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Showing posts from May, 2018

We’re Going to Need More Wine: Stories by Gabrielle Union

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We’re Going to Need More Wine: Stories by Gabrielle Union



This was an easy to read and easy to enjoy memoir. Gabrielle Union gave us a very intimate portrait of her life, filled with her candor and her humor. It’s funny when you think about all of the stories that have been spread about Union and the tabloid headlines that have been thrown out there, to see that sometimes truth is funnier than fiction. I laughed through so many of these stories, where I was either simply caught off guard and unaware by her honesty or when she just happened to find herself in an extremely hilarious situation. This is her life and she chose to share this with the public.
I admire her bravery, coming out as a rape survivor and choosing to advocate for survivors. These are the conversations we need to have and that she chose to have in her book. But she also touched on so much more, like racism, colorism, sexism, success in Hollywood, marriage and sex. There is so much sex and I mean that in the best way p…

When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America by Paula J. Giddings

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When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America by Paula J. Giddings




Everything has a historical context. It’s important to understand and recognize that fact. All of the movements we’re seeing today have a historical context. We’ll take the Women’s March for example. There was quite a bit of criticism leveled at the Women’s March because of its approach to intersectional feminism and what that would mean moving forward. Those criticisms were valid and rooted in the history of women’s movements. This book is a comprehensive look at Black women’s participation in liberation movements throughout the history of the United States. It looks not only at their participation in liberation of women but their participation in the liberation of Black people as a whole. It also stresses that for Black women especially, the fight for equally has meant an assault from all sides. From white women not taking into account the issues important to Black women because they did…

Dear Martin by Nic Stone

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Dear Martin by Nic Stone



Set in Atlanta, Dear Martin, is the story of Justyce McAllister, a seventeen-year old Black boy from Atlanta, Georgia. The story starts off with an encounter between Justyce and a police officer where he ends up in handcuffs on the ground after having committed no crime. His world is forever shaken. All of the microaggressions he may have brushed off before, are now glaringly obvious. All of the people that surround him at the prep school he attends on scholarship are showing their true colors. He looks to Martin Luther King Jr. for strength. Writing in his journal letters to Martin, in an attempt to make sense of it all.
I’m an emotional wreck after reading this novel. Justyce could have been so many different young men I knew growing up. Seeing his life on the page, seeing all of his trials and tribulations and the injustice he faced is gut wrenching. There were moments in this book where my jaw dropped and I was so disgusted. Then I looked around and realize…

Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand in the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes

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Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand in the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes




I completely slept on this book. I could have read it earlier but I’m not sure if I should have read it earlier. I am a firm believer of “we read books when we’re meant too” and reading this book now, I understand what Rhimes means in ways I may not have earlier. I enjoy Rhimes’s shows and I enjoyed this book. I love the introspection, the candor, the humor. As fans we unintentionally put those we admire in glass houses where everything is perfect and happiness runs freely. Rhimes tears that glass house down and exposes herself and the journey she had to take to truly find happiness. I felt challenged while reading this book. Challenged to look at things differently and to see what I had been intentionally and unintentionally saying yes to. Reading about a successful Black woman, redefining and finding her happiness in inspiring. Rhimes found the strength to change her entire frame of thinking an…

Waiting Sucks: The Woes of Loving Book Series

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Waiting Sucks: The Woes of Loving Book Series




There is simply no way around it. When you begin a book series, unless the author decides to pull a Netflix and drop all of the books in the series in one day, there will be a wait involved before the sequel is available. Depending on the author, the next book could come out in a couple of months, a year or a few years. Some authors see the end in sight and know if their series will be a duology, trilogy or in some cases a heptalogy (see Rowling and the 7-part Harry Potter series), while others aren’t sure just how long the story will be before it finishes itself.

            I love series! I feel like the anticipation that comes with waiting for the sequels is part of the fun. It encourages me to reread the previous novels, trying to pick up on Easter eggs the author might have left behind. Series can allow for tremendous growth in characters as the story continues to be told. And the world building in series is usually incredible and I lov…

Dreams of Africa in Alabama: The Slave Ship Clotilda and the Story of the Last Africans Brought to America by Sylviane A. Diouf

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Dreams of Africa in Alabama: The Slave Ship Clotilda and the Story of the Last Africans Brought to America by Sylviane A. Diouf





It wasn’t until a few months ago that I had ever heard the name Clotilda. I had no idea that in 1860, the Clotilda sailed to the west coast of Africa and brought back with it to the United States over one hundred Africans, that were then enslaved in Alabama. I only learned about this because of the soon to be released Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" by the late Zora Neale Hurston, that highlights the life of Cudjo Lewis, who in the 1930s was the last living survivor of the Clotilda. It’s also around the time the east coast got quite a bit of rough weather and someone thought they had located the Clotilda. They hadn’t but I took that as a sign, that this was a history I needed to learn more about. Not only to satisfy my own curiosity but because this was a significant piece of African, African-American and American history. I started re…

Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" by Zora Neale Hurston

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Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" by Zora Neale Hurston




Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" is the book Zora Neale Hurston was never able to publish. She originally interviewed Cudjo Lewis at the behest of Dr. Franz Boas. Her report was meant for the Journal of Negro History. She would return and interview him over three months at his home in Alabama, learning of his journey from Africa, his life in bondage and his eventual freedom. This book is told through the words of Oluale Kossola, the man history now knows as Cudjo Lewis. He had been in the United States for over sixty years at the time this interview took place. Hurston tells this story with little of her own interjections and this allowed his passion for his home to come through. Regardless of the time that had passed, he still valued the memories of being in “Affica.” It was heartbreaking to read his story, to read his description of what life was like in Takkoi. His father a chief, …

Only Human by Sylvain Neuvel

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Only Human by Sylvain Neuvel

It’s been nine years since Eva, Vincent, Dr. Rose Franklin and General Govender disappeared in the alien robot Themis, and a lot has changed since. Unbeknownst to the people left behind on Earth, the four of them had been taken back to Esat Ekt, the alien planet where those responsible for the robot and for the destruction of one hundred million humans on Earth live. The Ekt were just trying to correct an error in their own judgement. Thousands of years ago, Ekts had come to Earth and quite a few bred with the humans, leaving traces of their DNA in part of the population. The Ekts were trying to eradicate those with their DNA. They were leaving Earth after realizing how much damage they had done and were trying to take Themis with them, unaware of the four human stowaways inside. The humans weren’t allowed to leave, and three of them ended up escaping back in Themis to Earth to find a world still in chaos. The United States has a robot and they’ve been usin…