Thursday, October 24, 2019

A comprehensive, in-depth, smart review of my historical romance, DISSENT

A non-Black blogger who gets it!

Yeah. I'm bringing race into it. If anyone tells you that not everything revolves around race here...They are either liars, deep asleep or never spent two minutes on this soil.

Yeah, I said it.

I thank Ms. Merry for taking the chance on acceptimg my review request, actually bothering to read my book and, surprise of all surprises, LIKING my book. She ADORED that it was not a run-of-the-mill, routine historical romance. She praised the fact that since it is a HISTORICAL romance it has HISTORY in it!

Can you imagine that? Something being what it is advertized to be?

She loved the detail. She loved how I blended  the research I did with my story-telling. She adored that it did not have the usual cast of characters.

It was different. Something she'd been craving.

The two most wonderful compliments she paid the book were that 1) it was long (which she liked) and that as a new mom she looked forward to returning to the story at the end of a busy day to get "swept up in Awa and Blaise's journey."

She called my book, "exquisite." Sigh.

She got the concept. She got my vision. The book had ALL the elements to qualify it as a historical romance but the main characters were atypical. She didn't whine about a "non-White heroine being hard to relate to."

She got it!

She didn't compare the book to other romances other than she wished they'd "change things up, and break down the usual cliches of the genre."

You got it, Ms. Merry. Thank you.

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Jessye Norman, Diahann Carroll, Raye Montague - 3 exceptional women who quietly, or not so quietly, conquered naysayers

Jessye Norman
Image result for jessye norman

Image result for jessye norman

Well, all three of these phenomenal women have gone on to their respective rewards. I'd been remiss as I'd only learned of Ms. Montague's passing. It'll be one year on Oct. 10th that she made transition.

Firsts. Ground-breakers. Pioneers.All the same words used to describe African Americans who defied stereotype. Who persevered despite setbacks. Who kicked in doors and begged no one's pardon. Who made others shut the eff up when they simply glanced in their direction.

To be the first, or nearly the first, in ANY capacity is a hard row to hoe for African-Americans. One must ignore bigots who LURVE to spew that one "only got the position to fill a quota." OY! One must also ignore the "crabs in a barrel mentality" from one's own and most assuredly one's own self-doubt.

Diahann Carrroll
Image result for diahann carroll

Image result for diahann carroll

A mother of a trifecta!

I'm sure all of these lovely women felt all of those barbs at one time or another but they kept going.

And the nigglings served them well.

Jessye, born into a musical family.  the Howard University- and Peabody Observatory-trained soprano reached the stratosphere in her profession. She also paid it forward by establshing a tuition-free program for disadvantaged students interested in pursuing the arts.

Short anecdote: I have an opera buff friend who met her once. Summoned to her dressing room after a performance, my friend was met at the door by La Norman, swathed in her Blackglamour mink and pearls, and SNEAKERS! She was quite real when it came to comfort.

Diahann, singer and actress who made a name for herself by helming the TV show "Julia" where she was the STAR. She played a nurse because she refused to be a maid on a TV show. On the nightitme soap, "Dynasty" she was Dominique Deveraux, head-bitch-in-charge/ millionaire Blake Carrington's illegitimate half-sister, and a worthy adversary to Joan Colins' character Alexis Carrington. Ms. Carroll was working well into her 8th decade.

And Raye. Brilliant Raye. One of the "Hidden Figures" who was a naval engineer credited with creating the first computer-generated rough draft of a U. S. naval ship. She was the first female program manager of ships in the United States Navy.

Raye Montague
Image result for raye montague

Image result for raye montague

Thank you for sharing your light! May all you Queens rest in power.