Saturday, February 22, 2014


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Sunday, February 16, 2014

Book Review: "Silver Sparrow" by Tayari Jones

I'm not sure how I missed this book when it was first released.  It must have been one of those months when I didn't get around to reading my Essence magazine.  

Thank you, Amazon "Kindle Deal of the Day" for featuring this book a few weeks ago.  Now, I want to go back and read everything Ms. Jones has written.

Not to give anything away, but James Witherspoon is one man who can keep a secret.  At least from his wife.  Well, one wife, anyway.

I'm not spoiling anything by telling you that James Witherspoon is a bigamist.  In fact, the author reveals that detail at the very beginning.

What happens after is a tale told in fiction, but played out in real life, so many times.  

One thing we do really well is keep secrets.  We all have "family secrets" about cousins or uncles or aunts or even parents that we'll take to our graves.  But some things can only stay hidden for so long.  Because I really do believe there are "six degrees of separation."

And even though the book has its share of sadness and sorrow, there are plenty of laughs and lighter moments.

And if you're like I was and don't know who Tayari Jones is, now is the perfect time to find out.  

Visit her website for a look at all of her work and her upcoming appearances.

About "Silver Sparrow"

With the opening line of Silver Sparrow, “My father, James Witherspoon is a bigamist,” Tayari Jones unveils a breathtaking story about a man’s deception, a family’s complicity, and the teenage girls caught in the middle.
Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon’s families– the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode when secrets are revealed and illusions shattered. As Jones explores the backstories of her rich and flawed characters, she also reveals the joy, and the destruction, they brought to each other’s lives.
At the heart of it all are the two girls whose lives are at stake, and like the best writers, Jones portrays the fragility of her characers with raw authenticity as they seek love, demand attention, and try to imagine themselves as women.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

GET YOUR TICKETS TODAY: 16th Annual Madam C.J. Walker Business and Community Recognition Awards, Friday, March 14, 2014

The National Coalition of 100 Black Women Inc., Oakland Bay Area Chapter (NCBW/OBAC)will host its 16th Annual Madam C.J. Walker Business and Community Recognition Awards Fundraising Luncheon, on Friday, March 14, 2014 at the San Francisco Marriott Hotel, located at 55 Fourth Street. Guests will enjoy a VIP Reception, exhibits and book signing at 10:30 a.m. The luncheon and awards program follow promptly at 11:30 a.m. Tickets and corporate sponsorship information are available on the NCBW website:
We proudly honor the first African American female self-made millionaire and business leader, Madam C.J. Walker, with this annual luncheon. In remembrance of her hard work and entrepreneurial spirit, we will recognize four outstanding women who are making an impact in our community:

Madam C. J. Walker Corporate Award -- Kim Winston, Sr. Manager, Gov. Affairs, Starbucks

Madam C. J. Walker Entrepreneur Award -- Kimberly Bryant, Founder, Black Girls Code

Madam C. J. Walker Pioneer Award -- Alecia DeCoudreaux, President, Mills College

Madam C. J. Walker Advocacy Award -- Gloria Lockett, Executive Director, CAL-PEP

Keynote speaker is the Honorable Judge Glenda A. Hatchett, who upon acceptance of an appointment as Chief Presiding Judge of the Fulton County, Georgia Juvenile Court became Georgia’s first African-American Chief Presiding Judge of a state court and the department head of one of the largest juvenile court systems in the country.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Don't Hate Me Because I'm Beautiful - Black History Month 2014

It's February again.  Time to have "the talk."

While some will argue that we've come a long way from 1926 when Carter G. Woodson created "Negro History Week," a fraternity in Arizona still found it okay to host Martin Luther King events just last month, which were so offensive in nature, that I won't get into details.  

However, their "celebration" and continued misconceptions, falsehoods, stereotypes and biases (remember Barney's New York?) prove that we're still not where we should be in 2014.

I applaud corporations who still consider African Americans to be a part of the "diversity" category and  even host company-sponsored Black History Month events.  As long as they keep it classy.

And to those who stand around the water cooler and complain that there's no "White History Month," I say "Read your history.  Study the facts.  Take time to learn something you didn't know.  Enjoy the music, literature, dance.  Celebrate the contributions that Black Americans made to this country and the world.  They are many and varied."

Black History is rich, unique, welcoming and fun.

All you nay-sayers, sit back and enjoy the ride.  Lucky for you it's the shortest month of the year.

In the infamous words of the "Godfather of Soul," "Say it loud, I'm Black and I'm Proud!"