Day 8: Book with a View
Head Off & Split is my Spotlight of the day. Yes! Yes! Wow this poetry collection by the talented Nikki Finney! This poetry collection is a moving read that takes you through African American culture and history. You’ll just want to keep rereading. As a matter of fact, I’m due for another reread myself. I’m no expert on poetry but I know what I love.😍 How about you? Name a few of your favorite poetry collections.
Day 9: Spine Poetry
American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin
Nowhere is a Place
The Last Thing You Surrender
A Small Place
Lost in the City
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Day 7 – Current Read
My current reads are keeping me glued to the pages. The Last Thing You Surrender by Leonard Pitts, Jr is the Read Soul Lit 2020 Read Along pick. It is captivating everybody. So glad to discover another interesting black American writer that I hadn’t read before. I’ll definitely be combing the rest of his backlist, starting with Freeman which I’ve heard a lot of good about. It’s not too late to join us in reading and discussing it on Goodreads It’s called ReadSoulLit Readalong 2020 – The Last Thing You Surrender. Those first fifty-five pages knocked me on my ass! The accuracy of his descriptions are downright accurate and undeniably moving. It’s as if the reader is there. It’s a 500-page novel that reads very quickly, so those that have difficulty reading long books you won’t have any trouble getting through this one. I’ve already started trying to cast the characters in my mind for a movie or a Netflix series. Who do you see playing Luther? How about Kofi Siriboe from Queen Sugar?
The second book I’ve just started is called Seeds of Deception by Arlene L. Walker. This book came across my Instagram timeline last year and its cover attracted me immediately. With it’s striking cover and storyline pitch I was sure this one would be for me. I’ve only just started but it’s promising first line has got me very curious. “If poverty was slavery, then wisdom was wealth.” (Seeds of Deception, p. 1). This book contains a family secret, Cherokee Indians and their former African slaves, and a protagonist called Spit Louie McClendon. Sounds like a winner to me. Will keep you posted on what I think about this one. Check out the video below of Leonard Pitts, Jr talking about race and The Last Thing You Surrender.
Day 8 – Delightful Dish & Book
Today’s book post was Tar Baby by the Queen Toni Morrison who I still can’t believe is gone. Tar Baby was one of the first few novels I read by Morrison and one that I remember sparked much conversation in my college course on black women writers. Tar Baby was our 2018 ReadSoulLit Readalong. And our live discussion was lit. We had so many ideas about the ending, discussing the characters, the setting, etc. For such a short book Tar Baby is dense with ideas and meaning. One of the best scenes in this novel is the dinner scene. Morrison really said a lot in that scene and it’s one I could read over and over. As for the food in the picture, it’s a simplistic meal, a bit of grilled chicken and some Swiss chard and mushrooms cooked in garlic and olive oil – a sain meal low in calories. I’m trying to eat healthier in 2020 and beyond…..
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Starting our second week already and I’ll be talking about another one of my favorite books that I rave about all the time and that’s Jam on the Vine. Jam on the Vine is LaShonda Katrice Barnett’s 2015 debut novel. This is another novel that literally flew right under the radar at its release. People I don’t understand why! This book has everything that could interest avid readers like us.
Walking in the footsteps of storytellers like Toni Morrison and Alice Walker, Barnett’s writing is rich and full of life. She isn’t just telling us a story; she’s bringing us along with her characters. This passionate story follows the lives of two African-American women journalists at the beginning of the twentieth century and of the existence of African-American newspapers. I was immediately wrapped up in the how and what of black American newspapers and its importance at this time period. Barnett doesn’t just woo us with a good story, she gives us information about this traumatic period in America of Jim Crow and depicts the importance and difficulty for blacks to be journalists and to print newspapers. Jam on the Vine made me want to read The Defender How the Legendary Black Newspaper Changed America by Ethan Michaeli. I haven’t read it yet but it’s definitely on my nonfiction must reads list, even though it’s a little over 500 pages. It will be a challenging read but one of necessity to know more about black American history.
I recommend this book to readers who appreciate excellent writing, a bit of sensuality, great food descriptions, historical fiction novels, interesting characters, and stories set in the beginning of the twentieth century.
“Ivoe Williams, the precocious daughter of a Muslim cook and a metalsmith from central-east Texas, first ignites her lifelong obsession with journalism when she steals a newspaper from her mother’s white employer. Living in the poor, segregated quarter of Little Tunis, Ivoe immerses herself in printed matter as an escape from her dour surroundings. She earns a scholarship to the prestigious Willetson College in Austin, only to return over-qualified to the menial labor offered by her hometown’s racially-biased employers.” (Jam on the Vine, inside flap)
Jam on the Vine – La Shonda Katrice Barnett
Publisher: Grove Press
My rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
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