Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Man In My Heart By Anita Sneed-Carter

Let me first admit that prior to reading this book I assumed that it would run me off from reading it. Aware of the fact that Anita Sneed-Carter is a minister, I assumed that the content of this book through out its entirety would be over populated with redundant biblical scriptures and an unentertaining plot. The Man in my Heart is anything but that. This novel gets down to nitty-gritty IMMEDIATELY. From the beginning of the story you are instantly pulled into the life of Valeesa, a woman on her way to walking down the isle. Despite of discernment and her intuition kicking in to provide all the signs she desperately needs to take heed to, she makes a conscious decision to proceed with the wedding. Like any other woman in the world as, Jill Scott stated it best on her last album, "Ms. Jackson just wants to be loved." Unfortunately like many women who make some not so smart choices and decisions when it comes to love, she finds herself constantly getting burned over and over again. As a result, this poor baby had to hit rock bottom. However with maturation and accepting full responsibility for the role that she assumed for making unhealthy relationship choices, she comes to realize and fully understands that we as mere mortals and women are not in control when it comes to finding a soul mate. That is the role of the heavenly father and the coming of the two is a whole lot more than finances, outer appearances, and intimacy. I love this book because it is so true to life and as a single woman I could truly relate. This book would not only be a great book for individuals desiring to gain spiritual awareness. It could greatly serve as an excellent support guide for single weary women everywhere who truly need to know and understand that the true man of their hearts will comes from the creator. A job well done Minister Anita Sneed-Carter.

Circumstances By Yolanda M. Johnson

A true fan of fictional reads, I can usually figure out most of the time how a novel will end however, Circumstances writen by Yolanda Johnson has thrown me for a serious loop. Renee Mathews, a hard working independent sister simply wanting real love from her mother Barbra Jean ends up rejected and disappointed everytime. Due to Barbra Jean enduring so many unfortunate occurances in her life she misplaces her pain inappropriately on her only daughter. On top of the dysfunctional mother and daughter situation, Marlene, Renae's opportunistic best friend is anything but a real friend. Charlie, Renae's friend who convinces her to relocate to San Diego to escape from all of the madness seems to be the only one to purely have her best interest at heart. Afraid of flying on airplanes, Renae discovers that relocating from Colorado to San Diego was the best decision she could've ever made. Free at last and no longer having to worrying about her mother and Marlen calling only simply to use her,Renae finds herself becoming romantically involved with two great men and having to make a tough decision in regards to whom she will spend the rest of her life with. After making the choice on who she decides to marry and assuming that her family most likely will not attend the happiest day of her life, Renae decides to send wedding invitations out to her mother and other relatives in Colorado. Surprisingly, they show up. Needless to say the ending of this book this book provides a cliff hanger like no other. Way to go Ms Johnson. I can't for the saga to continue in your second book.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Black College Sabbatical by Tracie E Christian

Discussing a college experience is one thing however,writing about the African American college experience is another! Author Tracie Christian takes us into the world of four young ladies from totally various backgrounds linked together through fate. As if freshman year on a black college campus is not overwhelming and challenging enough, Kyla, Ananda, Tina, and Cierra all face tribulations that easily amount up to that old saying,"what dose not kill you will definitely make you stronger."
From the deception of lovers to sibling rivalry and deceit,in this juicy read ladies and gentlemen,you get it all! Through her initial literary contribution to the world, Ms. Christian does an terrific job at allowing individuals unaware of the black college experience some eye opening insight and the opportunity for those who attended an historical black institution the opportunity to reminiscence. I hated that the Fall Quarter had to come to an end however,I'm just dieing to read Winter Quarter the 2nd Edition. Hats off to you Ms.Tracie.

The Streets Don't Love You Back By Robert D. Boyd Jr.

Being a native of Gary Indiana, I know the history of Gang Violence and how many young African American males lost their lives due to looking for love through a brotherhood destined for demise. " The Streets Don't Love You Back" provides the true history of notorious gang and drug dealers from the metropolitan Detroit area. Survivor and Author Robert Boyd not only shares his story through his book,he plays a big part in this story as well. Boyd did serve his time in prison for the soliciting of drugs but managed through the grace of God to turn his life around after being released.

During this phase in Boyd's life, he associated himself with many of the individuals enclosed within his book. All of these gangster icons made millions and millions of dollars in the drug cartel business. From the 70's through the mid 90's, individuals such as Maserati Rick, Best Friends Enforcement Chief Reginald Brown, Drug Lord Richard Wershe Jr known as (White Boy Rick),and Kalasha/ Akrawi Syndicate suffered a fate of either death by a rival or simply a life sentencing in prison.

I recommend that this book be placed in all juvenile facilities,and Second Chance Departments through out the country to get our troubled youth back on the right path. More realistic books providing the fate of young adults choosing to join a gang or sale drugs such as this one should be at their disposal.

Who Is He To You By Monique Mensah

Like no other fictional book I've ever read! Two thumbs up for Mensah!

Being an avid reader, I must admit that a book over 240 pages usually does not keep my attention. I can assure you that this one will. Simone the main character in this book lives one terrible life. Only 14 years of age she endures both family related stress as well as school dysfunction. They say that sometimes beauty can be a curse and in this case it truly was. Born a bi-racial child to parents Jessica and Anthony Pembroke, Jessica not only catches hell at school with jealous young ladies and young men with their hormones racing everywhere, a family member ends up desiring, wanting, and having the wrong type of love for their very own child. The twist and turns in this book keep you flipping the pages only leaving you wanting more.
Other characters in this book such as Ryan only add more to this very exciting plot. As Ryan enters into a hard but yet "self love" phase in her life, she comes to also find that in the process of loving herself, she ends up saving a teenagers life by making a very rash decision. I'm looking forward to reading Mensah's next book. I'm curious to find out how Simone is coping with everything that has happened to her thus so far.

Words of a Journey ( My Thoughts on Life and Living

Today's young adults endure so much. From trying to find their places in the world, to dealing with issues at home, and simply trying to survive middle or high school, it can be tough. More importantly, our youngsters are in need of products that will allow them to get things off of their chest in a healthy way.

Knowing that this was a issue that many teens and young adults have to deal with, Kaitlyn Kashman came up with a tool to help remedy this in her book titled, Words of a Journey. Providing statements that provoke thought,affirmations, poems and a ample amount of space for young adults and teens to write and express themselves, Kashman has created the ultimate teen and young adult 21st Century Self Help Guide. The middle school or high school aged student that had no idea on how to express or deal with a situation can now utilize Words of a Journey to think, process,and jot down their thoughts and concerns. Thank you teen author Kaithlyn Kashman for writing a book that contributes to the well being of teens and young adults today.

Inside Rain by Monique Mensah

Hooked on Mensah's first book Who is he to You, I assumed that Inside Rain would be a continuation of her first debut. Inside Rain pulls you into the lives of Lorrian, Danny, and Carmen. These siblings lost their mom to a tragic death at a very early age. Due to her unfortunate death,they carry excessive baggage which results to them living very dysfunctional lives.

Rain has panic attacks and has created this imaginary relationship with a man name Kyle that lives on the lower level of their apartment flat,Carmen has a drug addiction and sleeps around,and Danny is a self centered woman beater. Death is never easy to deal with but loosing their mom the way they did plays a huge role in why they carry out the way they do. Thank God for Gi-Gi. She is there only saving grace. She assures and protects Rain during her psychotic episodes, puts Carmen in her place as necessary, and checks Danny about beating on his girlfriend. Despite of all that she does,she cant cure Rain from the abrupt illusions she continues to see of her mother. Carmen and Danny never see these images and have proclaimed their baby sister as a crazy woman who will never have a normal life.

The story line gets better by the page. Carmen hooks up with Street Thug Jay-Jay and Danny ends up in a situation with an alternative group of thugs. From Jay-Jay forcing Carmen to make a very unethical decision, to Jay-Jay revealing a tragic secret to Rain, this book forces your eyes to read more only to discover the end which will leave you with your mouth wide open. Once again Mensah has raised the bar on the literary stanza's.

The Magic Pencil by Karen Dabney

The Magic Pencil may be a fictional read however, the points enclosed within this story line are so realistic. Malcom, a young African American male meets a dynamic little girl by the name of Nia. As class mates, they establish a true friendship which consist of them learning together, playing together, and attending special events together such as Ancestors' Night.

Malcom, a kid that just so happens to have both street and book smarts discovers that Nia may be too good to be true. Everyone she surrounds herself within the school makes a change for the better. Even the principal of the school has taken notice. There is something very amazing Nia's touch. Especially when it comes down to her touching the pencils that the students use to complete their assignments and daily school activities.

Aware of the old saying that you cant please everyone, some of the students begin to show jealously and hatred toward Nia for no apparent reason. Not allowing this to get in her way on her mission to continue to do good, towards the end of the story, Nia states very important message to the school. Spoken like a true hero, she encourages parents and teachers to become more involved in their children and students learning process, and administrators to do what they need to do to ensure that the students are successful within their learning environment.

Kudos to Ms Dabney for doing such a excellent job on this spectacular literary read.

The Cries of Vampira by Sean H. Robertson

I was once a skeptic when it came to reading books pertaining to vampires due to the obsession America has with the exotic species known as the "Undead." Completing Shawn Robertson The Cries of Vampira changed my train of thought. Exciting from the begining to the end, this literary read was so good that it was as if I was watching this book directly in front of a movie screen. The introduction is based upon King George, husband of queen Grace,and father of triplet vampiran children Kylie,Kolbe, and Kristin. King George and his arch rival Gaal Grey battle it out until death, and the story fast forwards.

Gaad Grey, the son of the late Werewolf King Gal Grey, is on a mission to avenge his fathers death and to create the ultimate mortal species. His handsome looks and womanizing tactics have overpowered the thoughts of Dove, a female traitor who resides in the Vamparian castle. Pretending to be on the side of Queen Grace and the Vamparian race, Dove reports everything that takes place in the castle back to Gaad.

Kylie, a hopeless optimistic, sneaks away by herself on a mission to sever the bad ties with Gaad Grey. Requesting a peace offering between the Werewolves,Human,and Vamparian race, Kylie ends up in a bad situation. Once the tragic news gets back to the Vampirian Castle, the queen sends her most skilled and trained vampire daughter Kristin to save her sister Kylie. Kolbe, the male of the three triplets was not sent due to severe immaturity

Kristin was forewarn by her mother Queen Grace in regards to being over confident about her fighting ability. Due to thinking her fighting skills were second to none, she made a serious mistake underestimating the power of Gaad's werewolves soldiers. Turns out for Kristin that the new breed of wolves were much stronger than the ones she had done battle with in the past. Fighting them off resulted to her becoming tired and weak.

Observing the aftermath of the torture her sister Kylie endured was one thing but suffering ear damage due to Gloom, head mistress and Werewolf Queen of Gaad loudly echoing to the point of blood pouring out of Princess Kristin ears was another. I just knew it would be the demise of Queen Grace's daughters. Princess Kristin is still alive but the question is for how long? What a great way to end a cliffhanger Mr Robertson. Looking forward to Volume II.

The Pocket Book Monologues

As I read this book I thought to myself, it addressed so many real life issues that African American women have dealt with for a long time. From skin complexions to child molestation, this book touches it all in regards to Black Women. Reading this book made me realize another unfortunate fact that has hit the gender of African American females like a thunder volt. That unfortunate fact just so happens to be HIV.

Although this virus does not discriminate when it comes to race, gender, or ethical background, the numbers of black women affected with this virus are at a very high rate. If I did not get anything else from this book, I definitely got the following:

*Sisters protect yourself at all cost.
*Remember the old saying "No Glove No Love."
*HIV does not discriminate because you are and attractive or educated woman.

I recommend this book for any woman contemplating on sharing their bodies without the usage of protection and if you are, pick up a copy of The Pocket Book Monologues and carry it with you just in case you think about slipping up. Thank you Ms McGhee for your literary contribution and your wake up call to black women everywhere.

Swag by Monica Marie Jones

Reading this book and currently residing in Detroit, I thought to myself, it would really be cool to see a reality show play out just the way it did in Jones "Swag." I believe that the main character Noelle represents all women at one or any giving phase of their life who simply do not see their value or worth. Sometimes, it takes a life changing moment or two for a person to finally wake up and see they are amazing just as Noelle did.

Not realizing that she deserved the best in life and every good thing this life has to offer, Noelle, enters a competition on a major reality show. Monroe, the creator of the show was astounded and simply amazed at her audition and as a result, she was selected as a contestant. Despite of Noelle, suffering from low self esteem and the on-going drama brought on by a six year relationship with her boyfriend Jonah, she has the personality and the welcoming spirit of a good hearted woman from the South. There is however another contestant by the name of Taylor who's personality is just the opposite of Noelle's. Cutthroat, and very scandalous, there's nothing this woman will not do to win.

Speaking of scandalous, certain characters from Jone's book "Floss", make a grand appearance in this novel as well. Ms Dionysus is back. For those of you who are aware of her, she put the "S" on scandalous and "H" on Hoe back in the day when she was in the process of finding herself. I was proud to read that Di has made some changes for the better in her life. In fact, she becomes the one real true friend that Noelle ends up relying on as she goes on this journey as a singing contestant trying to win more than just a contest. Noelle is also on a conquest to win first place at simply loving herself. I was very happy for Noelle at the end of this story line because she made some decisions based upon what would make her happy and her life one awesome experience.

Adra Young
Author of: The Everyday Living of Children & Teens Monologues

Crack Volume 1 by Shaka Senghor

Appearing in the city of Detroit that individuals who take a stand for the good are simply living in a dream world, Detective Jensen is an honest cop who takes his job very seriously. Representing the citizens residing within the city limits, he is very opposed to the crooked activities that take place within the inner city. Jensen along with Dr Brooks work as a team to solve the multiple murder crimes and cases that are drug related.

Drug Lord Damu, the leader and head of his family's narcotic ring, is a no nonsense gangster that never thinks twice about taking his street competition out. Despite the fact that Jensen and Damu grew up together in the same neighborhood he does not let this deter him from cracking the case which involves him finding out who killed Terrance while at the same time made the strong attempt to kill him as well. Not every criminal minded villain starts out that way. I found it pretty interesting that Damu actually served in the military.

Not every criminal remains a criminal either. The story of how Santiago makes a serious transformation in his life brings about a very interesting scenario within this plot. I recommend that this book be utilized in all Second Chance schools for today's young adults. Perhaps after reading this book,they would possibly think twice about becoming drug dealers. Kudos to author Shaka for writing one heck of a novel.

Adra Young
Author of: The Everyday Living of Children & Teens Monologue Series

I really miss my dad by Demetris Martin

Being a educator for over 15 years, I know the signs of a child experiencing grief. For a teacher, one of the saddest things in the world is to see one of your students shut down completely due to loosing a love one. There are many things that can be done to assist a youngster with the healing process in regards to dealing with death. This book, I Really Miss My Dad, is one of those tools that can help with the process.

The author of this book,Demetrius A Martin,recently lost his father to a tragic death. Instead of giving up hope, he not only wrote this book to address his feelings and emotions, he wrote it for other children so that they would have a guide to assist them with as well. My favorite suggestion for dealing with the death of a love one is located on page 15 and it states the following, "Don't allow the memories to make you fail in school." This book is filled with many other great suggestions.

I am recommending that counseling departments nationally utilize this book, I Really Miss My Dad, as one of their supplemental therapeutic components to assist children everywhere on how to correctly deal with death. A job well done Demetrius Martin.

Adra Young
Author of: The Everyday Living of Children & Teens Monologues Series

The Misfits coming in the Fall of 2011