Afrikan Holistic Health by Laila O. Afrika
started 2/4/07 finished 2/10/07
As most of you know I used to manage 2 Black bookstores here in Atlanta. In Black bookstores you find many of the same books that you find in the African-American sections of mainstream stores. But there is a whole genre of titles that are bestseller within the “Afrikan-centered Consciousness” community (of which I am a full-fledged member; I just leave my cape at home when I go to Buckhead). This is one of those titles. Like most holistic health titles, it focuses on vegetable based diet and nutrition, alternative healing practices, and detoxing from self-destructive habits. The difference is that it is told within the context of the history of Afrikan people and the physical, emotional, and spiritual ramifications of White supremacy. There is a lot of useful information, but there was quite a bit that left me scratching my head at his conclusions. It stays on my health bookshelf (yes, I have one just for that) anyway.
The Cure: Heal Your Body, Save Your Life by Timothy Brantley
started 2/5/07 finished 2/11/07
One of the best books on natural healing that I have lately (and my current lifestyle habits notwithstanding, I read a lot). He became a natural health practitioner in response to his mother’s battle with cancer and his own health challenges. Through trial and error, common sense and many wrong diagnoses from medical doctors, he healed himself and others. Don’t let the kudos from Sylvester Stallone turn you away from this book. I am pretty sure that Brantley isn’t responsible for the steroid and growth hormone use.
An Original Man: The Life & Times of Elijah Muhammad by Claude Andrew Clegg III
started 2/4/07 finished 3/22/07
Every February, in honor of Black History Month, I read either a classic work or a biography of a prominent African-American. This book is out of print now, but I bought a copy at the $5 black bookstore in the West End Mall by my apartment. (Due to inflation, I am now told it is the $7 black bookstore in the West End Mall). Unfortunately, I really didn’t learn anything new about the Honorable Elijah Muhammad that I hadn’t already learned in other readings on the Nation of Islam or Malcolm X.
Man Gone Down by Michael Thomas
started 2/11/07 finished didn’t
I hate not finishing a book. Especially one that I read about in the esteemed New York Times book review. Especially one that is well received and got pretty good reviews. It was just a case of not the right time to read this book. The story is about a Black man married to a White woman (from a prominent Boston family) and the father of 3 children. He loses his job and his family losing their place to live. While his wife takes the children to stay with her family for the summer, it is up to him to pick up pieces of his life to support his family and save his marriage.
I just didn’t’ seem to have patience for him and his plight. Probably shouldn’t try to read a book about an unemployed black man and his disappointed white wife during Black History Month.
The New Moon’s Arms by Nalo Hopkinson
started 2/15/07 finished 2/25/07
Whatever she writes, I will read. That is how much I love Nalo Hopkinson. I am relatively new to the science fiction genre, coming to it as an adult and not as a pimply-faced adolescent. (Come to think of it, I didn’t really get pimples until I was an adult either. I was a beautiful smooth-skinned teenager….but I digress). Rather than using some far off planet and it’s creatures as a foundation this book, she uses themes related to Africa and the Middle Passage to tell her story. A woman in mid-life buries her father and begins to notice things reappearing from her childhood. First it is small things like toys, soon a whole orchard from the island she was raised on (that disappeared in a storm) shows up next to house she is currently living in. A parallel story is told about sea lions that start to go missing from the local zoo. After you read this go back and read all of her books.