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Showing posts from February, 2018

The Red Record by Ida B. Wells

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The Red Record by Ida B. Wells





There are so many aspects of history in the United States that are not openly discussed. The ramifications of an open discussion would lead people to recognize the true horror that is the African American experience in this country. I always find it fascinating that compared to the horrors of the past, Black people should now feel relatively safe, but that isn’t the case for many. Why? Because many of us are very aware of the past, the injustices that occurred and the scars that have been passed through history because of such violence. Scars that are never given the opportunity to heal. The Red Record was published in 1895 and is an open discussion by Wells of the Lynch Law of the time. Why is it so powerful? Because it lays bare the complete absence of value on the lives of African Americans. Because it proves that an African American could die at the whim of the mob, body flaming on the ground, or swinging from a tree while riddled with bullets. That m…

The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk

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The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk

                Logan has lost the love of his life. Autumn lost her best friend. Shay is twinless. None of them are okay and nothing is fine. The loss is with them everyday and it’s changed them all. The Beauty That Remains is their story, but its also the story of the ones they loved and the people that love them. The people who are with them as they gather the pieces and face one day at a time. I like that Woodfolk took her time with each individual’s story and each individual loss. I like that each main character was not only dealing with the loss, but that the loss changed each one and caused them to grapple with different aspects of themselves. Told in alternating first person narratives readers are given an in-depth look at each person after the loss which I think is important. Readers never get to know the characters outside of their loss and for a while it is that loss that defines them. Until they can find themselves again. And that …

Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King

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Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King


Stephen King is one of those writers whose books I buy the day they come out. They mark the highest on the "to be read" shelf and I can never get enough. But I've never read anything by Stephen King's son, Owen King. I found out about this books production a little over a year ago, when Stephen spoke about it at the National Book Festival. A world where the women have all gone to sleep and can't wake up. I was intrigued. This novel centered around the town of Dooling. The people living in this town had heard of the Aurora sickness but it seemed so far away. Hawaii and Australia are quite a distance away from the east coast of the United States and the information was so little that no one paid it much attention. That is until the women of Dooling started falling asleep and their bodies began encasing themselves in the cocoon. Video footage was everywhere. The news was full of images of hospitals full of women whose f…

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

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The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton





Imagine a world full of beauty. A place where you can choose how you look from the color of your skin, hair, eyes, size and change them on a whim. Welcome to Orléans. The people here, the Gris, were cursed by the God of the Sky and now their skin is grey, their eyes are red and their hair is like brittle straw. The Belles are from the Goddess of Beauty and use their arcana to change the Gris’s appearance and make them beautiful again. Each generation, the Queen chooses a favorite from the Belles. Camille always wanted to be chosen as the favorite. Her mother was the favorite of her generation and Camille along with her five sisters have been training all their lives to compete to be the Queen’s favorite and live in the palace. After being presented on the night of their sixteenth birthday they will all learn where they will serve in the kingdom. But they will also learn the truth about beauty and the arcana they’ve been bestowed with. They’ll also learn …

The Book of Unknown Americans by Christina Henríquez

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The Book of Unknown Americans by Christina Henríquez



Alma and Arturo moved to Delaware for their daughter. They had a life in Mexico. Their family is in Mexico. But after Maribel's accident they wanted to give her the best opportunities imaginable, so they immigrated to America. Arturo got a job in Pennsylvania with a company that would sponsor their visas. Times were tough but they had faith in the future. They had a home. And they had neighbors that would become family. Damn. This book is incredible. From the first two chapters I knew I would enjoy Henríquez's writing style. She already had me hooked. But as the story continued, I genuinely could not stop reading! The story is told through the eyes of Alma who immigrated to the US for her daughter Maribel, and Mayor, a teenager who lives in their apartment building and is slowly falling in love with Maribel. Their narratives are incredible and heart wrenching. The way each of them sees their family, situation, the US and Mari…