#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 17 Must Read Mystery

I had to choose Walter Mosley’s Easy Rawlins series. It starts in 1948 Los Angeles. Easy Rawlins is the main character. He’s a nice fair man with good intentions. He’s also very seductive too. Even though, he can sometimes get himself in quite a lot of mess. You’ll be routing for Easy right from the beginning and until the end. Another important part of these books is the way Mosley writes about race relations between whites and black. This adds to the realism of the books. The setting always gives a particular unsettling feeling, with a mystery to crack. When the story gets really good, Mouse appears. Mouse is Easy’s crazy good friend. I’ve read the first 2 of this series – Devil in a Blue Dress and A Red Death. They were both excellent! I can’t wait to get to White Butterfly next! Have you got any mystery books or series to recommend? Drop them below.

The books in the picture above are the Washington Square Press Series edition.

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 16Anticipated New Release(s)

Like who doesn’t want to read any of these four?  Awesome! I’m expecting loads from all four of them. I hope not to be disappointed. These should all give me lots of food for thought. Which new releases are you anticipating?

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#ReadSoulLit Day 15 Fave Memoir(s)

I read these 2 memoirs amazing memoirs last year.  They both touched me in different ways and I don’t think I’ll be able to forget them any time soon.  You all know how I feel about Hunger A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay – powerful, poignant, unflinchingly honest, and full of teachable moments for everyone, and so is The Mother of Black Hollywood , which is a testament to what it takes to face bipolarism, sex addiction, and maintain and be a successful actress.  That memoir depicted the strength and determination of Jenifer Lewis who is equally brilliant, talented, funny, and so real in the way she talks about all that she’s been through.  This book had so many ups and downs, I really didn’t know what was going to happen next.  It’s great to see where she gets all her talent.  All you have to do is follow her over on her Instagram page and you get why she’s so lovable and how talented she is.  I could have also added to these two memoirs, Born a Crime because it was just as edifying.  Trevor Noah growing up in apartheid South Africa as a mixed-race boy raised by a strong-willed, black mother definitely was not easy; however that mother/son relationship was everything to read about.  It was inspiring!  Last year has given me a new look into reading memoirs and I don’t want to lose that great feeling I caught. So, I’m going to be reading more memoirs this year. Can you guess which ones? Let know below.  Check out the videos below which will show you how Fantastic both these women are! Enjoy!

Hunger – Roxane Gay, hardcover, 304 pages (Harper Collins)

The Mother Of Black Hollywood – Jenifer Lewis, hardcover, 306 pages (Amistad)

 

#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 14 Favorite Couple

Firstly, Some Sing, Some Cry is one of the best historical fiction/family sagas I’ve read in a long time. It was written by 2 sisters Ntozake Shange and Ifa Bayeza. It’s the perfect combination of family, history, music, struggle, and love. There are quite a few memorable characters in this book but the couple that moved me the most was Lizzie and Osceola. Now if you’ve read this novel you’ll know why. They gave me the feels.💖 You should definitely pick this one up if you haven’t read it and don’t get discouraged by its size. The story reads beautifully.

Some Sing, Some Cry – Ntozake Shange and Ifa Bayeza, hardcover, 560 pages (St. Martins Press)

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 13 “Food” for Thought

Had to go with this amazing book, 100 Amazing Facts About the Negro.  I’ve started reading since Saturday. 100 Amazing Facts About The Negro is the newly published (2017) nonfiction by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., which is based on the first edition from 1957 by Joel Augustus Rogers entitled « A Negro Believe It Or Not ». This book goes African diaspora and African-American History. You’ll find out Did Lincoln really free the slaves? Who were Africa’s first Ambassadors to Europe? or Why did free black people living in the South before the end of the Civil War stay there?

100 Amazing Facts About the Negro by Henry Louis Gates Jr. – hardcover, 496 pages (Pantheon Books)

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 12 “If you like that, you’ll like this.”

    

The Warmth of Other Suns is my favorite non-fiction for many reasons. It reads like fiction and I learned a lot while reading it. If you haven’t picked it up, you need to. It’s extraordinary! If you like this, you’ll love The Essential Gwendolyn Brooks. This little gem covers her earliest poetry from World War II through the turbulent 1960s until her death in 2000. These poems talk about life in the African-American community – racism, survival, slums, etc. Beautifully lyrical poems that no lover of poetry should miss out on. This poetry collection is a natural extension of The Warmth of Other Suns.

The Warmth of Other Suns – Isabel Wilkerson, paperback, 620 pages (Vintage Books)

The Essential Gwendolyn Brooks – Edited by Elizabeth Alexander, hardcover, 142 pages (Literary Classics of the United States, Inc.)

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 10 Book Spine Poetry

Buffalo Dance The Journey of York – Frank X Walker

Some Love, Some Pain, Sometime J. California Cooper

He Never Came HomeRegina R. Robertson

Lost in the CityEdward P. Jones

Drinking Coffee ElsewhereZZ Packer

Nowhere is a PlaceBernice L. McFadden

A Kind of FreedomMargaret Wilkerson Sexton

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 9 Want to Reread

There are so many novels that I’d like to reread but the one that comes to mind from an African-American author is Native Son.  I first read Native Son in college for a third year literary course.  I was blown away by the precision in Richard Wright’s writing style.  You will literally go through all emotions while reading this tragic and infuriating novel, which show cases Bigger Thomas one of the most intriguing main characters in an American modern classic.  Native son has to be one of the greatest American classics and should be read by all.  Have you read it?  Were you blown away by it?

Set in Chicago in the 1930s, Wright’s powerful novel is an unsparing reflection on the poverty and feelings of hopelessness experienced by people in inner cities across the country and of what it means to be black in America.” (Native Son, description from Goodreads)

Native Son – Richard Wright, paperback, 454 pages (Vintage Classics)

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 8 – Short Story Collection

The late great writer and poet, Henry Dumas, has been on my TBR for ages. However I didn’t have any of his books until last year when I purchased this short story collection from Coffee House Press. Note that his work isn’t easy to find these days.  His writing has been deemed brilliant and influential. Through his work he developed themes of the Black Aesthetic Movement which was eminent in the 1960s and early 1970s. He was also influenced by Moms Mabley, gospel, jazz, blues, and spirituals. Sadly Dumas was shot to death in 1968 by a New York City Transit Police officer, while waiting on a subway platform. It is believed that his death was a case of mistaken identity, although there is no proof of that. I can’t wait to get into this one!  Here is his brief and exceptional bibliography:

Poetry for My People (1970) (poetry)

Ark of Bones and Other Stories (1974) (short stories)

Play Ebony, Play Ivory (1974) (poetry)

Jonah and the Green Stone (1976) (novel)

Rope of Wind and Other Stories (1979) (short stories)

Goodbye, Sweetwater: New and Selected Stories (1988) (short stories)

Knees of a Natural Man: The Selected Poetry of Henry Dumas (1989) (poetry)

Echo Tree: The Collected Short Fiction of Henry Dumas (Coffee House Press, 2003) (short stories)

Quote: (Themes in this quote = slavery, freedom, capitalism, greed, america…)

“If an eagle be imprisoned
on the back of a coin,
and the coin tossed
into the sky,
the coin will spin,
the coin will flutter,
but the eagle will never fly.”
Henry Dumas

 

Echo Tree The Collected Short Fiction of Henry Dumas – Henry Dumas, paperback, 381 pages (Coffee House Press)

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#ReadSoulLit Photo Challenge Day 7 – Fave Secondary Character

Mawu was the character that broke the sanity of the beginning if this novel. Slave women that accompany their masters on a retreat to Tawawa House. The seediness of this novel made me so mad, but the arrival of Mawu made the other slave women think of freedom for the first time.  She was strong and fearless. This story saddened me but I enjoyed the texture that Mawu added to the dynamic of the story.  It is definitely a must read for the uniqueness of the story.  You can click Wench to see my review.  Have you read this one? What did you think?

“Tawawa House in many respects is like any other American resort before the Civil War. Situated in Ohio, this idyllic retreat is particularly nice in the summer when the Southern humidity is too much to bear. The main building, with its luxurious finishes, is loftier than the white cottages that flank it, but then again, the smaller structures are better positioned to catch any breeze that may come off the pond. And they provide more privacy, which best suits the needs of the Southern white men who vacation there every summer with their black, enslaved mistresses. It’s their open secret.

Lizzie, Reenie, and Sweet are regulars at Tawawa House. They have become friends over the years as they reunite and share developments in their own lives and on their respective plantations. They don’t bother too much with questions of freedom, though the resort is situated in free territory–but when truth-telling Mawu comes to the resort and starts talking of running away, things change.” (Goodreads description, Wench)

Wench – Dolen Perkins-Valdez, paperback, 290 pages (Amistad)

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