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By Mcfadden, Bernice L.. 2002
In This Bitter Earth, Sugar Lacey is on her way out of Bigelow, Arkansas, where she’d come to break with… the past. With her worn leopard-print suitcase and her head held high, she walks past the prying eyes of its small-minded, cruel-hearted townsfolk, praying for the strength to keep going. She doesn’t stop until she arrives at her childhood home in Short Junction. Here she learns the truth about her parentage: a terrible tale of unrequited love, of one man’s enduring hatred, and of the black magic that has cursed generations of Lacey women. A powerfully realized novel that brings back the unforgettable characters from Sugar, McFadden’s bestselling debut, This Bitter Earth is a testament to the ultimate triumph of the human spirit. .
By Benilde Little. 1998
From the author of the smashing debut bestseller Good Hair comes The Itch, the stirring story of a crisis-torn woman… who discovers a depth of character and a sense of self she never knew she possessed.Abra Lewis Dixon is the envy of the fashionable, professional women of her well-heeled social circle. She leads a charmed life -- having attended all the right schools, married the right man, and started a successful film production company with her best friend, Natasha Coleman -- and seems like an ambassador from the world of perfection. It is only when her impeccable marriage turns suddenly shaky that her utopia is left in pieces.
By Derrick A. Bell. 1996
Just like the songs of a gospel choir, the pieces in this book give voice to the hardships faced by… African Americans. Through allegorical stories and fictional encounters, dreams and dialogues, it presents fresh perspectives on the different issues that concern blacks. Despite their tough subjects, however, these stories resound with laughter and compassion and a continuing theme of Christian love.
By D. 2007
The debut title from The Armory, a new high-quality street-lit imprint edited by Bed-Stuy's Kenji Jasper.There a young man living… in the infamous Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. He is an orphaned college student trying to get through his sophomore year at age twenty-three, years behind the traditional undergraduates. His two best friends, Will and Chief, are an ex-drug dealer and a computer hacker. And his boss, Tony Star, is the most dangerous man in Brooklyn, an arch-criminal with enterprises legal and illegal across New York City and beyond.Our young man's job is to pick up the weekly take from Star's establishments and deliver it to him at the end of a night. It's one day's work a week for the kind of pay the fortunate get in a year. The money covers his tuition and the small apartment he rents in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Life is simple. And simple means good.Then everything falls out of balance. Someone decides to rob him for the week's take, and leave him for dead. His boss, being generous, gives him until the end of the night to recover what's been stolen. But as the night moves forward and people start dying, this young man begins to learn the hard way that his chosen way of life is nothing but an illusion.
By Eric V. Copage. 2011
Thirteen-year-old Jordan Garrison is at a crossroads. He's just about to enter high school, and his biggest worries are his… new bottom-of-the-totem-pole status as an incoming freshman and his father's constant lectures about becoming a man. Growing further apart from his younger siblings-precocious eight-year-old twins-Jordan thinks his only ally is his grandmother, a hip sixty-two-year-old with a youthful glow that comforts Jordan, especially in the absence of his mother. But when his widowed father suddenly dies, Jordan finds the journey through puberty to adulthood all the more daunting. He feels alone despite the best efforts of his family and friends. He is resentful and confused about new responsibilities forced on him, and torn between acting with his heart or fulfilling the expectations of those around him. A mysterious neighborhood shopkeeper, Snackman, notices Jordan's dilemma and steps in as surely as Jordan's own father would have. He offers Jordan a dirty strip of kente cloth, which he says contains the answers to Jordan's problems. And through this strip of cloth, Snackman guides Jordan to the answer of what it is to be a Black man. But not before Jordan meets with an almost disastrous fire and realizes his true importance to his family. Dazzling and magical, Between Father and Son is a heartening story with a powerful message that adults and children alike will turn to time and time again.
By Charles W. Chesnutt, Richard H. Brodhead. 1993
The stories in The Conjure Woman were Charles W. Chesnutt's first great literary success, and since their initial publication in… 1899 they have come to be seen as some of the most remarkable works of African American literature from the Emancipation through the Harlem Renaissance. Lesser known, though, is that the The Conjure Woman, as first published by Houghton Mifflin, was not wholly Chesnutt's creation but a work shaped and selected by his editors. This edition reassembles for the first time all of Chesnutt's work in the conjure tale genre, the entire imaginative feat of which the published Conjure Woman forms a part. It allows the reader to see how the original volume was created, how an African American author negotiated with the tastes of the dominant literary culture of the late nineteenth century, and how that culture both promoted and delimited his work.In the tradition of Uncle Remus, the conjure tale listens in on a poor black southerner, speaking strong dialect, as he recounts a local incident to a transplanted northerner for the northerner's enlightenment and edification. But in Chesnutt's hands the tradition is transformed. No longer a reactionary flight of nostalgia for the antebellum South, the stories in this book celebrate and at the same time question the folk culture they so pungently portray, and ultimately convey the pleasures and anxieties of a world in transition. Written in the late nineteenth century, a time of enormous growth and change for a country only recently reunited in peace, these stories act as the uneasy meeting ground for the culture of northern capitalism, professionalism, and Christianity and the underdeveloped southern economy, a kind of colonial Third World whose power is manifest in life charms, magic spells, and ha'nts, all embodied by the ruling figure of the conjure woman.Humorous, heart-breaking, lyrical, and wise, these stories make clear why the fiction of Charles W. Chesnutt has continued to captivate audiences for a century.
By Lolita Files. 2000
Hollywood. The place people go to fulfill their dreams. But its reality is a cruel one: Opportunities are few and… the competition ruthless. Innocent hearts can suddenly turn dark, and the most loyal of friends can become bitter enemies. Desi, Sharon, and Bettina are three black women struggling to make names for themselves amid the glitz, glamour, and deception. Before the women can be swept away by the intrigue and intensity of the entertainment industry, they must answer the desperate calls from the ghosts of their pasts....But if they do, will the shadows of infidelity, abandonment, and murder destroy everything they've worked for?
By John Jennings, Craig Fischer, Frances Gateward, Rebecca Wanzo, William Lafi Youmans, Kinohi Nishikawa, Blair Davis, Nancy Goldstein, Daniel F. Yezbick, Sally Mcwilliams, James J. Zeigler, Qiana Whitted, Reynaldo Anderson, Hershini Bhana Young, Robin Means Coleman, Patrick F. Walter, Consuela Francis, Andre Carrington. 2015
When many think of comic books the first thing that comes to mind are caped crusaders and spandex-wearing super-heroes. Perhaps,… inevitably, these images are of white men (and more rarely, women). It was not until the 1970s that African American superheroes such as Luke Cage, Blade, and others emerged. But as this exciting new collection reveals, these superhero comics are only one small component in a wealth of representations of black characters within comic strips, comic books, and graphic novels over the past century. The Blacker the Ink is the first book to explore not only the diverse range of black characters in comics, but also the multitude of ways that black artists, writers, and publishers have made a mark on the industry. Organized thematically into "panels" in tribute to sequential art published in the funny pages of newspapers, the fifteen original essays take us on a journey that reaches from the African American newspaper comics of the 1930s to the Francophone graphic novels of the 2000s. Even as it demonstrates the wide spectrum of images of African Americans in comics and sequential art, the collection also identifies common character types and themes running through everything from the strip The Boondocks to the graphic novel Nat Turner. Though it does not shy away from examining the legacy of racial stereotypes in comics and racial biases in the industry, The Blacker the Ink also offers inspiring stories of trailblazing African American artists and writers. Whether you are a diehard comic book fan or a casual reader of the funny pages, these essays will give you a new appreciation for how black characters and creators have brought a vibrant splash of color to the world of comics.
The nation's capital that serves as the setting for the stories in Edward P. Jones's prizewinning collection, Lost in the… City, lies far from the city of historic monuments and national politicians. Jones takes the reader beyond that world into the lives of African American men and women who work against the constant threat of loss to maintain a sense of hope. From "The Girl Who Raised Pigeons" to the well-to-do career woman awakened in the night by a phone call that will take her on a journey back to the past, the characters in these stories forge bonds of community as they struggle against the limits of their city to stave off the loss of family, friends, memories, and, ultimately, themselves.Critically acclaimed upon publication, Lost in the City introduced Jones as an undeniable talent, a writer whose unaffected style is not only evocative and forceful but also filled with insight and poignancy.
By M.A.C. Farrant. 2011
This tell-all book by M.A.C. Farrant, whom Publishers Weekly has celebrated as "a brave iconoclast" and whose work the Globe… & Mail has said "bristles with moral fury ... at the absurdities of our accelerated age and a great dose of laugh-out-loud humour," offers her readers nothing less than The Strange Truth About Us.A three-part novel-length work of prose fragments, snippets, questions, speculations, and meditations, by turns philosophical, dark, comedic, and lyrical, it attempts to imagine a multitude of possible futures for our garrisoned world."Annotations About an Absence" is a series of 115 numbered annotations to the day-long ruminations of a retired couple living in a gated community attempting to create an imaginary novel in which they express their fears about the future: "We attempt to express the universal confusion of mind that is the main feature of contemporary life. Which is? We are afraid.""Woman Records Brief Notes Regarding Absence" is written as a series of notes to these annotations, providing (in the utterly blank spirit of transparency) a running satiric narrative on the project. Each of these "notes" is written as if it were a description of a late-night TV movie or the content of a wet Jehovah's Witness pamphlet left on a woman's doorstep that has taken hold of her mind."Other Prose Surrounding Absence" comprises twenty-seven prose pieces that take aim at a globalized world bludgeoned by the threat of "end times"-climate change, species extinction, pandemics, and really bad politics-that seem designed insofar as we are able to retain our status as "individuals."Unique in style and approach, engaging, enigmatic, controversial, and delightful, this book is an attempt to prick the bubble of our complacency in the face of the "awful atrocity" we've made for ourselves.
In fourteen sweeping and sublime stories, five of which have been published in The New Yorker, the bestselling and Pulitzer… Prize-winning author of The Known World shows that his grasp of the human condition is firmer than ever Returning to the city that inspired his first prizewinning book, Lost in the City, Jones has filled this new collection with people who call Washington, D.C., home. Yet it is not the city's power brokers that most concern him but rather its ordinary citizens. All Aunt Hagar's Children turns an unflinching eye to the men, women, and children caught between the old ways of the South and the temptations that await them further north, people who in Jones's masterful hands, emerge as fully human and morally complex, whether they are country folk used to getting up with the chickens or people with centuries of education behind them. In the title story, in which Jones employs the first-person rhythms of a classic detective story, a Korean War veteran investigates the death of a family friend whose sorry destiny seems inextricable from his mother's own violent Southern childhood. In "In the Blink of God's Eye" and "Tapestry" newly married couples leave behind the familiarity of rural life to pursue lives of urban promise only to be challenged and disappointed. With the legacy of slavery just a stone's throw away and the future uncertain, Jones's cornucopia of characters will haunt readers for years to come.
The nation's capital that serves as the setting for the stories in Edward P. Jones's prizewinning collection, Lost in the… City, lies far from the city of historic monuments and national politicians. Jones takes the reader beyond that world into the lives of African American men and women who work against the constant threat of loss to maintain a sense of hope. From "The Girl Who Raised Pigeons" to the well-to-do career woman awakened in the night by a phone call that will take her on a journey back to the past, the characters in these stories forge bonds of community as they struggle against the limits of their city to stave off the loss of family, friends, memories, and, ultimately, themselves. Critically acclaimed upon publication, Lost in the City introduced Jones as an undeniable talent, a writer whose unaffected style is not only evocative and forceful but also filled with insight and poignancy.
By James Earl Hardy. 2002
Do men and monogamy mix? It's not a question Mitchell "Little Bit" Crawford gave much thought to until his beaufriend… of almost two years, Raheim "Pooquie" Rivers, an All-American jeans model, heads to Hollywood to make his first feature film. As Mitchell soon discovers, the temptation to cheat is very real . . . and it seems to be everywhere. An ex even pops up hoping to pick up where they left -- and got -- off. While intrigued, Mitchell chalks all the attention up to "the married man" syndrome: one is much more desirable when he's attached to someone else. But as he continues to run into bisexual musician Montgomery "Montee" Simms, the look-but-don't-touch rule is put to the test. As he and Montee get closer, Mitchell's idealistic beliefs about commitment are challenged. Will he love the one he's with because he can't be with the one he loves?
By Colin Channer. 2012
Reggae's rebel spirit blazes in this hot selection of short fiction from Jamaica's Calabash Writer's Workshop. Set in the Caribbean… and the U.S.A., the stories sweep across a range of moods and genres to create a narrative LP of fascinating voices. From the old lady who gives a "how to" speech on beating children, to the schizophrenic singer who thinks he's Bob Marley, to the hotel maid who gets a sexual offer that she can't refuse, the diverse mix of characters are linked by the fundamental principle that all cliched conventions must be shouted off the page. In the proudly odd tradition of Jamaican music, the selections seek to entertain while asking daring questions that provoke new ideas into being.Contributors include: Colin Channer, Elizabeth Nunez, Marlon James, Kwame Dawes, Kaylie Jones, Geoffrey Philp, Rudolph Wallace, Konrad Kirlew, Alwin Bully, A-dZiko Simba, and Sharon Leach.
By Thulani Davis, Sarah E. Wright. 1969
"Sarah Wright's triumph in this novel is a celebration of life over death. It is, in every respect, an impressive… achievement."--The New York Times, 1969"Often compared to the work of Zora Neale Hurston, the novel was unusual in its exploration of the black experience from a woman's perspective, anticipating fiction by writers like Toni Morrison and Alice Walker."--The New York Times, 2009Sarah Wright's searing yet lyrical story of a Southern black woman's life during the Depression--a period seldom accounted for in African-American literature-- is as compelling as her protagonist's insistence that "this child's gonna live." In this lost literary masterpiece by a seminal figure in the Black Arts movement, a husband and wife struggle amidst the poverty of Maryland's Eastern Shore during the 1930s. "Saturated in harsh beauty," declares Tillie Olsen, "this book has been and still is for me one of the most important and indispensable books published in my lifetime."Sarah E. Wright, novelist and poet, was a former vice president of the Harlem Writers Guild and coauthor of Give Me a Child. She died at age 80 in New York City.
By James Kincaid, Percival Everett. 2004
Praise for Percival Everett:"If Percival Everett isn't already a household name, it's because people are more interested in politics than… truth."--Madison Smartt Bell, author of The Washington Square Ensemble"Everett's talent is multifaceted, sparked by a satiric brilliance that could place him alongside Richard Wright and Ralph Ellison . . ."--Publishers Weekly"I think Percival Everett is a genius. I've been a fan since his first novel. He continues to amaze me with each novel--as if he likes making 90-degree turns to see what's around the corner, and then over the edge . . . He's a brilliant writer and so damn smart I envy him."--Terry McMillan, author of MamaA fictitious and satirical chronicle of South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond's desire to pen a history of African-Americans--his and his aides' belief being that he has done as much, or more, than any American to shape that history. An epistolary novel, The History follows the letters of loose cannon Congressional office workers, insane interns at a large New York publishing house and disturbed publishing executives, along with homicidal rival editors, kindly family friends, and an aspiring author named Septic. Strom Thurmond appears charming and open, mad and sure of his place in American history.Percival Everett is the author of 15 works of fiction, among them Glyph, Watershed and Frenzy. His most recent novel, Erasure, won the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award and did little to earn him friends.James Kincaid is an English professor at the University of Southern California and has written seven books in literary theory and cultural studies. These books and Kincaid himself have gradually lost their moorings in the academic world, so there was nothing left for him to do but to adopt the guise of fiction writer. Writing about madness comes easy to him.
By Dorothy West, Adelaide M. Cromwell. 1975
One of only a handful of novels published by black women during the forties, the story of ambitious Cleo Judson… is a long-time cult classic. The Living Is Easy is delightfully wry and ironic humor--even bitchiness--of the novel coexists with a challenging moral and social complexity. "A powerful work."--Essence"Dorothy West is a brisk storyteller with an eye for ironic detail...a deft stylist and writer of social satire."--Ms."Long beloved for its wry and ironic humor, this novel continues to delight and challenge readers."--Feminist Bookstore News* Alternate of the Book-of-the-Month and Quality Paperback Book Clubs *Suggested for course use in:African-American studies20th-century U.S. literature
In fourteen sweeping and sublime stories, five of which have been published in The New Yorker, the bestselling and Pulitzer… Prize-winning author of The Known World shows that his grasp of the human condition is firmer than everReturning to the city that inspired his first prizewinning book, Lost in the City, Jones has filled this new collection with people who call Washington, D.C., home. Yet it is not the city's power brokers that most concern him but rather its ordinary citizens. All Aunt Hagar's Children turns an unflinching eye to the men, women, and children caught between the old ways of the South and the temptations that await them further north, people who in Jones's masterful hands, emerge as fully human and morally complex, whether they are country folk used to getting up with the chickens or people with centuries of education behind them. In the title story, in which Jones employs the first-person rhythms of a classic detective story, a Korean War veteran investigates the death of a family friend whose sorry destiny seems inextricable from his mother's own violent Southern childhood. In "In the Blink of God's Eye" and "Tapestry" newly married couples leave behind the familiarity of rural life to pursue lives of urban promise only to be challenged and disappointed.With the legacy of slavery just a stone's throw away and the future uncertain, Jones's cornucopia of characters will haunt readers for years to come.
By Elsie Augustave. 2013
"A gorgeous new novel about a Haitian adoptee finding her way in many different corners of the world."--Edwidge Danticat, New… York Times"Augustave, a first-time novelist, pens a well-balanced story about a young woman, caught between two worlds, who struggles to connect with her heritage...a polished narrative that addresses racism and cultural and class differences and provides a wealth of information about vaudou beliefs."--Kirkus Reviews"Augustave... illustrates the devastating rootlessness of cultural disaffiliation."--World Literature Today"The Roving Tree is both a song and a social essay. It provides a window on a world and rounds out by circling back to the prologue."--Asheville Citizen-Times"Augustave creates a stunning tale with beautiful language that dwells in the realm of magical realism...The characters are rich, complicated and full of color and nuance."--Mosaic Magazine"The Roving Tree is truly an enthralling debut novel that deserves a wide audience; readers will undoubtedly be enriched by their engagement with it."--SX Salon"The beauty of this book lies in its simplicity. An engaging read that packs a powerful punch."--Historical Novel Review"The Roving Tree is Elsie Augustave's debut novel, and I can't wait to see what she writes next. Augustave writes beautifully and it's obvious that she cares a lot about the subject matter she chooses. I definitely recommend The Roving Tree to anyone who likes reading literary fiction and/or to anyone who is interested in the ideas and history portrayed in the book."--Between the Covers"Augustave is a talented writer who brings her varied characters to life and shows readers parts of the world that few of us have experienced. Her book is an excellent anecdote to books about immigration that, intentionally or not, present the western world as the favored or inevitable destination...I strongly recommend The Roving Tree to all those who are interested in Haiti, Zaire, and African traditions more generally."--Me, You, and Books"A beautiful, layered, nuanced story about a woman finding herself."--NBC COZI TV, Essence Magazine summer reading pick"A fulfilling, exciting and ultra-lyrical read, The Roving Tree is really a novel about a lost soul's identity quest."--Kreyolicious.com"A fresh new voice who adds her own charming, beguiling brand of lyricism to the growing body of Haitian American stories. The Roving Tree is a unique and fascinating book, and I for one look forward to hearing more from this writer."--Lorna Goodison, author of From Harvey RiverElsie Augustave's debut novel explores multiple themes: separation and loss, rootlessness, the impact of class privilege and color consciousness, and the search for cultural identity. The central character, Iris Odys, is the offspring of Hagathe, a Haitian maid, and a French-educated mulatto father, Brahami, who cares little about his child. Hagathe, who had always dreamed of a better life for her child, is presented with the perfect opportunity when Iris is five years old. Adopted by a white American couple, Iris is transported from her tiny remote Haitian village, Monn Neg, to an American suburb.The Roving Tree illuminates how imperfectly assimilated adoptees struggle to remember their original voices and recapture their personal histories and cultural legacy. Set between two worlds-suburban America and Haiti under Papa Doc's repressive regime-the novel offers a unique literary glimpse into the deeply entrenched class discrimination and political repression of Haiti during the Duvalier era, along with the subtle but nonetheless dangerous effects of American racism.