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July, 2017

An outrageous and spicy tale about a woman’s sin

Books: Nothing’s set in stone. Few things are. Lucky for you, there’s usually a chance to change your mind or have a do-over. You can often get another go at something because few things are that firmly decided. As in the new book “Sin of a Woman” by Kimberla Lawson Roby, you can sometimes have a second chance. Comment

In focus: New book chronicles 100 years of filming in Jamaica

Books: A new book documenting the international movie industry filming in Jamaica was released earlier this month and hopes to share the history of Jamaica as a destination for filming. In the book, “Jamaica, the Land of Film,” author Peter Polack chronicles all of the mainstream films from the early 1900’s to present, that used the island nation’s setting as the go-to place to shoot a movie in the Caribbean. Comment

A great summer escape with ‘The Boss’

Books: Somebody needs to call the shots. Leading by committee may seem equal, right? Everybody should have a voice, but there has to be a head honcho in the mix somewhere. Somebody has to make decisions and stand up, to lead with a big heart, a cool head, an open mind and, in “The Boss” by Aya de León, a solid backbone. Comment

Goal guide: Author pens motivating self-help book

Books: It’s time for some action! Long Island-based motivational speaker and author Nikkie Pryce is releasing her first book to help millennials jump start their dreams. In her self-help book titled “Dreamers, Take Action,” to be released on July 24, she lays out a guideline for the perpetual dreamer to embark on their goals and aspirations, because she too was once a procrastinator with many plans before setting forth on her ambitions. Comment

Jabari takes the plunge with dad’s backing

Books: You can do it. Yes, you can. You just need to take a deep breath and then blow it out. Find the courage inside yourself. Think of something else and do it. Don’t be scared. As you’ll see in “Jabari Jumps” by Gaia Cornwall , good things come to those who get brave and take the leap. Comment

June, 2017

Dash for freedom on Confederate ship

Books: It was a Sure Thing. A can’t-miss, a safe bet that you couldn’t possibly fail – or could you? Isn’t there always a danger of losing in a gamble, or at least not winning? What kind of odds would make you take a risky bet? As in the new book “Be Free or Die” by Cate Lineberry, would you put your family’s lives on the line? Comment

Kevin Hart’s life ‘lessons’ and laughter

Books: You can pretend all you want. Hide your head in the sand and say it ain’t so. Cover your ears and yell “LaLaLaLaLa” until everyone thinks you’re five years old. You can deny, deny, deny, but listen up: some things are factual, so read “I Can’t Make This Up: Life Lessons” by Kevin Hart, and you may learn something. Comment

Former JA consul receives Literary Award for telling immigrant’s tales

Books: Dr. Basil K. Bryan, a former New York consul general from Jamaica has retired from official diplomatic duties but he has not given up on diplomacy. Recently lauded and rewarded in his homeland, he was presented with the coveted Musgrave Award for literature by the Institute of Jamaica for penning a book about immigrants who migrated to Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States. Comments (1)

A look at both sides of the streets

Books: You’ve changed your mind. That’s allowed, you know. You can go in a different direction, pick something else, try another thing, have do-overs, or have two. Pencils come with erasers, few things are forever, and in “Once a Cop” by Cory Pegues, change may be good. Comment

May, 2017

Surviving childhood in the neighborhood

Books: Everything has a price. You say you’ll never sell your granddad’s watch, your dream car, or that collectible you coveted because it’s priceless — until it’s not, because everything is for sale. But in “The Cook-Up” by D. Watkins, it may cost your entire life. Comment

Your feet just got to dance with Rick James’ tale

Books: Your feet sometimes have a mind of their own. You see your favorite foods, and they carry you toward lunch before you even realize you’re hungry. When you’re faced with danger, they take you in the right direction, away and safe. And when you read “Super Freak: The Life of Rick James” by Peter Benjaminson, your feet just gotta dance. Comment

Comedian Bell shares his ‘awkward thoughts’

Books: You are a very different kind of person. You like things that others don’t like, you’re good at something that nobody else can do, and you laugh at the craziest jokes. You’re different — and that’s okay. If we were all the same, as you’ll see in “The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell” by W. Kamau Bell, life would be awfully boring. Comment

April, 2017

‘Finding Gideon’ is an irresistable page-turner

Books: “Finding Gideon” by Eric Jerome Dickey Comment

Singing praises on Sunday morning

Books: Each Sunday, your family has a routine they follow. Everyone gets up early to the smells of a good breakfast that Mama makes; she serves all your favorites before you go to church to raise your voice and praise God. Comment

March, 2017

Ten tales being told around the tables

Books: So, have you heard the one about…? Of course you have. You’re all over social media. You know what’s going on; sometimes it feels like you’ve heard it all, and maybe you have. Now in “Flying Lessons & Other Stories,” edited by Ellen Oh, you’ll hear it from a different side. Comment

Marie Vieux-Chauvet’s ‘Dance on the Volcano’

Books: At the Cultural Services of the French Embassy on upper Fifth Avenue, Haitian author and McArthur genius award recipient Edwidge Danticat spoke with Barnard professor Kaiama L. Glover about “Dance on The Volcano.” Written by Haitian author Marie Vieux-Chauvet, this is Glover’s most recent French-English translation and was published by Brooklyn’s Archipelago Books. Comment

Remarkable presidency of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Books: Your friends follow what you have to say. Whether on social media or otherwise, they listen to you and understand, ask your opinion, seek your wisdom, and look to your lead. With them, you live a good life. Have followers like those, as you’ll see in “Madame President” by Helene Cooper, and you can change the world. Comment

Historical spy thriller for young readers

Books: You’ve seen a lot of things you weren’t supposed to see. Comment

February, 2017

African American soldiers on the ‘Ghost Front’

Books: You are on a need-to-know basis. You’re told only what’s relevant, and nothing more. Rumors, innuendo, extra little details, none of that’s important; only what you need is what you get. But read “The Lost Eleven” by Denise George and Robert Child, and you may wonder what else you’re missing. Comment

St. Vincent PM publishes essays on ‘Our Caribbean and Global Insecurity’

Books: St. Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister Dr. Ralph E. Gonsalves, perhaps, did not realize – or had a premonition, or envisaged – that global kinetics would change rapidly under a new United States administration, led by President Donald Trump. Comment

Presidential house slave runs for her freedom

Books: Run, run, run. Some days, it feels like that’s all you do. Run the kids to school, dash to work, rush with errands, and run yourself ragged before bed. You’re always on the go, always moving, and in the new book “Never Caught” by Erica Armstrong Dunbar, your breath isn’t the only thing to catch. Comment

Author explores Haiti and blackness through poetry

Books: In a newly released book, Connecticut-based author and anthropology professor Gina Athena Ulysse, candidly discusses her evolving world views, as a feminist, as a Haitian, and as a black woman. “Because When God is Busy: Haiti, Me, and the World,” follows a series of poems and writings that she wrote about to Haiti and it’s culture, which she will discuss at Hemispheric Institute of Performance & Politics in Manhattan on Feb. 23. Comment

Geting to the root of racism with education

Books: I know what you’re thinking. You’ve said that before, to a furrowed brow, a mischievous smile, a child who’s about to do something sneaky. You can see it in the eyes, the body language, the tone of voice, and you know just what they’re thinking. But until you’ve read “Tears We Cannot Stop” by Michael Eric Dyson, you might not really have a clue. Comment

Guyanese author writes about murder in the UN

Books: Derrick John Jeffrey’s passion, and organic way of writing, is the reason for his successful careers as storyteller, playwright, and author that began in his homeland of Guyana back in the 70s. Comment

January, 2017

Twist and turns in Emmett Till’s death

Books: You really can’t remember. For sure, something important happened years ago, something you should recall very easily, but time’s made things fuzzy. Have you forgotten or, worse yet, have you just remembered everything wrong? Usually, you suppose, it wouldn’t matter but in the new book “The Blood of Emmett Till” by Timothy B. Tyson, it surely does. Comment

Chase may keep a man out of prison

Books: Catch me if you can. You might have said that once, giggling. You may have yelled it at a game one afternoon. You said it, maybe, in a flirtatious manner on some romantic evening. Run, run, run, catch me if you can because, as in “Man on the Run” by Carl Weber, this chase may keep a man out of prison. Comment

A look behind Obama’s presidency

Books: If you can’t say something nice… Sometimes, it’s hard to say nothing at all. There are times when you need to speak out, to confront, share your opinion, rant, or vent. And then there are times, as in the new book “Audacity” by Jonathan Chait, where you must praise. Comment

Shedding your poundage and keeping it off

Books: Somebody passed you a plate of cookies. It was the holidays so, of course, you had to take one. Or three, because they were good; and when the fudge came around, you had that, too. And some pie, cheesecake, punch, homemade candy, now your pants are tight, you feel lazy, and your bathroom scale is screaming. Yep, it’s time to step back and step toward “Lose Your Final 15” by Rovenia M. Brock, PhD. Comment