Book List

I decided to get back into reading. My usual problem is finding something that can peak AND hold my interest. Some books quench my thirst, some books leave me disappointed at the halfway mark and I have to put it down. BUT! I have found a few that are great and should be added to YOUR reading list too:
1. “Black Privilege” by Charlamagne the God
2. “Around the Way Girl” by Taraji P. Henson
3. “Tears We Cannot Stop; A Sermon to White America” by Michael Eric Dyson
4. “Strangers In Their Own Land” by Arlie Russell Hochschild
5. “Year of Yes” by Shonda Rhimes
Lemme Tell you about ’em.
 black privilege
“Black Privilege” Opportunity Comes To Those Who Create It- This book by Charlamagne is literally a piece of work as is he. Its about his life and how all of the issues he had, became learning experiences that he made in to opportunities to get him into the position of influence that he’s in now. Its good. I listened to it on Audible and was laughing my muthafuckin ass off in the most awkward situations. But through the silliness he had some valid points. This is kinda what made me want to get back into reading more and the way that I chose some of my books. I have to admit, hearing the book read in his voice gave it a special magic. Maybe that’s what made me crack up so much because I actually like his slightly-raspy-with a lisp- voice.
FunFact: I met Charlamagne. Not like met met, or had a formal introduction, BUT! I said hi, he looked me in my face and he said hi back lol. He probably wouldn’t remember but this is what happened… (BTW: My girl Shanade was with me through this whole thing)

Shanade and I were going out in Downtown Charlotte for CIAA weekend. It was like a Sunday I believe. Charlamagne was hosting a party at Whisky River in the EpiCenter and I had bought tickets but it was so friggin crowded man!! OMG. We had to come up on the other side by where the pizza spot is on the first floor and it was hard. We came around the long way and it was like 3 lines all with people lined up on the stairs. Me and Shanade started yelling “We don’t want to cut, we’re trying to get through! PLEASE LET US THROUGH!”.. so people started letting us through their lines. We walked up to the door and asked the doorman why he wasn’t letting people in. He simply said, “Because its over capacity” AUH. We were crushed. I was pissed 😡 So Me and Shanade went the opposite way of the line and we jumped the rope and walked hella fast along the wall. Enter in a big dude followed by a shorter bald big nosed dark skinned dude. I squinted. He got closer and walked past me and I knew it was him. I yelled “Hey Charlamagne!” He yelled back “Hey baby! How are you?!” I didn’t even say anything back. I’m sure he doesn’t remember it lol but I do.. We ended up going into the back hallways and on the side of Whisky River and back of Suite. We convinced the bouncer in the back of Suite to let me and Shanade in for 40$ and he said ok. It was all singles… and it was only 30$ lol. We went in the door and bolted to the front of the club before he could count the money so he wouldn’t find us lol. Plies was in there performing. And it was a good fucking night. NEXT!

Around the way girl taraji

“Around The way Girl: A Memoir” by Taraji P. Henson. Okay, I went through this book first and I had “Black Privilege” on the shelf before I finished this. I’ve always been a fan of Taraji P. Henson but I never knew how long she had been acting. To be honest, I never knew her story until this book and I was so inspired. She moved to LA to act when she was 26. I’m 25 and plan on making the move soon myself (not necessarily to act but the next statement makes this ironic). From the beginning to then end of listening to “Around The Way Girl” on  Audible, I had actually been told about an acting gig as an extra for a movie shooting in Cleveland, been booked, fitted, and performed. Some of the parallels between Taraji’s experience and mine were unreal. Her book had me cracking up rolling and laughing too; the impressions of her father and people she’d worked with and and met were comical and accurately illustrative. This just strengthened my faith in Taraji as an actress and as a proud black woman. I’d love the chance to meet her and feel her energy.

tears we cannot stop

So let me say this, I am only into the third chapter and I’m reading the hardback cover of this book. Its amazing. I am fresh in, and already, its amazing. I am looking forward to reading it so much that I have dedicated an hr a day to reading. I chose this book because of a conversation I had with my old promoter friend (from the Racism vs Branding Post). He’s so Pro-black but not to the point that I cant listen to what he has to say. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Michael Eric Dyson and hearing him speak at an event I was apart of working for the Abercrumbie Group in Cincinnati. He was electrifying. Ordinarily I can’t stay focused when a baptist Preacher speaks but this man is so educated, dynamic, and grounded, you can’t help but to listen. And  Reading this book with his voice in mind gives me life and I really get consumed by what I’m reading (BIG INVOLVED). I can’t wait to finish it.

**UPDATE** I have since finished reading Tears We Can Not Stop. Please check out my thoughts on another post I did.

Strangers in their own land

This book, “Strangers In Their Own Land” landed on my list due to the influence of Charlamagne. The author Hochschild writes about her journey from the liberal Berkeley, California to the depths of the Louisiana Bayou– the conservative south. She encounters people who give their account of politics and the social influences on their lives which opens up the discussion of people voting AGAINST their own interests. I can’t wait to crack into this. I have always found sociology interesting. I took a few sociology based courses in college and actually loved them (my grade might not reflect it but I actually did love them).  I’m intrigued by the concept of this book and I’m excited to see whats in store.

Last but not least…  drum roll

Year of yes

I am very excited to read this book. I’ve been looking for something along the lines of a self-help/self-empowerment book. I think I’ve found it in this book. I took interest in the fact that its by Shonda Rhimes, the amazing writer and producer of Scandal, Grey’s Anatomy, How To Get Away With Murder, and so many more. She talks about how she went from sub-consciously and aloud saying “no” to saying “yes” and OH the change that took place. I have yet to get to this one as well but when I do… I feel like I may see some change in myself as well.

**I will update this post after I’ve read through all of these books. To give you my full-on judgment call. So… To Be Continued 🙂

I hope that my list inspires YOU to make a reading list of your own, even if it is only 1 or 2 books. Ya gotta start somewhere!

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