Welcome to our Wacky Wednesday posts! On Wednesdays, we will discuss random questions or ideas in our posts and will explore them from the perspectives of both Da Realist 1 and Da Hype 1. The topics will change each week, so we invite you to engage in our discussions.
The writers at 2 Dope Sistahs are avid readers. At any given moment, we could be reading a romance novel or a book of non-fiction. In fact, we are usually reading several books. From time to time, we would like to share with you the books that are on our night stands. Please feel free to tell us what you are reading or comment on the ones we are discussing.
Da Realist 1
I am currently reading Baratunde Thurston’s How to Be Black, just to make sure I’ve been doing it right all these years. He is a self-proclaimed expert who has “more than 30 years experience being black.” This comedian and best-selling author, formerly of The Onion, is also the co-founder of Jack & Jill Politics, a black political blog. I found out about Thurston’s book from his followers on Twitter, who often tweet pictures of themselves reading the book and chime in with their own stories.
Thurston combines sharp satire, autobiographical notes, and interviews with “The Black Panel” into a book that is thoughtful and humorous. I could relate to many of his experiences trying to navigate the divide between the black family/community and the larger culture. Using his wit, Thurston reminds both blacks and whites that black people (like all people) are complex and that individuals do not necessarily conform to preconceived, stereotypical notions about race. Blackness is not monolithic.
So, it seems I had nothing to worry about. Whew! I am in fact living “blackly.”
I was on vacation for a couple of weeks, and while on vacation, I try to relax and avoid reading anything that could potentially feel like work. This year, I picked up a copy of Beverly Jenkins‘ newest romance novel, Destiny’s Embrace.
In Destiny’s Embrace, we are introduced to new characters. The female protagonist, Mariah Cooper, escapes her hateful mother’s home by working as a maid in the home of the very handsome Logan Yates. Her headstrong ways, combined with her beauty, were a perfect match for the handsome and single Logan. Although the two battled for many pages, no one could deny that they were destined to be together.
I have to admit, however, this may have been my least favorite book by Jenkins, mostly because I didn’t find the protagonist to be as dynamic a character as the women she wrote about in the past. What I did enjoy about Destiny’s Embrace, however, is that like all of her novels, I always I learn something new from reading them.
As a note, Jenkins’ works are set either in the pre- or post-bellum South or during Western Expansion. I especially like her works on Western Expansion because I am unfamiliar with the narratives of black folks who left the post-bellum South for places like Oklahoma.
If you are looking for a great romance novelist, I would definitely recommend a Beverly Jenkins book, just not this one as your first novel of hers to read.
So, what are you, our Dope Audience, reading? Let us know below.