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Category Archives: Gift Book Showcase

Nandi’s Unexpected Gift by Ama Kuma

Nandi has been inspiring girls all across the country, and she loves meeting new little faces. Grab your little ones a copy of Nandi’s Unexpected Gift today!

 

With her 10th birthday coming up, Nandi is eager to receive a special gift that she’s never asked for before, something that makes her feel like she’s really growing up and becoming more like her big sister Vanessa. She and her buddies Anara and Lila have some very important studying to do for school, but Nandi’s excitement about her birthday causes her to lose focus and head down a path she wasn’t expecting to go. In the end, it’s her Grandma Janie who teaches her a very important lesson and gives her the best gift she’s ever received. The unexpected gift her grandmother gives her is not only a gift for Nandi, but for you as well!

 

Nandi’s Unexpected Gift Book Reviews
Read more Amazon book reviews, go here.

 

 

 

“In Nandi’s Unexpected Gift, Ama Kuma creates a character and a community full of Black love and Black beauty where children not only thrive to be their very best, but also see their beauty reflected in their culture and the nurturing of mamas, grandmas, teachers and friends, especially in the face of life lessons that yield the greatest gift of all: Love.  All children will see themselves in Nandi and her struggle.  At time when representation of Black children in American publishing is lacking, Ama Kuma gifts us Nandi’s Unexpected Gift, a story that is, in the words of Alice Walker, a ‘temple of our familiar.'”
-Tony Medina, Poet, Children’s Book Author, Professor of Creative Writing at Howard University

 

 

“As a mother to a young girl, I look for diversity in the books I choose for her to read.  Ama’s story Nandi’s Unexpected Gift not only celebrates the beauty of our young brown girls, she captures the sense of family, and our values as well.  Nandi’s Unexpected Gift is a story for young and older audiences.  I was able to share and enjoy this story with my daughter along with the beauty of seeing a young girl who mirrored her reflection.  This is a timeless story, by a truly extraordinary author.  I can’t wait for the next story in Nandi’s journey.”
-Elle Henry, Managing Editor/Owner, Tres Chic Edits                                                                                              

 

“There is a certain urgency to the life of a young African American girl discovering what makes her unique in a world that seems to demand that everyone fit some standard that is based on how we look or what we wear.  It is a journey shared by many youth, one often too mysterious and difficult to understand.  But here, in Nandi’s Unexpected Gift, author Ama Kuma creates an intimate space for discovery through a familiar experience rendered anew through the life of Nandi, one super smart and adventurous young African American girl.  Nandi is delightfully engaging as she counts raindrops during thunderstorms, climbs trees, makes up lyrics to the jazz her grandmother plays at home, and basks in the love of her family. Set in the lush landscape of Polk County, Florida, this story illuminates an important rite of passage in Nandi’s life as her tenth birthday approaches.  There are unexpected challenges for her to face, even in the magical realm of her dreams.  Avery-Liell-Kok’s illustrations reflect the vibrant lives of the characters revealed so lovingly by Ama Kuma’s writing.  And the book is certainly a crucial affirmation of the spectacular lives of African American girls.  It centers, lifts, and celebrates them.  It is one of those children’s books that will be remembered for years to come; the kind that you hold onto far into your adult years.  It is a book you pass to others, knowing they will find themselves in the pages and hold onto what’s discovered there.  It is a treasure of a book, an absolute gift of a story.”
-Nina Angela Mercer, Playwright/Interdisciplinary

 

Nandi’s Unexpected Gift  gives its readers a gift: a story that brings to life intriguing and thoroughly human characters whose time together captures a slice of their lives and finds joy and wonder in the ordinary elements that make up their days.  The adept way in which the story entwines the characters’ conversations and the accounts of their actions makes this story one that will draw in readers and convince them to turn the pages to find out what happens next.”
-AuthorHouse Editorial Dept

 

Book Excerpt: Nandi’s Unexpected Gift

When her mother finally pulled up in the driveway, Nandi jumped to her feet and sprinted to retrieve the carefully crafted list from under her pillow.  Before her mother even made it to the front door, Nandi was already at the entrance, jumping up and down, flailing her arms about, and yelling, “Mama, Mama, I finished my birthday list!”

Her mother sighed as she rubbed Nandi’s cheek and replied, “That’s wonderful, baby doll, but give me a chance to get settled for a minute before I take a look at what you got, okay?  Today was a long day at work, and I just need some peace and quiet.  Also, I need you to grab another umbrella and help me get the rest of the groceries out of the back seat.”

Reluctantly, Nandi put her list down and ran back to her room to get an umbrella.  She didn’t realize all the noise she’d been making had woken her grandmother from her slumber.

“Hey, now, Di-Di, what have I told you ‘bout runnin’ in the house?” her grandmother said.  “Child, one day you gonna fly into a wall like a lost bird or knock over a lamp.”

“Sorry, Grandmama Janie,” Nandi replied respectfully. “I’m just excited to show Mama my birthday list.  I finished it up last night.”

“That’s fine and dandy honey, but you still can’t go around runnin’ like a wild boar.  You almost scared your poor Grandmama to death.  I ain’t no spring chicken no more,” she said with a heavy sigh. “Now let me take a look at this list that’s got you actin’ all crazy.”

( Continued… )

© 2016 All rights reserved.  Book excerpt reprinted by permission of the author, Ama Kuma.  Do not reproduce, copy or use without the author’s written permission. This excerpt is used for promotional purposes only.

Order Copies of Nandi’s Unexpected Gift
Genre:  YA, Children’s Book (8-11)
https://www.amazon.com/Nandis-Unexpected-Gift-Ama-Kuma/dp/1524619124

About the Author

Ama Kuma was born Alexia J. Hogan in Orlando, FL.  The pen name “Ama Kuma” was adopted after a trip to Ghana in 2007.  As a child, she loved to read, sing, dance, and climb trees.  Her passion for language and art continued to grow as she grew older, and she loved to learn about people from all walks of life.  She studied English at Howard University in Washington, D.C., and Africana Studies at New York University before returning to Polk County to teach elementary school.  Ama currently resides in her hometown of Orlando where she enjoys writing, painting, singing, playing the piano, and going wherever the wind takes her.  Nandi’s Unexpected Gift is her first published book.

Website:  http://www.amakuma.net
Twitter:  @ama_kuma1
Instagram:  amakuma_author
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ama_kuma1
FB:  https://www.facebook.com/NandiUGift

 

 

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A Touch Of Love by Sheryl Lister

A Touch Of Love by Sheryl Lister
(Book 4 in The Grays of Los Angeles Series)

And, yep, it’s available at:  http://amzn.to/2jaTxAc

Lexia Daniels can’t deny that her café’s most loyal customer is as tempting as any of the delicious treats she bakes. Burned by a bitter divorce, she tries to keep her desire in check around Khalil Gray, but the gorgeous ex-model is intent on seduction. Then a devastating accident reveals the complicated man behind the perfectly sculpted body… A man she can’t seem to resist.

At first, Khalil sees Lexia as a sexy challenge. But after an explosion shatters his world, she becomes the only person he can’t seem to push away. And every sign around him is telling him he needs her close. Khalil is happy to explore their erotic chemistry as long as it means resisting real emotion. But playing by his old rules could cost him the love he never thought he’d find…

About the Author
Sheryl Lister has enjoyed reading and writing for as long as she can remember. When she’s not reading, writing or playing chauffeur, Sheryl can be found on a date with her husband or in the kitchen creating appetizers and bite-sized desserts. She holds a B.S. in Occupational Therapy and post-professional M.S. in Occupational Therapy from San Jose State University. She resides in California and is a wife, mother of three and works as a pediatric occupational therapist.

 

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Sin of a Woman (A Curtis Black Novel) by Kimberla Lawson Roby

“Kimberla Lawson Roby has reached a pinnacle
most writers only dream of.” – Rockford Register Star

After her very public divorce from Dillon, Raven Black is recovering nicely.  Dillon has done everything he can to discredit her, but Raven has learned from her mistakes and him.  In fact, she’s intent on using every bit of Dillon’s revenge and betrayal, as she prepares to take what is hers—and more.  Her ambitions have never been so great, and Raven always knows how to get what she wants.  She also won’t allow anything or anyone to get in her way.

She has become her ex-husband in more ways than one and is slowly leading those connected to her down a terrible path of destruction.  But playing with the lives of innocent people has dire consequences—the kind that Raven won’t see coming.  Raven, of all people, should know that what happens in the dark will eventually come to light…and that there’s only so far you can run before your past catches up to you.

Chapter 1

Raven—Pastor Raven Jones Black, that is—scanned the interior of her massive second-floor office, smiled, and strolled closer to the large picture window. But as she gazed down at all the vehicles that were lined up in the church’s parking lot, it was still hard to believe that everything had evolved so quickly. And in such perfect order, too. Yes, having a one-thousand-plus-member congregation was all that she’d hoped for, but she wasn’t sure she’d expected to see her dreams come to pass in only two years. Of course, it hadn’t hurt that nearly two hundred members from her ex-husband’s former church had joined right away. Because had they not, she knew her ministry would have taken a lot longer to build.

Raven gazed around her office again, admiring her espresso-colored Italian leather sofa, matching loveseat, two oversized chairs, CEO-style mahogany desk, and executive chair. When they’d first purchased New Vision Christian Center and had moved into the building six months ago, the pastor’s study had been only half the size it was now. But the more folks had joined the congregation and paid tithes and offerings on a regular basis, the more upgrades Raven had been able to make—both at the church and for herself. From tearing out a wall and doubling the size of her office to clearing out her closet at home and stepping up her wardrobe game, she’d made lots of changes for the better.

To tell the truth, she’d always dressed in expensive clothing, even when she’d been married to that awful ex-husband of hers, Pastor Dillon Whitfield Black. But today she only wore suits that came from some of the highest-end stores people shopped at. In fact, the couture-style fuchsia jacket and skirt she wore now had come from Bergdorf Goodman in New York. She didn’t get the opportunity to shop there often, what with her residing in Mitchell, Illinois, but whenever she did fly to New York for a ministry engagement, she never left before spending at least a little time at Bergdorf, Barneys, or Saks’s flagship location. She did the same thing at the Neiman Marcus flagship store when she visited Dallas, and although some people might not understand her great desire to live well and have the best of everything, she knew it was only because they didn’t know her story. Her childhood horror story. Her reason for deciding early on that when she became an adult, she would never go without any of the things she wanted, not if she could help it.

What was so amazing, though, was that regardless of how great her life seemed to be going, she still reflected on her blemished past. She certainly didn’t want to, but no matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t forget about her very public and very nasty divorce from Dillon. She couldn’t pretend she hadn’t spent time in prison for stealing a hundred thousand dollars from her former father-in-law, Reverend Curtis Black. She couldn’t dismiss the fact that she’d once struggled with a very serious gambling addiction.

She hadn’t even known Dillon back when she’d worked as CFO for his father’s church, and now, she regretted the day she’d contacted him. But when she’d heard about the fallout between him and his dad, she’d decided to reach out to Dillon, letting him know that she understood his pain and that she could help him build a much larger church than the one Pastor Black had founded. This, of course, had secured Dillon’s undivided attention, and not long after she’d been released from prison, they’d begun seeing each other and had gotten married. Raven had truly loved him, too, and she could tell he’d loved her—at least for a while. But then greed and power had become a lot more important to Dillon, and he’d commenced having an affair with another woman. And then a second one.

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To Find You by Cerece Rennie Murphy

Two Souls
One Desire
To Find Each Other…Again
How many times would you die to find your one true love?
The journey begins with Ama and Ekow ~ Two lovers betrothed, then torn apart by an enemy disguised as a friend. And in the midst of an unthinkable bargain, their freedom is sold for a bag of gold.

But what their enemies thought would break them only unleashed a power greater than life itself.

From the ancient shores of Ghana to the streets of pre-colonial India,

From the burning embers of Oahu to the heart of a nation’s capitol,

Their souls risked war, death, and betrayal to bend destiny to their will.

Will they survive? Will they succeed? Join them on this timeless journey and see…

Listen to a reading from the Historical Romance, To Find You by Cerece Rennie Murphy
http://www.audioacrobat.com/note/C7GN8vWk/

 

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YOUNG but Grown…Womanish by Angelia Vernon Menchan

 

YOUNG But Grown…Womanish are first hand accounts of young women growing into womanhood and all the travails and triumphs that entails. Angelia Vernon Menchan spares no one, least of all herself in the ways young women, particularly, African American women grow into womanhood.

 

5-Star Review from Roslyn M. Joneson
You can’t read an Angelia Vernon Menchan book without seeing yourself. Her books are real, transparent, and they cause you to look back over your life to see if you’ve conquered or if you still have work to do. I enjoyed all of the stories in Young…But Grown Womanish and I’m going back in for more of her wisdom.

5-Star Review from Rhonda Gilbert  
This book had me in my feelings. You never know what a person endures growing up. A strong village (parents, aunts, uncles, friends, etc.) can make a difference in a child’s life. There’s examples of this happening and not happening in the various stories. People can seem to have it all, but still be unhappy and missing something in their lives. That is one of the reasons to never envy someone because of what you assume what they have.  Mrs. Menchan bared her soul in this book. This takes guts to put herself out there.

I love all of the stories. I find myself wanting to know what the people in the stories are doing now (those that are alive). This book proves that children can be successful regardless of their economic background, it takes the love, nurturing, guidance and discipline of strong parent(s).

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Ellis and The Hidden Cave by Aryeh and Cerece Rennie Murphy

Ellis and The Hidden Cave
by Aryeh and Cerece Rennie Murphy

An Ancient Civilization
An Underwater World
And A New Quest for the StoneKeeper!

Ellis, Toro and Freddye are at it again in the 2nd book in the Ellis Monroe Series Early Reader Chapter Book! Join them as they explore a hidden world, face more nasty Bugabols and discover that there are many kinds of superpowers!   Ellis and The Hidden Cave is book 2.  Ellis and the Magic Mirror is book 1 in the early reader series.  Join the Facebook community: https://www.facebook.com/ellisandthemagicmirror/


Excerpt from Ellis and The Hidden Cave

Chapter 1  Spring Break!

“Hurry up! Recess ends in one minute,” his teammates shouted from the sidelines.  Sprinting ahead, Ellis Monroe caught up with the soccer ball and turned toward the goal.  To his right, Ellis saw Max Washington running toward him. Ellis knew that Max wanted him to pass the ball, so that Max could try to score for the win. Max thought he was the best player on his team and always let everyone know it.  But Ellis thought a pass would be too risky. Instead, seeing an opening on the field, Ellis quickly dribbled forward. Suddenly, Kevin Taylor appeared and bumped Ellis, trying to steal the ball away. Ellis kicked the ball, hard, and watched as it sailed toward the goal.  And out of bounds.

Max came charging up to Ellis. “What’d you go and do that for?” he yelled, as several kids joined them.

“Are you trying to lose the game?” Omar Mendez said. “Yeah, Ellis, did you forget where the goal is?” asked Nate Weaver, and a few kids laughed.

Ellis flushed as the children closed in on him. He looked around at the group of kids and wished his best friend Toro Quispe wasn’t at home sick today.  “Cut it out, guys,” said Ellis, looking around for a teacher. Max moved closer to Ellis. “You should have passed me the ball!” he said. “I would have scored.”  “It was a mistake. Just drop it, Max, okay?” Ellis said.
“I should drop kick you,” Max replied, putting his face just inches away from Ellis.

“Back off, Max!” Ellis yelled, but Max stepped closer. “It’s just a game!” he said, then pushed Max away from him.

Max stumbled backward, then tripped on his feet and fell. “You pushed me!” he shouted, scrambling to his feet. Just then, Mrs. Lee appeared out of nowhere and Max ran straight to her just as the recess bell rang. Ellis hung his head, wondering how much trouble he was going to be in.

When Ellis and his younger sister Freddye got home from school, both their parents were waiting for him in the living room. “Ellis, we got a call from the principal today,” his dad said quietly. Ellis looked from one parent to another, tears pricking the back of his eyes. “I was only trying to defend myself,” Ellis explained. “I wasn’t trying to hurt anybody.”

Mrs. Monroe walked over and gently put her hand on Ellis’ head. “Why don’t you sit down and tell us what happened,” she said. Ellis put his book bag down then sat on the couch, with Freddye trailing closely behind.  “I accidentally kicked the ball out of bounds and some of the kids got mad,” Ellis said. “I know Max wanted me to let him score, but he always hogs the ball and I saw an opening!” Ellis looked down. “But I missed.”

“And then?” his father prompted.

“Max got really mad and started yelling at me. And some of the other kids said stuff too.” Ellis sniffed. “And there were no teachers, and not even Toro was there. But then Max got in my face and said he should ‘drop kick me’.  I got mad and a little scared, too so I pushed him away.”

“Was he hurt?” asked his mother. Read the rest of this entry »

 

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Men and Intimacy: Real Talk, Real Answers by Therez Fleetwood

There are countless books on men and relationships that analyze and interpret men’s feelings about intimacy from a clinical or therapeutic approach. However, there are very few books that actually highlight men’s points of view on this topic in an uncut, complete, raw and emotional way.

Author, Therez Fleetwood, explores the complexities of relationships through the minds of men who give real, no holds barred answers to the questions that women want to ask.

There are many women who feel disconnected from their partner and desire to create a deeper bond.  This book is for those who are seeking to understand why men do the things they do when it comes to intimacy-related acts.  Oftentimes, women spend countless hours asking other women for advice on their relationships when they should be going directly to the source.  Men and Intimacy, Real Talk. Real Answers is the source. What you will discover is what men really think about intimacy, women, relationships, sex, love, cheating, and pornography.

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