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The Testaments by Margaret Atwood

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The Testaments by Margaret Atwood


I’m going to cut right to the chase. This book is well written but we didn’t need it. I expected more. I wanted more and this fell flat. I’ve read The Handmaid’s Tale, more than once, and I genuinely enjoyed it. The single narrative of Offred lent itself to the story well and it was genuinely a terrifying society. I watched the first two series of the show and though I have my reservations about it, I still thought it was a good show. It does a great job answering questions that the book could not because of its singular narrative. It filled out the world.
This book revolves around three narratives: Aunt Lydia, who we know had a helping hand in stripping women of their sense of self and molded them to be controlled by the men of Gilead; Agnes, raised in Gilead with a Commander as father, privileged and set to marry well; and Daisy, a teenager raised in Canada hating Gilead and the abuses women endured that she’s learned about since she was a young chil…

Freedom Libraries: The Untold Story of Libraries for African Americans in the South by Mike Selby

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Freedom Libraries: The Untold Story of Libraries for African Americans in the South by Mike Selby


So many stories go untold. So many truths remain hidden. Certain areas of history that you weren’t even aware of become visible and it has the ability to shift the world as you see it. I considered myself well read in regards to the events of Freedom Summer and the works of Civil Rights activist that summer of 1964. Not a scholar or researcher but I had done my due diligence to be knowledgeable of a history, that as a Black woman, has affected my life in so many profound ways. But I have never heard of the Freedom Libraries and their significance to Freedom Summer until I came across this book. Now a whole new chapter of the racial injustices Black people have suffered in this country has been opened to me and I won’t lie, I was distraught while reading this. I love reading and always have. The thought of not being allowed to access books is terrifying and heartbreaking to me. To read of …

A Dream So Dark by L.L. McKinney

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A Dream So Dark by L.L. McKinney



Alice Kingston has been a Dreamwalker for a year now. Ever since the night her dad died and she left the hospital to find Addison Hatta killing a Nightmare. She shouldn’t have been able to see him, not with the Invisibility Verse he had cast earlier. Now she fights Nightmares in Wonderland and protects the Western Gateway. You know regular teenage girl stuff. But now she thinks one of her best friends, Chess, is dead after the largest Nightmare she’s ever faced attacker her at the high school. Her mom knows something is wrong but Alice thinks telling her the truth could endanger her life. And the Black Knight is still out there, searching for her, Hatta, the princess and the Eye.
I remember being intrigued by the first book in this series, the fresh take on Wonderland with a kick ass Black Alice who was a superhero in her own right, but I didn’t fall in love with the story. This book however is everything I wanted from the first book and more. One of the…

Motherhood so White: A Memoir of Race, Gender and Parenting in America by Nefertiti Austin

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Motherhood so White: A Memoir of Race, Gender and Parenting in America by Nefertiti Austin



I remember what it was like being pregnant with my son, flipping through the pages of What To Expect When You’re Expecting and preparing my house for a newborn. I was overwhelmed and excited. Motherhood hadn’t been a dream of mine, but with my husband I wanted an addition to my family. I didn’t gravitate towards books about motherhood having helped raise my two nephews and being around younger children throughout my life. It’s now after being a mother for eleven years, after knowing what it’s like to raise a Black child that I’ve gravitated towards stories of other Black mothers. This is a memoir outside of my realm. I don’t know what it’s like to adopt a child and what that experience entails. But the more Austin wrote about raising her Black son, who is only a year older than my own child, I felt a kinship. Nothing about being a mother is easy and raising a Black child adds a certain amount of …

The Shadow King by Maaza Mengiste

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The Shadow King by Maaza Mengiste


To put this simply, The Shadow King, is a really well written book that explores the history of the war that took place between Ethiopia and Italy in the 1930s. It tells the story of the women who fought the war, the challenges they faced, the struggle of the Ethiopian people during that time and the Italian colonel who forced innocent people off a cliff. The story begins at the end with Hirut in the 1970s waiting to meet Ettore. She has something that belongs to him and he has been looking for her for decades. But how they got to this meeting, begins when the war does with Hirut, a young woman with her father’s rifle and Ettore, an Italian Jew photographing both the living and dead as he served in the army.
One of the parts of this book that really sticks with me is the imagery. Mengiste writes the most beautiful, heartbreaking, descriptive imagery and her prose lends itself to building these images in a really amazing way. Certain phrases simply ling…

The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates

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The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates


Hiram had no memory of his mother. Which was strange considering he could remember everything else: the stories of others, the songs sung in the field and the words written on paper. But of his mother he knew nothing. Gone Nachez way he believed. Like many of the other Tasked, she was taken from her family and sold further south. He had his father and his brother, but they were both of the Quality, as much master as blood and the love of the father to son didn’t exist. That is until Maynard, the heir apparent of the plantation Lockless, drowned. Now Master Walker had to rethink what the future of Lockless would contain. But Hiram had other ideas. He was ready to run. Ready to take Sophia, the woman he was falling for, with him. Find the Underground and find freedom. But the story of his grandmother Santi Bess, lingered in him. The story of the woman who walked into the river one night, with forty others and disappeared, never to be seen again. This …

Never Caught: The Washington’s Relentless Pursuit of their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar

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Never Caught: The Washington’s Relentless Pursuit of their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge by Erica Armstrong Dunbar


Not too long ago I sat in a kindergarten classroom while the history of George Washington was taught. The same old repeated stories were told to this classroom of young children that I heard as a child: he had wooden teeth, he cut down an apple tree, he was the father of our country. My son once sat in that same classroom and heard those same stories A year later he would take a field trip to Mount Vernon and see the home of the famous George Washington. Now, my son was taught about slavery but not in connection with the first president. So, as he learned more about those who had been enslaved like Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman, I made sure to also inform him that when he went to Mount Vernon, he was also visiting a slave plantation that housed hundreds of enslaved people within its acreage. He was shocked, mortified and sad. They hadn’t showed him at the tender of age …