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Showing posts from October, 2009

The Cradle

Interesting little muse and character study coupled with a little mystery and chase around the Midwest. The Cradle , a first novel by Patric Somerville, was a satisfying little morsel during a really rainy St. Louis week. The book has several little vignettes centered around a Civil War cradle that the protagonist's wife is sure will make everything complete. The completeness comes not in wood but in what life crafted for them in the end. I read this almost in one sitting, drawn in by his use of multiple stories that interconnected. It subtly reminded me that we truly are only six degrees separated from other people. One does not experience their story without the paragraphs of this life touching the sentences of another's life. Matt, in the end, did not bring home what sent him driving through rain and snow and meeting weird characters that populate any family. He ended up with something more and yet, I closed the book longing to know what happened to the other people

Thoughts From A True Bookie

I normally use this space to review books and will probably throw in thoughts on a few books I've read recently. Today, however, there is something on my mind about the whole Wal*Mart, Target, Amazon online price wars along with the whole Kindle, Nook, Alex e-reader electronic war. All the noise in the marketplace is really making me mad about the thing I love a lot - books, words, bookstores. Now, I've talked in my blog, The Musings of a Latte Queen , before about my favorite bookseller, Pudd N'Head Books . Nikki recently celebrated the first birthday of the store. This is not an easy feat for any entrepreneur but even less easy for independent booksellers in this crowded and noisy landscape. As an ex-marketing person, I completely understand the psychological war that the big guns are waging for the attention of fleeting readers. Most real book lovers do not look to the bestsellers list or chain stores for their literary fix. I certainly do not choose Wal*Mart fi

"God Forms Our Blue Songs"

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She rests with me, at times she is me. I am speaking of Abebe in the classic book, Let The Lion Eat Straw. This wonderful treasure, celebrating its 30th anniversary, is by Professor Ebele Oseye . I think she came to my life at just the right time, to let me know, that tomorrow is still full of time. Abebe lived the life of many black women of her time, and also of our time. Too often, the needs and wants of others can overshadow the needs and dreams of ones soul. Such is the life of Abebe. She was blissfully happy in sandy,North Carolina eating boiled peanuts catching the old soul of her grandmother, not her grandmother. Her mother, up in the cold and rat infested north was hunting down a different life. Five years go by before the mother, Angela comes to get the little girl and her life with the midwife. She whisks her away to trains and dark streets, noise and indoor toilets, and her New York Daddy. Arthur Lavoisier turned out to be the sunshine to radiate hope and pr

Soothing Sisterhoods

Some things just go down sweetly like the golden yummy of Black Madonna's honey. Such has been my recent morsel of fiction, The Wednesday Sisters . I really enjoyed the ensemble characters and frankly, did not expect to like it as much as I did. The story and the women have settled in my heart, much like the ensemble characters from Sue Monk Kidd's The Secret Life of Bees . The setting of both books was during the tumultuous times of the 1960s. One was early in the decade and in the south, the other was later in the decade as its moonlight faded to the sunrise of the 1970s and in the far west. Each was set against the backdrop of history being made that ultimately shaped the women and in many ways, shaped my world today. Who would have known that the challenges women faced then could transcend their race? I never expected this, I entered the reading of The Wednesday Sisters as a prep for reading The Help later this fall. I am like many black women in their mid-fortie