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Posts Tagged ‘Books

Kid’s book on African-American heritage in Mass.

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JP CENTER—Rosalyn Elder, co-owner of Jamaicaway Books, an independent bookstore with a focus on multicultural children’s literature, has written a series of books that celebrate African American heritage of Massachusetts.

The first book in the series: “African American Heritage in Massachusetts: A Coloring Book,” will be launched at the store at 676 Centre St. on Sat., Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. The book was illustrated by local artist Laurence Pierce with graphic design by the youth art entrepreneurship group, Artists for Humanity.

Elder, a Jamaica Plain resident, said her goal is to “increase literacy in urban students by allowing them to read and be inspired by stories of heroism and determination relevant to their culture. The only way to raise the educational bar is to get students to read more. The only way to do that is to raise their self-esteem by inspiring them with books about their heritage.”

Read the article at Jamaica Plain Gazette

Written by Symphony

February 23, 2008 at 7:43 am

Tavis Smiley requests stories of unconditional love for next publication

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SmileyBooks, the publishing company founded by Tavis Smiley, has launched a national campaign to generate submissions for his next book Love Wins: True Stories of Transformation and Triumph. Smiley is the New York Times best-selling author of What I Know for Sure and The Covenant. “I believe, just as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did, that love is the most powerful and transformative force in the world; the only thing capable of turning an enemy into a friend,” Smiley asserts.

Smiley envisions Love Wins as a collection of inspiring real life stories that give voice to the transforming power of unconditional love. “Too often 21st century living has a way of disconnecting us from that divine power within,” says Smiley. “Love Wins is an expression of faith that we can reconnect with love’s power – to positively transform each other and the world we live in.” Love Wins invites people to reexamine their lives through the lens of love and share the one story that most compellingly reveals how giving or receiving love changed their life.

Read more at Black News

Written by Symphony

January 24, 2008 at 10:57 pm

Posted in Books

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African-American Read In spotlights La Joyce Brookshire

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The Wakulla County Christian Coalition, The Wakulla County Public Library and the Black History Month Festival (BHM) are hosting this year’s African-American Read-In Chain at the Wakulla Public Library from 3-5 pm. Sunday afternoon, February 3, 2008.

La Joyce Brookshire, nationally known author of “Faith Under Fire, Betrayed By Love” a  chronicle of the author’s dilemma of having married a man who had AIDS yet kept it hidden from her until no longer able to do so, will sign copies of her book and make a presentation. 

The Read-In Chain had its genesis in November 1989 when the Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) agreed to sponsor a nation-wide Read-In on the first Sunday of February.  The purpose was to make literacy a part of traditional Black History Month activities.  At the request of educators, it was hoped that  the African American Read-Ins would become a traditional part of Black History Month celebrations. 


Written by Symphony

January 24, 2008 at 8:26 pm

Coretta Scott King Book Awards handed out

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The Coretta Scott King Book Award for best African American young adult author went to Christopher Paul Curtis, who was born in Michigan but now lives in Windsor, Ont., for “Elijah of Buxton.” Ashley Bryan’s “Let It Shine” won the King award for illustration.

SOURCE: Canadian Press

Millionaire Ella M. Coney tells her story in new book

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In 1973 Ella Coney was facing eviction and jail time for welfare fraud now she’s a real estate millionaire. In her new book When You Fall Down – Get Up!, she shares secrets and tips to prosperity. Coney served time in the US Air Force but was discharged after having a “complete mental breakdown”.

You can order her book at Amazon

Read more at Black News

Written by Symphony

December 31, 2007 at 9:07 am

Cassandra Carter published author at 18

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Michigan native Cassandra Carter’s debut novel, “Fast Life,” was published in July as part of the “Tru” series from Kimani Press, a division of Harlequin that focuses on African-American young-adult fiction. Carter started the book when she was just 14, after having a dream.

She’s still taken a little aback by the book’s success. The online reviews at both Amazon and Barnes and Noble have been overwhelmingly positive, and the comments on her Myspace page are fairly bursting with praise.

“This is so surreal almost, sometimes, like going online to look myself up, and having people contact me telling me they like my art and my book,” she said.

She finished her second book, “16 Isn’t Always Sweet,” due for out in March, and is working on a sequel to “Fast Life.”

Read more about this motivated young woman at

Written by Symphony

December 28, 2007 at 8:54 pm

Black writers see success

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*Special thanks to Anika at for spreading positive Black achievement*

Alex Simmons has been tapped to write Archie & Friends comic books 117 through 120.
Mat Johnson, author of  Hunting in Harlem has been awarded a United States Artists Fellowship. 
ZZ Packer is the newest recipient of the prestigious Lurie Chair appointment at San Jose State University where she will teach an undergraduate literature course and a graduate workshop on fiction writing.

Written by Symphony

December 23, 2007 at 12:40 pm

Photographer captures beauty of African American women

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Jerry Taliaferro is the author of “Women of a New Tribe: A Photographic Celebration of the Black Woman” The preface says it all:

“African-American females have had a very difficult history: from slavery to racism to poverty. Although slavery has been abolished in this country, and we are working on eradicating racism and poverty, in the 21st Century, African-American females face one of the most difficult hurdles we have ever had to face: a severe lack of self-respect.

“We have allowed the media to make us believe that we must have straight hair, light skin, thin bodies and European features to be considered beautiful. This book is not only an opportunity to reaffirm to all black women that we are ‘fearfully and wonderfully made by God,’ but also an opportunity for everyone to see the emotions and beauty Jerry Taliaferro wrought through his camera lens.”-Cheryl A.M. Waymer, mother and model, as excerpted from the foreword of “Women of a New Tribe: A Photographic Celebration of the Black Woman.”

Why the book?  According to the West Point graduate and former military special forces officer, he was struck by the fact that, “Very little attention had been paid to the beauty of the black woman. The black woman was almost invisible.”

More words by Taliaferro:
These beautiful women have always been around us. They are our wives, mothers, sisters, daughters and friends. We can see the beauty in them if [we] just try. Perhaps in seeing their beauty, we will come to see what makes a woman truly beautiful… Just maybe we will come to understand that real beauty is more than that which can be seen. Real beauty is that which lifts us, real beauty touches our hearts.”

You can get the book online at Amazon here. Check your local bookstores as well.

Read more at: Frost Illustrated

Written by Symphony

December 18, 2007 at 12:54 pm

Terry McMillan To Be Honored With the Lifetime Achievement Award at the First- Ever 2008 ESSENCE Literary Awards

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NEW YORK, Dec. 13  /PRNewswire/ — ESSENCE magazine will celebrate established and emerging African-American authors at the first-annual 2008 ESSENCE Literary Awards on February 7, 2008 at Le Parker Meridien. A “who’s who” of publishing will convene at this invitation-only event, which will be hosted by Hoda Kotb, TODAY show co-anchor, and Dr. Ian Smith, creator of The 50 Million Pound Challenge. The ESSENCE Literary Awards will also kick-off ESSENCE’s Save Our Libraries campaign. In addition, readers can go to to vote for their favorite authors who have penned the best books of 2007 in the Storyteller of the Year category. The deadline to vote is December 15th and finalists will be announced on December 19th on

SOURCE: Earth Times

Written by Symphony

December 14, 2007 at 7:36 am

Posted in Arts, Honors

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