Tag: non-fiction

Maya Angelou, India.Arie Set for Oprah’s ‘Super Soul Sunday’

oprah dr angelouIn the first of a special two-part event, Oprah Winfrey sits down with her mentor, acclaimed writer, author and poet Dr. Maya Angelou, on her Emmy-winning series “Super Soul Sunday,” premiering Mother’s Day, May 12 from 11 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. ET/PT on OWN.

In this candid conversation, Oprah’s “mother-sister-friend” opens up about forgiveness, family, and the rich relationship they’ve shared for more than thirty-five years.

Discussing her latest book “Mom & Me & Mom,” Dr. Angelou delves into one of the deepest personal stories of her life: her relationship with her mother, Vivian Baxter. Dr. Angelou also reveals intimate stories from her childhood, including how her nurturing, yet fiery, mother challenged her to find strength in the face of adversity.

This season’s “Super Soul Sunday” line-up continues with all-new inspirational episodes airing every Sunday (from 11:00-12:00p.m.) on OWN, including:

May 19- “Oprah & Dr. Maya Angelou, Part Two”
Oprah’s heart-to -heart conversation continues with acclaimed author, Dr. Maya Angelou. Discussing her latest book, “Mom & Me & Mom”, Dr. Angelou reveals how her tough, but tender-hearted mother transformed her life. Plus, she shares her insights on aging brilliantly, and how love can liberate you.

May 26- “The Bigger Picture with Oprah, Rev Ed Bacon, Elizabeth Lesser & Mark Nepo”
Join Oprah and three dynamic thought leaders for the first installment of ‘The Bigger Picture,’ a Super Soul Sunday panel discussion about today’s top global headlines, bringing unique and thoughtful perspective to world news topics ranging from prescription drugs to terrorism, gun violence, and our fascination with celebrity culture.

June 2- “Oprah & Dr. Brian Weiss: Reincarnation, Past Lives and Miracles”
Groundbreaking psychiatrist and best-selling author of “Many Lives, Many Masters” tells Oprah of how he came to practice past life regression therapy.

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WWII’s African-American Paratroopers, the “Triple Nickles,” Lauded in New Book

Award-winning author Tanya Lee Stone is clear about why she’s written her new nonfiction book, “Courage Has No Color: The True Story of the Triple Nickles, America’s First Black Paratroopers” (Candlewick Press, $24.99).  “I want to help the Triple Nickles become as well-known as the Tuskegee Airmen,” Stone says.
The Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American pilots in the U.S. military, are now an integral part of the history of World War II. Far fewer people, however, have heard of the 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion — nicknamed the “Triple Nickles” — and the unit’s pioneering efforts to open up paratrooper jobs during World War II.
In her meticulously researched, well-written book, Stone tells the story of how the 555th was established in 1943 — a unit with black soldiers and black officers, the first-ever black U.S. paratroopers.

The unit’s nickname was a nod to the Buffalo Soldiers, as the African-American regiments in the U.S. Civil War and later were called. The “Triple Nickles” name also connects to the buffalo image that was stamped on American nickels for many years.

It took Stone 10 years, working off and on, to write “Courage Has No Color.” It was definitely worth the wait, as Stone movingly portrays the inspiring courage, determination and persistence displayed by African-American servicemen in the face of overwhelming racial prejudice in the U.S. military. It’s a story that Stone strongly believes should be much better known than it is.  “These men are almost not with us anymore,” Stone says, noting that many of the Triple Nickles are in their 90s.

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‘The Black Count’ Wins 2013 Pulitzer Prize For Biography; ‘Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America’ for General Nonfiction

 Alexandre Davy de la Pailleterie, aka Alexandre Dumas, aka “Black Devil” by some of the armies he fought against (let’s just say he was good at his job), aka The Black Count, is at the center of the recently published book from acclaimed author Tom Reiss. Its full title is The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo.  Dumas’ son, likely the most popular Dumas, also named Alexandre Dumas, was author of literary classics like The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers.  In fact, Dumas, the father of the author, was the inspiration for The Count Of Monte Cristo.

Other 2013 Pulitzer Prize Winners of note include Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America by Gilbert King, in the General Nonfiction category. Continue reading “‘The Black Count’ Wins 2013 Pulitzer Prize For Biography; ‘Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America’ for General Nonfiction”

Ballerina Misty Copeland Dances into Two-Book Deal

misty-copeland-hb

(Misty Copeland/Photo: Hello Beautiful) 

Ballet dancer Misty Copeland has a two-book deal.  Copeland, 30, is working on a memoir for Simon & Schuster‘s Touchstone imprint and picture book for G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, part of Penguin Group (USA). Copeland helped break ground as an African-American female soloist for the American Ballet Theatre. According to a release Wednesday by the two publishers, both of her books are scheduled for 2014.

In her memoir, Copeland is expected to describe the battles between her mother and her dance instructors while she was a teen over whether she should be allowed to pursue her career and who was her legal guardian.

article via blackamericaweb.com

Black Authors Thrive Through Business of Black Book Clubs

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Over the last 20 years, the channels for discovering new books, especially books by first-time and emerging authors, have shrunk or disappeared. Newspapers and magazines dedicate mere slivers of arts sections to book reviews — if at all. Those papers like the New York Times that do devote more space to book coverage rarely review debut authors. Likewise, bookstores prefer to invite already established, bestselling, or celebrity writers to do readings and signings. That leaves Oprah — and the Queen of Talk has endorsed only 72 books since she started her eponymous book club in 1996, including the two she has recommended since her 2.0 reboot.

It’s even more difficult for black authors — new and established — to get their books on readers’ radars. As it is, African-American interest books receive a mere fraction of the coverage noted above, and with the closing of more than 100 black-owned independent bookstores in the last 15 years, as well as the shuttering of Black Issues Book Review there are even fewer places for black authors’ work to gain visibility. MosaicAfrican Voices, and the new Spook can only review so much.  “The last [issue of] Essence covered the same book Oprah covered,” observed Troy Johnson, founder of the African-American Literature Book Club better known as AALBC.com.

In this landscape, black book clubs offer authors a valuable — albeit extremely competitive —promotion and sales channel. “[Book clubs] have advanced far beyond the small get-togethers in someone’s living room,” says Carol Mackey, editor-in-chief of direct-to-consumer book club Black Expressions.

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Essence Magazine Commemorates Michelle Obama’s Life in New Book

'A Tribute to Michelle Obama'

‘A Salute to Michelle Obama.’ (Image: Essence Magazine)
The editors at Essence magazine have been hard at work this fall on a new tome celebrating first lady Michelle Obama’s life and achievements. A Salute to Michelle Obamaavailable now in paperback, features an array of images of the first lady punctuated with essays penned by legendary black women. Yet, what makes it special are quotes from African-American female fans of Mrs. Obama interwoven through this compendium of her accomplishments.

“We reached out to women and asked, ‘What do you believe has been the impact of Michelle Obama?’” Patrik Henry Bass, Senior Editor at Essence, told theGrio. He was inundated with streams of enthusiastic praise in response from the Essence audience.  “I was surprised, in a delightful way,” he said of women’s reactions.

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Book Review: “The Stone Thrower” by Jael Ealey Richardson

The Stone Thrower
By Jael Ealey Richardson
Thomas Allen Publishers
256 pp; $24.95

The American football quarterback, Chuck Ealey led his University of Toledo Rockets to three undefeated seasons in college football, but he had misfortune to do so at a time when the National Football League looked askance at black quarterbacks. Because the NFL would not draft him, Ealey — like African-American quarterbacks Bernie Custis before him, and Warren Moon after — came to play for the Canadian Football League in 1972. It was Ealey’s best season: he led the Hamilton Tiger-Cats to a Grey Cup victory and was the game’s Most Valuable Player.

Ealey’s daughter, Jael Ealey Richardson, never got to see her father play football because she was born in 1980 — two years after her father sustained a lung injury and retired from the sport. In her memoir The Stone Thrower: A Daughter’s Lessons, a Father’s Life, Ealey Richardson could have taken the easy route by writing a praiseworthy tract meant to set her father up as a role model and hero. Ealey, the exquarterback, does come across as a devoted family man with a depth of vision and discipline that carried him far beyond the stadium lights. However, his daughter’s memoir is engaging because she situates his life in the context of the civil rights movement in the United States, and addresses issues of race in her own family as well as in homes, on the streets and in schools and campuses in the U.S. and Canada.

Ultimately, The Stone Thrower is as much a meditation on a daughter’s emerging sense of identity in Canada as it is a father-daughter memoir. The two threads are inextricably linked, one enriching the other.

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