{New Releases} Week 47 (Nov 13-19)

The Mother of Black Hollywood by:Jenifer Lewis
Jenifer Lewis keeps it real in this provocative and touching memoir by a mid-western girl with a dream whose journey from poverty to Hollywood will move, shock, and inspire readers.

Told in the audacious voice her fans adore, Jenifer describes a road to fame made treacherous by dysfunction and undiagnosed mental illness, including a sex addiction. Yet, supported by loving friends and strengthened by “inner soldiers,” Jenifer never stopped entertaining and creating.

We watch as Jenifer develops icon status stemming from a series of legendary screen roles as the sassy, yet loveable, mama or auntie. And we watch as her emotional disturbances, culminating in a breakdown while filming The Temptations movie, launch her on a continuing search for answers, love and healing.

Written with no-holds-barred honesty and illustrated with sixteen-pages of color photos, this gripping memoir is filled with insights gained through a unique life that offers a universal message: “Love yourself so that love will not be a stranger when it comes.”

Candid, warm and wonderfully inspiring, The Mother of Black Hollywood intimately reveals the heart of a woman who lives life to the fullest.

From her first taste of applause at five years old to landing on Broadway within 11 days of graduation and ultimately achieving success in movies, television and global concert halls, Jenifer reveals her outrageous life story with lots of humor, a few regrets and most importantly, unbridled joy.
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Hardcover)

Blessed Life: My Surprising Journey of Joy, Tears, and Tales from Harlem to Hollywood by:Kim Fields
From “Facts of Life” to “Living Single” to “Dancing with the Stars” to wife and mom, here’s the BLESSED LIFE of Kim Fields, veteran actress, TV personality, and star.

Kim Fields has lived most of her life with people thinking they know her, which is understandable. From her first job on a Mrs. Butterworth syrup commercial at age 7, she has spent 40 years in the public eye. There were 9 years as Dorothy “Tootie” Ramsey on the classic sitcom The Facts of Life, 5 more in her 20s starring as Regine Hunter on the seminal coming-of-age show Living Single, and most recently appearing as herself on Real Housewives of Atlanta and Dancing with the Stars.

Behind the camera, she has directed episodes of Kenan & Kel, Tyler Perry’s Meet the Browns and House of Payne, and BET’s Let’s Stay Together. Between gigs, the pop culture icon’s life has included theater, spoken word, music, speaking engagements, and simply being present to the point that she cannot go a day without someone stopping her to say, “When I was a kid, I wanted to be Tootie” or “You were my role model.”

Flattered and blessed, after four decades in the business, Kim finally understands the role she has played onscreen and off as a successful, outspoken African-American woman. However, for as much as she’s been in the public eye, people have really never known her the way they think they have, and that’s because she, herself, spent most of her life figuring herself out. Now, at age 48, she is ready to set the record straight. She says, “It’s not that I’ve been misunderstood. It’s that I finally feel like I understand me enough to tell the life story that I’ve been asked to write for years.” It will be a chronicle of living, learning, and keen moments of self-discovery as she’s journeyed through the many facets and chapters of life. Fields found faith at age 14 and has found God to be right there every step of the way since then.
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle)(Hardcover)(Audio CD)

Wild Beauty by: Ntozake Shange
From the poet, novelist, and cultural icon behind the award-winning and celebrated Broadway play, for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf, comes an evocative and moving bilingual collection of new and beloved poems.

In this stirring collection of more than sixty original and selected poems in both English and Spanish, Ntozake Shange shares her utterly unique, unapologetic, and deeply emotional writing that has made her one of the most iconic literary figures of our time.

With a clear, raw, and affecting voice, Shange draws from her experience as a feminist black woman in American to craft groundbreaking poetry about pain, beauty, and color. In the bestselling tradition of Rupi Kaur’s Milk and Honey, Wild Beauty is more than a poetry collection; it is an exquisite call to action for a new generation of women, people of color, feminists, and activists to follow in the author’s footsteps in the pursuit of equality and understanding. As The New York Times raves, “Ntozake Shange writes with such exquisite care and beauty that anyone can relate to her message.”
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Hardcover)

Passion Island by:Cairo
From one of erotica’s hottest authors comes another page-melting novel where lies, infidelities, and unfettered desires beckon you to the edge of your seats, leaving you breathless until the last steamy page.

There’s always a price to pay for passion…

Lies, infidelities, and loads of drama are what three couples—Brenda and Roselle Woods; LaQuandra and Isaiah Lewis; and Krista and Kendall Evans—are holding on to. Each partner is harboring their own sets of resentments and secrets that could destroy the very relationships they’ve professed to want. But each couple’s truths will either bring them closer together, or push them further apart….

Thousands of miles away from home, each couple will embark on a journey like no other. Surrounded by lush tropics, miles of sandy white beach, and emerald-blue waters lies a luxurious couples’ retreat tucked in the middle of the Pacific Ocean known as Passion Island. A privately owned, secluded paradise where couples struggling with emotional and physical intimacy are invited to spend six weeks working toward rekindling the passion in their troubled relationships, rediscovering the true meaning of love, or finally letting go.

And, with the help of renowned sexologist Dr. Gretchen Dangerfield, each couple is pushed beyond their wildest imaginations. Sexual boundaries are challenged. Rules are broken. Truths are confronted. Commitments are questioned. Insecurities are exposed. Relationships are tested. And jealousies arise as each couple is forced to face their obsessions and their deepest, darkest desires. Featuring Cairo’s signature “style that is so raw and graphic” (Allison Hobbs), Passion Island is a gripping and hot exploration of love, sex, and relationships.
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Paperback)

Prince and the Purple Rain Era Studio Sessions: 1983 and 1984 by:Duane Tudahl and Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson
Featuring groundbreaking, never-before-heard stories, Duane Tudahl pulls back the paisley curtain to reveal the untold story of Prince’s rise from cult favorite to the biggest rock star on the planet.

His journey is meticulously documented through detailed accounts of his time secluded behind the doors of the recording studio as well as his days on tour.

With unprecedented access to the musicians, singers, and studio engineers who knew Prince best, including members of the Revolution and the Time, Duane Tudahl weaves an intimate saga of an eccentric genius and the people and events who helped shape the groundbreaking music he created. From Sunset Sound Studios’ daily recording logs and the Warner Bros. vault of information, Tudahl uncovers hidden truths about the origins of songs such as “Purple Rain,” “When Doves Cry,” and “Raspberry Beret” and also reveals never-before-published details about Prince’s unreleased outtakes.

This definitive chronicle of Prince’s creative brilliance during 1983 and 1984 provides a new experience of the Purple Rain album as an integral part of Prince’s life and the lives of those closest to him.
Release: 11/15/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle)(Hardcover)(Audio CD)

Dizzy, Duke, Brother Ray, and Friends: On and Off the Record with Jazz Greats by:Lillian Terry
Lilian Terry has lived music. As a performer, she has shared the stage with Ella Fitzgerald and Nina Simone. She cofounded the European Jazz Federation and pioneered jazz education in Italy. Her work as a director-producer of radio and television programs have spread the music by introducing countless people to its legendary performers. Drawing on Terry’s long friendships and professional associations, Dizzy, Duke, Brother Ray, and Friends offers readers a rare opportunity to hear intimate conversations with some of the world’s greatest musical figures. Dizzy Gillespie offers his thoughts on playing with œsanctified  rhythm and the all-important personal touch in performance. Duke Ellington discourses on jazz history and concludes an interview to sing a self-written ditty in Italian. Ray Charles gives candid thoughts on race and politics while taking charge of Terry’s tape recorder. Abbey Lincoln, Max Roach, Horace Silver, Bill Evans ”all provide Terry and her readers with unforgettable encounters. The result is a collection of profiles, some stretching over a decade or more, that reveal these performers in ways that illuminates their humanity and expands our appreciation of their art.
Release: 11/15/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Paperback)

Medical Bondage: Race, Gender, and the Origins of American Gynecology by:Deirdre Cooper Owens
The accomplishments of pioneering doctors such as John Peter Mettauer, James Marion Sims, and Nathan Bozeman are well documented. It is also no secret that these nineteenth-century gynecologists performed experimental caesarean sections, ovariotomies, and obstetric fistulae repairs primarily on poor and powerless women. Medical Bondage breaks new ground by exploring how and why physicians denied these women their full humanity yet valued them as “medical superbodies” highly suited for medical experimentation.

In Medical Bondage, Cooper Owens examines a wide range of scientific literature and less formal communications in which gynecologists created and disseminated medical fictions about their patients, such as their belief that black enslaved women could withstand pain better than white “ladies.” Even as they were advancing medicine, these doctors were legitimizing, for decades to come, groundless theories related to whiteness and blackness, men and women, and the inferiority of other races or nationalities.

Medical Bondage moves between southern plantations and northern urban centers to reveal how nineteenth-century American ideas about race, health, and status influenced doctor-patient relationships in sites of healing like slave cabins, medical colleges, and hospitals. It also retells the story of black enslaved women and of Irish immigrant women from the perspective of these exploited groups and thus restores for us a picture of their lives.
Release: 11/15/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Hardcover)

Higher Is Waiting by: Tyler Perry
An intimate book of inspiration by the one and only Tyler Perry—actor, producer, director, philanthropist, and the creator of Madea

Higher Is Waiting is a spiritual guidebook, a collection of teachings culled from the experiences of a lifetime, meant to inspire readers to climb higher in their own lives and pull themselves up to a better, more fulfilling place. In this intimate book, Tyler Perry writes of how his faith has sustained him in hard times, centered him in good times, and enriched his life.

Beginning with his earliest memories of growing up a shy boy in New Orleans, Perry recalls the moments of grace and beauty in a childhood marked by brutality, deprivation, and fear. With tenderness he sketches portraits of the people who sustained him and taught him indelible lessons about integrity, trust in God, and the power of forgiveness: his aunt Mae, who cared for her grandfather, who was born a slave, and sewed quilts that told a story of generations; Mr. Butler, a blind man of remarkable dignity and elegance, who sold penny candies on a street corner; and his beloved mother, Maxine, who endured abuse, financial hardship, and the daily injustices of growing up in the Jim Crow South yet whose fierce love for her son burned bright and never dimmed. Perry writes of how he nurtured his dreams and discovered solace in nature, and of his resolute determination to reach ever higher.

Perry vividly and movingly describes his growing awareness of God’s presence in his life, how he learned to tune in to His voice, to persevere through hard times, and to choose faith over fear. Here he is: the devoted son, the loving father, the steadfast friend, the naturalist, the philanthropist, the creative spirit—a man whose life lessons and insights into scripture are a gift offered with generosity, humility, and love.
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle)(Hardcover)(Audiobook)(Audio CD)

These Wilds Beyond Our Fences by:Bayo Akomolafe
Tackling some of the world’s most profound questions through the intimate lens of fatherhood, Bayo Akomolafe embarks on a journey of discovery as he maps the contours of the spaces between himself and his three-year-old daughter Alethea. Told as a series of letters to Alethea in a voice that is by turns poetic, vulnerable, and revelatory–but always engaging–this book describes the daily encounters between the author and his sprightly young daughter, and the failures and redemptions that arise in course of their life together. The book is about giving Alethea a bath, learning to brush her teeth, navigating her demands, concern about her fixation with hand-held devices, watching her refuse to cooperate with her dance instructor, and much more. It is also about the reflections and questions that run through and around their relationship. What does it mean to be a parent? What is our place in this world? Where is our home?

Akomolafe’s narrative is urgent and unguarded as he discovers that something as commonplace as becoming a father is a cosmic event of unprecedented proportions. Using this realization as a touchstone, he is led to consider the strangeness of his own soul, to contemplate the myths and rituals of modernity, to ask questions about food and justice, to ponder what it means to be human, to evaluate what we can do about climate change, and to wonder what our collective yearnings for a better world tell us about ourselves. These Wilds Beyond our Fences is a passionate attempt to make sense of our disconnection in a world where it is easy to feel untethered and lost. It is a father’s search for meaning, for a place of belonging, and for reassurance that the world will embrace and support our children once we are gone.
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Paperback)

Madison Park by:Eric L. Motley
Welcome to Madison Park, a small community in Alabama founded by freed slaves in 1880. And meet Eric Motley, a native son who came of age in this remarkable place where constant lessons in self-determination, hope, and unceasing belief in the American dream taught him everything he needed for his journey to the Oval Office as a Special Assistant to President George W. Bush.

Eric grew up among people whose belief was to “give” and never turn away from your neighbor’s need. There was Aunt Shine, the goodly matriarch who cared so much about young Motley’s schooling that she would stand up in a crowded church and announce Eric’s progress or his shortcomings. There was Old Man Salery, who secretly siphoned gasoline from his beat-up car into the Motley’s tank at night. There were Motley’s grandparents, who bought books for Eric they couldn’t afford, spending the last of their seed money. And there was Reverend Brinkley, a man of enormous faith and simple living. It was said that whenever the Reverend came your way, light abounded. Life in Madison Park wasn’t always easy or fair, and Motley reveals personal and heartbreaking stories of racial injustice and segregation. But Eric shows how the community taught him everything he needed to know about love and faith.

This charming, engaging, and deeply inspiring memoir will help you remember that we can create a world of shared values based on love and hope. It is a story that reveals the amazing power of faith in God and each other. If you’re in search of hope during troubled times, look no further than Madison Park.
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle)(Hardcover)(Audiobook)(MP3 CD)

The Annotated African American Folktales by:Henry Louis Gates
Collected for the first time, these nearly 150 African American folktales animate our past and reclaim a lost cultural legacy to redefine American literature.

Drawing from the great folklorists of the past while expanding African American lore with dozens of tales rarely seen before, The New Annotated African American Folktales revolutionizes the canon like no other volume. Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Maria Tatar assemble a groundbreaking collection of folktales, myths, and legends that revitalize a vibrant African American past untainted by romantic antebellum sentiment or counterfeit nostalgia. Beginning with introductory essays and 20 seminal African tales as historical background, Gates and Tatar present nearly 150 African American stories, among them familiar Brer Rabbit classics, but also stories like “The Talking Skull” and “Witches Who Ride,” out-of-print tales from the 1890s Southern Workman, and stories that finally incorporate Caribbean and Latin American literature within the canon. With illuminating annotations and revelatory illustrations, The New Annotated African American Folktales reminds us that stories not only move, entertain, and instruct but, more fundamentally, inspire and keep hope alive. color throughout; 160 illustrations
Release: 11/14/17
Click to purchase: (Kindle) or (Hardcover)

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