Saturday, April 3, 2010

I Love it When I Discover Books Like This. Two Autographed Copies Available. Book Review and Giveaway of a Literary Gem: GLORIOUS by Bernice McFadden

Title: Glorious
Author: Bernice McFadden
Publisher: Akashic Books
Format: Completed Book
ISBN: 978-1-936070-11-4
Price: $15.95 Pages: 239
Release Date: May 2010

Okay folks. Once again, I've had the pleasure of reading a book that turned out to be on the right side of awesome. The author sent an e-mail and inquired about a review. I don't often turn down an opportunity to read books so I was up for it. I had no idea what to expect when I recieved it from the publisher. It's not a very long book at 239 pages and at first glance, the cover didn't really tell me much about what the book was about.

If you're a writer or aspiring author as I am, you know that the gatekeepers of the literary world are not keen on prologues. They'd rather you weave that information into the body of the story itself. I'm going to do something a little different this time. Instead of giving you the blurb from the back of the book, I'm going to give you a taste of the prologue. No rule is absolute and this is an example of a prologue that accomplishes it's goal--to set the stage for a poignant, painful tale that has been all too true in the annuls of American history. Behold...

If Jack Johnson had let James Jeffries beat him on July 4, 1910, which would have proven once and for all that a white man was ten times better than a negro, then black folks wouldn't have been walking around with their backs straight and chests puffed out, smiling like Cheshire cats, upsetting good, God-fearing white folk who didnt mind seeing their Negros happy, but didn't like seeing them proud.

If Jack Johnson had given up and allowed James Jeffries to clip him on the chin, which would have sent him hurling down to the floor where he could have pretended to be knocked out cold, then maybe Easter Barlett's father wouldn't have twirled his wife and daughters around the house by thier pinky fingers and his son John Bartelett Jr. wouldn't have felt for the first time in his life to be pleased and glad to be a black man. And if Jack Jackson had let the shouts of "Kill that nigger" that rang out from the crowd unravel him or the Nevada heat irritate him, maybe then he would have lost the fight and things would have remained as they were.

Things could have gone a different way if Jack Johnson hadn't gotten the notion some years earlier to cap his teeth in gold, so his smile added insult to injury when he was announced the victor of  "The Fight of the Century," and that glittering grin slapped white folk hard across their faces.

And if John Bartlett Sr. hadn't bet on Jack Johnson to win, then he wouldn't have had the extra money to buy his wife and two daughters new dresses from the most expensive dress shop in town, and the older of the two girls called Rlizbeth wouldn't have let her hair down and donned that brand-new yellow dress that made her look like an angel, so those white boys wouldn't have noticed her, wouldnt have called out to her from across the road, wouldn't have followed her and jumped her just as she reached the bend and dragged her into the brush, where they raped and beat her.

If all of that hadn't happened, then Easter wouldn't have looked up to see her sister crawling home on all fours like a dog, with a bloodstain shaped like the state of Texas on the backside of Rlizbeth's dress. Easter wouldn't have bore witness to the bite marks on Rlizabeth's breasts, and wouldn't have heard the silence that streamed out of Rlizabeth's mouth when she opened it to scream.


Bernice McFadden is a masterfull storyteller. I winced more than once at some of the scenes that are a template of fact in America's ugly history of racism and inhumanity to his fellow man. And yet, while it is a story of paradise lost, it takes the reader on a journey to paradise and redemption regained again. You'll follow Easter Bartlett on her journey from young girl, whose sister's rape changed the trajectory of her life, to a woman of advanced years who see's the hand of justice work its slow, but steady resolve in her own painful saga.

McFadden weaves historical figures into the story with an ease and flow that clearly shows her skill and attention to historical detail. Marvelous.

Don't miss your opportunity to get an autographed copy of this book. It is a keeper.

If you're not a follower, please become one. Leave a comment and your email or a way to contact you. That's it. If you're on Twitter, please tweet about this giveaway, if you have a blog, please post about it. Let me know that you did. Thanks in advance.

I don't have a firm deadline as yet for when this giveaway will end. Maybe a week, maybe more or less. I'll see.

It's open to resident's of the US, CANADA, and UK.

Thanks to Bernice McFadden for making two autographed copies available. The winners will not regret it.



  1. Enter me please! This sounds really good!

    jennala @ cfl . rr . com

    I am already a follower.

  2. Please enter me! This book sounds great!
    email bangersis(at)msn(dot)com
    I tweeted

  3. Thanks for the contest! Sounds like a great book!

    I also tweeted:


  4. I am already a follower of your blog and would love to win this title.

  5. This one sounds really interesting, would love to win it. I am a follower.

    felinmanor@aol dot com

  6. I'm following with GFC as Tethered Mommy. This book looks intriguing and would be honored to win an autographed copy. :)

    Maggie at tethered mommy dot com

  7. I already have this book and I loved it. Great review.

  8. I am interested in the book; And I'm now following you. I have a blog; nothing big and I twitter too and don't mind passing the news on.

  9. I've retweeted--very excited to see another good review of McFadden's book. I haven't read "Glorious," yet, but will soon. "Sugar" has stayed with me for years, and I expect it to be the same with this new work.

    Following! :)

  10. This would be such an honor to read Ms. McFadden's book. I have loved all of them so far and I'm sure this one will be just as great. Please enter me in the giveaway.

    bstilwell12 at comcast dot net

  11. I am a current follower
    I tweeted about this giveaway:

    bstilewll12 at comcast dot net

  12. I am a current follower. I tweeted about this giveaway:

    bstilwell12 at comcast dot net

  13. Sounds intriguing!

    janemaritz at yahoo dot com

  14. sounds cool

  15. Please count me in.

    I am a follower.

    teresasreadingcorner at gmail dot com

  16. Bernice McFadden is my new favorite author. Please enter me into this giveaway.
    I'll post a link to this on my facebook account.

  17. I have this book sitting on my shelf, and will read it next week! Glad to hear it is awesome!!

  18. I'd like a copy for our library. I'm posting your link.

  19. I would love to get a copy...thanks for the opportunity! I will tweet for the giveaway!


  20. I am a follower & I tweeted

  21. Please count me in for this giveaway.


  22. I follow and this sounds like an amazing read. Thanks so much!

  23. I saw you leave a comment on my blog and came on over. I love your site and I've just became a follower. This book sounds great. I'd love a chance to win a copy!


I enjoy reading what you have to say. Seriously!