller chronicles the ordeal of an 11 year-old African-American adolescent who s being teased by a couple of creeps about everything from wearing glasses to being uncoordinated.

The timely tome illustrates the modern hazards associated with having to negotiate a gauntlet of ongoing insensitivity. Yet it also offers a ray of hope via the ultimate triumph of an intrepid young survivor who summons up the gumption to enlist the support of adults as he confronts his abusers in a very constructive fashion. 


Princes of the RoadPrinces of the Road by David Covin

In David Covin's Princes of the Road, the author transports readers to the 1930s of America, where Jim Crow and racism ruled. The central characters are the black porters who worked for the Pullman Company, primarily the soon-to-retire Deacon Judge and the smarter-than-he-seems Ezekiel James Jones. The story gets going when Deacon is propositioned by a woman at church he's never met...

Princes of the Road is a good read. It takes you back to an uncomfortable time when lynching was common, the South was considered evil and dangerous for blacks, and African-Americans were second class citizens, if that. The book also reminds of us of a time when porters were well-respected in the black community for the decent wages they earned and the opportunity to see most of the country on the company's dime. We also learn of their private lives (such as how many of them had women outside of their marriages in different cities), ambitions (such as owning their own businesses), and even superstitions.

AALBC.com Book Reviews (Non-Fiction)


The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Poverty Manifesto The Rich And The Rest Of Us: A Poverty Manifesto by Tavis Smiley & Cornel West

Last summer, Tavis Smiley and Cornel West embarked on a cross-country bus tour to bring attention to the plight of the approximately 150 million citizens living at or below the poverty level. Some segments of the black community saw the dynamic duo s shining a light on the crisis as a slap in the face of President Obama, whose administration had already been the subject of biting criticism for its bailing out of Wall Street ostensibly at the expense of Main Street.

Now, the two inveterate firebrands share what they witnessed on that peripatetic caravan in The Rich and the Rest of Us, an eye-opening opus which discusses the burgeoning phenomenon of poverty in chilling detail via a combination of statistics and anecdotal evidence. And after making their case that time is of the essence, because the situation is rapidly deteriorating, Smiley and West close the tome with an urgent call to conscience and a dozen suggestions about what needs to be done next.


Blackla<strong>SH:</strong> How Obama and the Left Are Driving Americans to the Government Plantation Blacklash: How Obama and the Left Are Driving Americans to the Government Plantation by Deneen Borelli

Deneen Borelli is an African-American conservative whose message of limited government has made her very popular with the Tea Party movement. Lately, she s been a frequent guest on such Fox News Network shows as Fox & Friends, Geraldo Rivera, Sean Hannity and Neil Cavuto, to name a few.

Ms. Borelli apparently has a number of bones to pick with the black community, starting with taking President Obama to task for turning America into a welfare nation. A big hint that she might have an anti-Obama agenda is the fact that she placed a blurb from TV host Glenn Beck on the front cover of her new book, Blacklash.


The African-American Criminal Justice Guide by John V. Elmore, Esq.The African-American Criminal Justice Guide

There are over 7 million people either in prison, on probation or on parole in the United States. Of that number, about 40% are African-American, which means that about 3 million black folks are currently caught up in the criminal justice system.

That unfortunate statistic suggests that the average African-Americans is likely to have a potentially-serious brush with the law at some point, even if it s just a profile stop that never leads to any charges. So why not be prepared to handle any such encounter with the police, in order to prevent the situation from escalating to arrest or incarceration?  That is the thinking of John V. Elmore, a defense attorney who has dedicated his career to representing victims of our American society who have been wrongfully charged because of the color of their skin.

AALBC.com Videos


Troy on C-Span2National Black Writers Conference - The Role of Social Media

A panel discussion was held on how black writers, publishers, and journalists use social media. Grace Aneiza-Ali moderated. The panelists also responded to questions from members of the audience.

"The Role of Social Media: Black Writers Take Literature to the Web" was a program of the Eleventh National Black Writers Conference on "The Impact of Migration, Popular Culture, and the Natural Environment in the Literature of Black Writers." It was held by the Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn, New York.


Valerie Wilson WesleyVideos from the Harlem Book Fair - Newark, NJ - April 28, 2012

Here author, Valerie Wilson Wesley, Here she discusses her Tamara Hayle mystery series and gives her perspective on the publishing industry's perception of Black readers with Rutgers University's Jayne Anne Phillips.

You will also find video recordings of Bruce Welch author of They Made Me an Addict: An American Tale, J.M. Benjamin Author of the Ride or Die Chick series, Wahida Clark the Official Queen of Street Lit, Amiri Baraka's Tribute at the HBF Newark (This was a really good event), Dr. Joel Freeman Talks about the Rosetta Stone (the first ancient bilingual text recovered in modern times), Rahiem Brooks author of the crime thriller Con Test: Double Life, DeVaughn M. Lilly author of The Magnificent Life of Gravvy Brown, Gregg Burton Author of What Happens Overseas Stays Overseas and Stephanie Johnson and Rush Reid coauthors of Dying For Life.  Screenwriter, Richard Wesley and his wife Valerie Wilson Wesley are honored too.


The Book Look on AALBC.comThe Book Look - Cory Booker's Pre-Fire Announcement of the "Year of Literacy"

Here Newark, NJ Mayor Cory Booker announces the "Year of Literacy" for Newark and prophetically quotes James Baldwin's "The Fire Next Time" just 2 days before he is injured saving a neighbor from her burning house.

The Book Look is a regular feature on AALBC.com.  Look out for more coverage of authors and events.

AALBC.com Articles


A Streetcar Named DesireTennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire - Broadway Play Review

The 2012 Broadway production of Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire is a revival of the 1947 original. Williams received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1948 for Streetcar. This 65 year old work has become an American classic.  The fine cast for the 2012 production of Streetcar includes 2-time Golden Globe nominee Blair Underwood, in his Broadway debut as Stanley, Nicole Ari Parker ("Soul Food") as Blanche DuBois, Daphne Rubin-Vega ("Rent") as Stella and Wood Harris ("The Wire") as Mitch. Streetcar is directed by Emily Mann

Overall, Streetcar proved to be very entertaining and I thoroughly recommend it. The ability seamlessly to transfer Williams words from white characters to Black ones is a testament, to Emily Mann's direction of the talented actors, and the brilliance of Williams ability to capture the universality of our collective experience.  (read the full review)


Troy JohnsonChampioning African American Literature with Vision, Style and More Importantly Results

Meet Troy Johnson: Troy Johnson is the Founder and President of AALBC.com, LLC, one of the largest African American literature websites in the world. With over 20 years of consulting, telecommunications and financial services experience, Johnson also serves as a board member of the Literary Freedom Project. He has earned Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in engineering. This literary giant also holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from New York University s Stern School of Business. Always learning and moving forward, Johnson has completed Stanford University s Publishing on the Web course. Johnson has been featured in numerous print and digital publications. He lives with his family in Harlem, New York.

WMI: Tell us about the root for your love of books. Who ignited your passion for literature and what happened to cause you to know that you would work with literature?

TJ: I ve always loved books. As a child my mother read to me, and, from a very young age, I read on my own for fun. As a kid I even enjoyed reading the encyclopedia. We did not have many books in our home growing up, but we had a full set of the World Book encyclopedia and I m sure I read most of those encyclopedia volumes while I was still in grade school.  (Read the complete interview at http://www.writemoneyinc.com)


Payback Ain't EnoughAALBC.com Clients Make the NY Times Best Sellers List!

I started AALBC.com 15 years ago this October. Over years I've watched many writers over the course of most if not all of their entire careers. Their individual stories are all unique and very special to me. Sharing their work and individual stories is one of the things that makes my job really special.

Recently I received a few emails from authors informing me that they made "The List", as The New York Times Best Sellers list is often called. Later it dawned on me that most of Black authors on The List are current AALBC.com clients . Pretty cool, huh?

AALBC.com Film Reviews


The Pruitt-Igoe Myth (2011)The Pruitt-Igoe Myth - DVD Revisits Rise and Demise of Ill-Conceived Housing Project

What makes the movie oh so engaging are the earnest reminiscences by former residents, most of whom recount a similar story about how their initial enthusiasm about the complex had ultimately been supplanted by a deep bitterness and distrust of the establishment. Today, courtesy of 20-20 hindsight, it is easy for them to see that Pruitt-Igoe was never really given a chance to blossom once it had been unfairly marginalized by members of polite society as a haven for crooks, cheats and Welfare Queens deserving of their lot.

A thought-provoking, cinematic picking of the bones of the scattered exoskeleton of a once-promising poor man s penthouse.


Avengers Movie PosterThe Avengers - Superheroes Unite to Save the Planet in Marvel ous Comic Book Adaptation

Since we ve already met all the members of The Avengers, director Josh Whedon doesn t have to waste time familiarizing us with their unique abilities. Instead, the plot unfolds right on the heels of the post-closing credits scene of the previous sequel which had Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) ominously enlisting the assistance of Captain America for a dangerous mission with global ramifications.

So, it s no surprise that, at this picture s point of departure, we find Fury assembling The Avengers. After all, as the director of the top secret espionage agency, S.H.I.E.L.D. (an acronym for Strategic Home Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division), it is his job to protect humanity, especially from a diabolical villain bent on world domination.


Restless City Movie PosterRestless City - Harlem Provides Backdrop for Gritty Survival Saga

Restless City is the third release from the African-American Film Festival Releasing Movement (AFFRM) 

When Djbril (Sy Alassane) left his native Senegal for the U.S., he harbored high hopes of making it as a musician. But while pursuing his version of the elusive American Dream, the 21 year-old immigrant pays the rent by hustling bootlegged CDs and other assorted contraband on the street of lower Manhattan.

Afterhours, he retreats via moped to a rough side of Harlem where the struggle for survival only intensifies. Uptown, Djbril s Achilles heel is exposed when he takes an interest in pretty Trini (Sky Grey), the proverbial prostitute with a heart of gold.


Think like a Man movie posterThink Like a Man - $33MM Opening Weekend - Critics Lukewarm, Audience Raves

Comedian/actor/radio and television show host Steve Harvey shocked the world a few years ago when he added love guru to his repertoire with the publication of Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man. The popular relationship primer, which earned the #1 spot on the New York Times best-seller list. mapped out a step-by-step strategy designed to help any woman turn her man into Mr. Right merely by understanding and manipulating the male psyche.

Think Like a Man, the movie, is less an adaptation of the book than a battle-of-the-sexes romantic comedy revolving around a quartet of conniving females who secretly rely on the tenets of Steve s philosophy to try to land the men of their dreams. This proves easier said than done once the guys discover what the objects of their affection are up to, and then decide to beat them to the proverbial punch by reading the opus themselves.


Marley (2012) - Movie PosterMarley - Revealing Biopic Chronicles Personal Life and Musical Career of Revered Reggae Icon

When most people think of Bob Marley, what probably comes to mind is reggae, Jamaica and marijuana. But how did a street urchin raised by a teen-mom in a country shack with no electricity manage to become a beloved icon admired all over the world?

That little-known side of Bob s life story is the subject of Marley, an intimate biopic produced by his son, Ziggy, and directed by Scotsman Kevin Macdonald. Because of the participation in the project of so many relatives, friends and colleagues, the picture paints a fascinating portrait which fully fleshes out its subject, thereby resisting the temptation of merely placing him on a pedestal.


We the PartyWe the Party - The African-American answer to American Pie! - Film Review

Whether by design or merely by coincidence, it s impossible to ignore the fact that We the Party is being released the same day as American Reunion, the 4th installment in the American Pie series. After all, the original American Pie revolved around a quartet of horny, high school students competing to lose their virginity before graduation, and we find the testosterone-driven quintet at the center of We the Party in pursuit of the same rite of passage shortly before their senior prom.

However, despite sharing that deceptively-identical point of departure, We the Party actually proceeds to morph into something far more substantial than males merely bonding around the attempt to mate indiscriminately. For, this inner-city dramedy seamlessly blends that rather raunchy theme with a timely cautionary tale about the pitfalls of failing to plan for one s future. Plus, it has some inspired comedy and a cutting-edge score, featuring performances by a number of emerging hip-hop acts, including Pink Dollaz, The New Boyz and The Rej3ctz.


96 Minutes96 Minutes - Gangstas Carjack College Coeds in Character-Driven Crime Caper

Carley (Brittany Snow) is a sheltered college senior who s torn between roaming around exploring the country after getting her degree and going on to law school primarily to please her parents. She s caught up in an animated conversation about the future with her best friend, Lena (Christian Serratos), who is, in turn, concerned about her boyfriend and about making a smooth transition from campus to the real world.

The carefree coeds drive around Los Angeles, blissfully unaware that their world is on the verge of suddenly colliding with that of a couple of tough teenagers from the other side of the tracks. One, Dre (Evan Ross), is fast approaching a milestone of his own, having just ordered a cap-and-gown for his impending high school graduation. He hopes to be one of the few kids from his block to overcome the odds and actually make it out of the ghetto 


Chimpanzee Movie PosterChimpanzee - Orphaned Chimp Adopted by Alpha Ape in Disneynature Documentary

This delightful Disneynature documentary, narrated by Tim Allen and shot in the wilds of Africa s Ivory Coast, revolves around the adorable antics of a big-eared, infant chimp named Oscar. Co-directed by Alastair Fothergill and Mark Linfield, the film chronicles the little fellow s evolution from an overprotected momma s boy into a toddler suddenly forced into survival mode by circumstances beyond his control.

At the point of departure, we find 3 month-old Oscar living in the heart of the jungle where he s surrounded by a tight-knit, extended family of 35 chimpanzees. There, under the watchful eye of his doting mother, Isha, he plays with other youngsters while tentatively exploring the wondrous new world around him.  


AALBC.com Interviews


Kel MitchellKel Mitchell The Motorcity Interview

Born in the Windy City on August 25, 1978, Kel Mitchell began his acting career at the tender age of 12 with the ETA Creative Arts Foundation. A couple years later, he got the opportunity of a lifetime when he flew to Florida to be a part of a new children s television network that would later become Nickelodeon.

A versatile talent, Kel recently stepped behind the camera to write and direct She Is Not My Sister, an upcoming, faith-based feature film about bullying and forgiveness. Here, he talks both about that movie and about providing the voice of Dutch on the new Disney XD animated series Motorcity.


Christina MilianChristina Milian the The Voice Interview

Born in New Jersey on September 26, 1981, but raised in Waldorf, Maryland, Christina Milian is a versatile talent whose resume includes film, television, theater and music. She recently appeared in the television movie "The Christmas Cupid" and on "CSI" and enjoyed a recurring role as the voice of Esther on "Family Guy."

Christina subsequently co-wrote the Jennifer Lopez hit "Play" and she was one of the co-writers of Justin Bieber's smash "Baby." Here, she talks about serving as the Social Media Correspondent on NBC s The Voice, where she brought viewers closer to the competition as bridge between the on-air and online experiences. That enabled the show s fans to appreciate the entire production process through exclusive interviews, video, photos, news about the coaches and artists and a live twitter feed.


Ziggy MarleyZiggy Marley The Marley Interview

David Nesta Ziggy Marley was born in Trenchtown, Jamaica on October 17, 1968 to Bob and Rita Marley. A five-time Grammy-winning musician, actor, artist, activist and humanitarian, Ziggy has enjoyed a prominent presence on the public stage for over a quarter-century.

The title of his latest album, Wild and Free, is a little ironic, given his time-consuming commitments to family, philanthropy, songwriting, producing, studio work and touring. Ziggy also continues to head Tuff Gong Worldwide in honor of his father s own music label Tuff Gong Records, working on the re-launch of the official Bob Marley website and an exhibit at the Grammy Museum in L.A. Ziggy divides his residency among Florida, Jamaica and California, and has his own website at: www.ziggymarley.com. Here, he talks about Marley, a new documentary about his father.


Steve HarveySteve Harvey - The Think Like a Man Interview

Born in Welch, West Virginia on January 17, 1956, Steve Harvey is a media conglomerate personified whose career began doing stand-up in the mid-1980s. His success as a comedian eventually led to a long stint as host of It s Showtime at the Apollo, multiple TV shows and movies, assorted acting roles, and to hosting, writing and producing.

Here, Steve talks about the opus screen adaptation titled, Think Like a Man, starring Taraji P. Henson, Michael Ealy, Gabrielle Union and Kevin Hart.


Toni MorrisonInterview - Toni Morrison By Christopher Bollen Photography Damon Winter

It goes without saying that Morrison s literature tackles the national themes of racism and sexism, but her work also resists many of the pervasive liberal dogmas of her time, particularly the black movement s interest in only presenting positive portrayals of black characters and second-wave feminism s tendency to diminish the significance of motherhood that topic being a clear set piece of her 1987 masterwork Beloved.

It is one kind of bravery to refuse to write under the paradigm of the white-master narrative, but it is quite another kind of bravery to not defect to the most obvious and immediate rival.


Pyramid Books

"African-American books and authors are our specialty: fiction, nonfiction, self-help, metaphysics, mysteries, Egyptology, Pan African, spiritual, science fiction, self-published and hard to find books. Pyramid Books Editing Services is available to aspiring and published writers. Pyramid Books celebrates Black History Month 365 days a year to educate all people about the African Diaspora. We stand for Hope and Possibility in the book industry"

Discover More Book Stores: See AALBC.com's List of All the Black Owned, Independent Book Store in the United States


ESSENCE Presents Ledisi Better Than Alright: Finding Peace, Love & PowerESSENCE Presents Ledisi Better Than Alright: Finding Peace, Love & Power

ESSENCE is pleased to collaborate with powerhouse musician Ledisi for a soulful and enlightening collection of the singer's inspiring meditations, quotes, and anecdotes charting her astonishing transformation as a woman and an artist.  Ledisi, who has been described as having a mix of Tina Turner's energy, Nina Simone's brilliance, and Ella Fitzgerald's range, is a multiple Grammy nominee who has quickly connected with ESSENCE readers because of her authenticity and tenacity to strive for success on her own terms.

Over the past four decades ESSENCE introduced readers to inspirational voices such as Susan L. Taylor (In the Spirit; Lessons in Living; All About Love); and New York Times Best-Sellers Iyanla Vanzant (In the Meantime, and One Day My Soul Just Opened Up), Juanita Bynum (Matters of the Heart), and Bishop T.D. Jakes (Before You Do" and "Reposition Yourself).


Flip BookAlways Upbeat / All That (Young Adult Inspirational Fiction)  — “Flip” Book written from two points of view

Always Upbeat (Cheer Drama): Savvy Charli Black seems to have the perfect life. Pampered and confident, she has her junior year at Lockwood High all mapped out. Date the hottest baller in school, check. Become captain of the varsity cheerleading squad, check. Her crew rules the school. But just as everything falls into place, her world begins to spin with one betrayal after another.

All That (Baller Swag): Cocky quarterback Blake Strong s number one goal is to stay in the game, lead his boys to victory, and score a spot at his dream school. But his overbearing father wants Blake in the Southeastern Conference. Their difficult relationship hangs by a thread when the Strong family gets unsettling news. Will they reconnect and realize that there s more to life than football?


PoetsAALBC.com Archives of Past Events

Read about these wonderful and often historic events that celebrate our literature:  The Harlem Book Fair 2000 (Harlem), Go On Girl! National Convention. 2000 (Chicago), Sacred Circle/Spoken Word 1999 (Newark), A the National African American Cultural Expo 1999 (Philadelphia), National Black Writers Conference 2000 (Brooklyn), Book Expo America 2000 (Chicago), and so many more.

Pictured (l-r): Laini Mataka, Toni Blackman, Vanessa Richards, Sonia Sanchez, Tracie Morris, Imani Uzuri during Sacred Circle/Spoken Word, an International, Intergenerational Three-Day Festival Celebrating the Spoken Word presented by NJPAC in 1999 (man that was a good event!)

Book Events & Related Events


African American Pavilion at Book Expo America (BEA) - Jacob Javits Convention Center, New York City, Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Amber Communications Group Inc's 2012 African American Pavilion Booth at BookExpo America booth will be hosting a special "Welcome to BookExpo America Michael Baisden" Reception and Book signing for the internationally renowned author, radio and television talk show personality, and a Celebration and Book signing of New York Times and Essence Magazine Best-Selling Author Zane and the Strebor Books Legacy, at the Jacob Javits Convention Center, New York City, Wednesday, June 6, 2012, 1:00pm - 5:00pm in the ACGI African American Pavilion Booth # 3486.


National Black Book FestivalNational Black Book Festival, June 8-10, 2012 - 5th Anniversary - Houston, TX

New York Times bestselling authors Walter Mosley and Eric Jerome Dickey will join urban fiction powerhouse Wahida Clark and successful mainstream fiction author Mary B. Morrison as headliners at the 2012 National Black Book Festival. This 5th annual event will be held June 8-10, 2012 in Houston, Texas, at the downtown Doubletree Hotel. More than 100 African-American authors and thousands of book club members and readers will converge in Houston during the largest indoor gathering of African-American authors in the world. Participating authors from more than 30 states will showcase, sign and sell their books during the weekend event.


Iyanla VanzantNBCC Women's Empowerment Summit, July 21, 2012 at the Atlanta Loews Hotel

What happens when a collection of women the brightest minds, deepest hearts and strongest souls come together for one day to talk about the power of women? You get the NBCC Women's Empowerment Summit, July 21, 2012 at the Atlanta Loews Hotel.

Learn about the power of the mind, the power of tradition, the power of family, the power of love, the power of you
through the voices of some of the world s leading authors and thinkers including the incomparable Iyanla Vanzant, Pearl Cleage, Dr. Bertice Berry, A'Lelia Bundles, Alice Randall, Valerie Boyd and many other dynamic women authors.

So, make a weekend of it. Explore the capital city of the South that is Atlanta on Friday, then on Saturday have your mind, heart and soul replenished through the inspirational words of strong African-American women and the unparalleled bonding of like-minded readers.  Space is limited, so please secure your position today at http://www.nationalbookclubconference.com/womensummit.html


Black Writers Reunion & Conference 2012Black Writers Reunion & Conference - August 29-31, 2012, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Black Writers Reunion & Conference 2012 ensues Labor Day weekend in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at the Westin Beach Resort & Spa in conjunction with the first Write Time Black Writers Retreat. The conference, held August 29-31, offers the trademark interactive hands-on writing workshops, seminars, inspirational sessions, book sales, exhibitor expo, sponsorship opportunities, and networking events. From September 1st to 3rd, the retreat will lend inspired conference attendees and writers simply seeking a few days away from busy lives the chance to focus on their writing for extended blocks of time. 


logoLand a book deal with Black Expressions, Grand Central Publishing, Urban Books or Charisma House during the at the Faith and Fiction Retreat

Editors are looking for new authors during pitch sessions taking place in Dallas June 29-30 — Have you self-published your book? Got thousands of copies printed, only to have them gather dust in your garage? Or maybe you ve published an e-book on Amazon.com for $.99 and made a few hundred dollars. In today s publishing landscape, you can use a traditional book deal to build your reader base and THEN self-publish.  Or maybe you ve had a traditional book deal and are looking to change direction in your career. Perhaps you re looking for a literary agent who can get you past the gatekeepers in publishing.

If any of these apply to you, you should check out the Pitch Session taking place in Dallas June 29-30 (if you can t travel you can pitch via phone and SKYPE). We ve got editors coming from all over who are LOOKING to sign authors. Here s who s coming:

 Carol Mackey Black Expressions (You can pitch your self-published title to Black Expressions for publication), Latoya Smith Grand Central Publishing (The publishers of Kimberla Lawson Roby and Carl Weber and are LOOKING for new authors), Natalie Weber Urban Renaissance, Joylynn Jossel Urban Christian (Urban Christian has signed authors from the pitch session for the last two years!), Jevon Bolden & Adrienne Gaines Charisma House (If you write Christian fiction or non-fiction, you need to talk to them), Dawn Michelle Hardy Literary Agent for Miasha and Terri Woods, and owner of Dream Relations PR. (She is looking for new clients.)

If your book has what it takes, then $75 to speak with one of these deal makers is an investment in your future. Go to http://aalbc.it/pitchsession to register. Registration closes June 1st. 



Tavis and CornelVideo Distribution Service

Join SmileyBooks by taking advantage of our growing Video Distribution Network.  If you have a book trailer or commercial that you would like to place on high quality websites that reach you audience with laser like precision then our service is for you! 

You will be able to place your video on up to 10 different websites including throughout AALBC.com's website, throughout Mosaicbooks.com website, the homepage of Blacknews.com, the homepage of African Americans on the Move Book Club's homepage, Cushcity.com home page and more!  Visit these websites to see exactly how the video are inserted.


Video Creation ServiceVideo Creation Service 

Would you like a video to promote your book or business?  AALBC.com now offers inexpensive video creation.  With rates starting as low as $89 for a 45 second video, this service is within everyone's budget.   We provide you with the raw video which you can add directly to your website or share via YouTube or Vimeo.   You can even take advantage of AALBC.com's network with our Video Distribution Service to increase the visibility of your book trailer or commercial.


Look out for More Great Services from AALBC.com Coming Soon!

  • Manuscript Editing Service
  • One On One Internet Consulting 
Information & Housekeeping

ABLEAALBC.com is a Proud Member of A.B.L.E. - The Alliance for Black Literature and Entertainment

ABLE (the Alliance for Black Literature & Entertainment) is a group of media entities dedicated to preserving and growing black literature, entertainment, art and culture while supporting our collective and our individual organizations.  Stay tuned for information about this emerging movement.


Obama Says ReadAALBC.com eNewsletter Management


Where is AALBC.com's founder Troy Johnson speaking next?  Visit: http://aalbc.it/troyspeaks


A Luta Continua,

Troy Johnson
President, AALBC.com, LLC
Toll Free: 866-603-8394
Email: troy@aalbc.com

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Last Updated: Monday, September 18, 2017