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Cynique

Between The Covers

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I'm not ordinarily impressed with urban lit, but a novel of this genre was my book club's selection for this month, so I dutifully undertook the task that would allow me to participate in the group discussion that would take place at an upcoming meeting.

The book was written by Carl Weber, who I am vaguely familiar with, and it is entitled "Up To No Good". In the version I had, the text was in large print and I'm sure this contributed to my finding it an easy read. My old eyes need all the help they can get.

As I got into this tale of contemporary black life, the next thing I found encouraging was that the book had obviously been proof-read and edited. So I wasn't distracted by the typos and bad sentences and incorrect grammar that often clutter up self-published efforts. I vaguely remember hearing somewhere that Weber only comes up with a rough draft manuscript and then relies on a book doctor to turn out a finished product that is professional and polished. Thank you, Mr. Weber!

The book was, indeed, well-written, and well-plotted, heavy on dialogue, and short on long descriptive passages, with just enough Zanesque sex scenes to spice things up. The story was a fairly plausible one replete with interesting plot twists and believable characters who, although not particularly likeable, were at least authentic in their stereotypical vein. Even the bittersweet ending had a certain appeal.

As is the case in melodramatic novels, Carl Weber's "Up to No Good" dealt with people whose lives became entangled by circumstances that were the result of irresponsible behavior and the random events that complicated such matters, - while Fate, as usual, had the final say...

My final say? I liked the book. it reminded me of how engrossing reading can be as a past time and revived my waning affinity for the printed word.

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Yikes! While doing the research for my book club assignment of presenting a profile of the author of "Up To No Good", I realized I was spelling the author's name wrong. Inexcusable! I apologize! My bad. It should be Carl WEBER, not WEBBER! :o

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Cynique you can always go back and edit (or at least you should be able to).

Carl Weber has been around a long time. Actually he is one of the most prominent African Americans in the field. The comparison with a self-published urban author is like comparing apples to oranges. http://aalbc.com/authors/carlweber.htm

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I did use the edit feature to correct the spelling of Weber's name, Troy. (I should've left it at that instead of pleading guilty to the incorrect spelling.)

Yep, Weber is well-known, tho his work, while enjoyable, is not taken that seriously. Why? Because it is indeed urban lit; but well-written urban lit. I'd consider him just a cut above Tyler Perry; more on a level with Zane. Kinda like a guilty pleasure.

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Cynique. It would be interesting to know why you write Weber work is not taken seriously. Please explain sometimes I can get out of touch from my vantage point.

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Carl Weber is pretty well-known. I have only read one of his books, "The First Lady," and it was a nice enough book, although for some reason I wasn't thrilled enough to seek out any others by him. That was years ago though, so maybe it is time to give some of his recent works a try.

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"Up To No Good" is my second book by Weber. I can't even remember the name of the first one I read, so I guess the only reason I got around to reading another release by him was because my book club made the choice for me. This is not to say that I didn't enjoy his writing, but it is to say that I wasn't impressed enough to become an avid fan.

The answer to your question, Troy, is a familiar rationale. Weber's formulaic books are pop fiction, - like soap operas in content. He'd never be nominated for a Pulitzer or Nobel prize because the literary community doesn't take his genre seriously. Maybe sociologists and anthropologists would give some serious attention to Carl Weber's body of work because it mirrors African American culture.

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