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* One Star - Would not recommend

** Two Stars - May recommend, with caution

*** Three Stars - Would recommend

**** Four Stars - Would Happily recommend

***** Five Stars - Would DEFINITELY recommend

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February 2024 Book Club Selection

Maame

By Jessica George

Hostess: Larrie

STBC Overall Rating: TBD

January 2024 - No Meeting

December 2023 Book Club Selection

Lucky Me

By Rich Paul

Hostess: Monica

STBC Overall Rating: 3-Stars

Synopsis of Lucky Me:

Rich Paul discusses growing up with a drug-addicted mother, a father who was married to another woman but was very active in his life. At a young age, he was good at shooting dice and became a gambler. Rich sold drugs for a while. He meets LeBron James and becomes his agent. Develops his own company, Klutch Sports Group, and is a premier agent in professional sports.

November 2023 Book Club Selection

CUZ - The Life and Times of Michael A.

By Danielle Allen

Hostess: Marilyn

STBC Overall Rating: 3-Stars

Synopsis of Cuz: 

Danielle Allen examines the life of her cousin, Michael Allen, who went to prison at the age of 16 for an attempted carjacking. He was sentenced to 11 years. Michael came back home only to get back entangled in the street life and tragically meets his fatal end by his lover.

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October 2023 Book Club Selection

I Am Debra Lee: A Memoir

By Debra Lee

Hostess: Shelly

STBC Overall Rating: 2.9 Stars

Synopsis of I Am Debra Lee: A Memoir
Debra Lee details the struggles of her life. She tells us about her failed marriages, her affair with Robert Johnson, the discrimination she felt being the CEO of BET and so much more.

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September 2023 Book Club Selection

A Mighty Love

By Anita Doreen Diggs

Hostess: Tami

STBC Overall Star Rating: 3.2 Stars

Synopsis of A Mighty Love – 

 

Adrienne & Melvin are a happily married couple until one day, Mel falls asleep with a lit cigarette that causes their baby to die in the fire.  Mel moves in with his sister and is surrounded by her friends who are into alcohol and other things that are not good for Mel. Adrienne moves in with her brother and sister in-law. After a while, Mel and Adrienne are living together again, trying to make their marriage work.

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August 2023 Book Club Selection

I Am Ayah

By Donna Hill

Hostess: Alethea

STBC Overall Star Rating: 3.2 Stars

Synopsis of I Am Ayah – 

Alessandra Fleming, a successful photographer, living in Manhattan, is called back to Sag Harbor, because her father is in the hospital. At home, Alessandra is  confronted with family secrets that are hidden in the house. She encounters Zach and is immediately captivated by him & he is drawn to her also. Alessandra sets out to discover her family history with the help of her lover, Zach.

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July 2023 Book Club Selection

Loving The Wrong Man

By Mia Black

Hostess: Neisha

STBC Overall Star Rating: 2.7 Stars

Synopsis of Loving The Wrong Man –

Jazmine has just caught her man with the next door neighbor in her bed. She leaves that relationship only to fall for another guy who is no good for her either.

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June 2023 Book Club Selection

Everyboby's Got Something

By Robin Roberts

Hostess: Tracey

STBC Overall Rating: 3.9 Stars

Synopsis of Everybody’s Got Something –

Robin Roberts’ memoir in which she tells us about how she conquered breast cancer, only to get a rare blood disorder years later that would require a bone marrow transplant. She tells us of her journey and the many people who were in her corner to show her love and support.

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May 2023 Book Club Selection

When We Were Birds

By Ayanna Lloyd Banwo

Hostess: Carla

STBC Overall Rating: 2.2-Stars

Synopsis of When We Were Birds: 

Yejide’s mother is dying & needs to leave behind the legacy of bringing souls into the after-life. Darwin’s mother raised him as a Rastafarian & he is not supposed to come into contact with the dead, although he takes a job at a graveyard. Darwin & Yejide meet inside a cemetery & fall in love.

April 2023 Book Club Selection

The Warmth of Other Suns

By Isabel Wilkerson

Hostess: Sabrina

STBC Overall Rating: 4.4 Stars

 

Synopsis of The House of Eve – 

Isabel Wilkerson interviewed more than a thousand people for the study should did on migration. Though she details the effect racism had on people’s decision to leave their homes, she focuses on 3 main characters. Ida Mae Gladney – who moved from Mississippi to Chicago; George Swanson Starling – moved from Eustis Florida to NY & Robert Forster moved from Louisiana to California. She dove deep into their reasons for exiting the states in which they dwelled & talked about the racism they endured and how they overcame their situations.

March 2023 Book Club Selection

The House of Eve

By Sadequa Jphnson

Hostess: Larrie

STBC Overall Rating: 4.8 Stars


Synopsis of The House of Eve – 

Story takes place in the 1950s. Ruby Pearsall wants to go to college & succeed in life despite having a mother who shows her no love and doesn’t protect her. Ruby falls hard for a Jewish boy which changes the trajectory of her life.

Eleanor Quarles attends Howard University and meets William Pride, from an elite rich Black family. They fall in love. Eleanor doesn’t feel like she fits in this family but when she becomes pregnant, she feels that a baby will help her feel more at home within William’s family. But unfortunate things happen, and Eleanor having babies isn’t easy. Eleanor and Ruby’s lives will be intertwined in a way they are unaware of.

February 2023 Book Club Selection

The Son of Mr. Sulemon

By Eric Jerome Dickey

Hostess: Andrea

STBC Overall Rating: 3.4 Stars


Synopsis of The Son of Mr. Sulemon – 

Pi Suleman, a professor, has a lot going on. He is being blackmailed by a white professor who is sexually harassing him and threatens to tell people that he is the one harassing her. He meets Gemma, a woman from London, who he has a passionate connection with. His father, a famous writer, dies and Pi goes to Los Angeles to collect his inheritance and learn about the father he never knew. With all his trials & tribulations, Pi is discovering who he is.

January 2023 Book Club Selection

Our Gen

By Diane McKinney-Whetstone

Hostess: Monica

STBC Overall Rating: 2.6 Stars


Synopsis of Our Gen – 

Tale about Cynthia, Lavia, Tish & Bloc who live in a 55+ community. They gather together to eat, smoke weed. Some characters can’t leave the problems of their past behind.  

December 2022 Book Club Selection

Forget It!  What's the point?

By Marguerite Orane

Hostess: Marilyn

STBC Overall Rating: 1.7 Stars

 

Synopsis of Forget It! What’s the Point? – 

A self-help book with a twist. Instead of author telling you what to do to get more joy in your life, she uses a collection of stories telling the reader what she does to make herself happy.

November 2022 Book Club Selection

Diamond Doris

By Doris Payne 

with Zelda Lockhart

Hostess: Shelly

STBC Overall Rating: 3.9


Synopsis of Diamond Doris – 

Doris Payne grew up poor in Slab Fork, West Virginia. She watched her father abuse her mother & vowed to always protect her mother. Doris was not going to let racism or anything else hold her back. She dressed well & used her charm to steal. An international Black woman jewel thief, Doris details her many adventures in her memoir.

July 2022 Book Club Selection

Black Cake

By Charmaine Wilkerson

Hostess: Carla

STBC Overall Rating: 3.3


Synopsis of Black Cake – 

Eleanor Bennett has died and she left behind a black cake made from a family recipe & a voice recording for her children Byron & Benny to listen too. The story that Eleanor tells is of her youth; when she left the island, being suspected of murder & having a long lost child. Byron & Benny discover that they truly did not know who their beloved mother was.

June 2022 Book Club Selection

Billy Porter Unprotected {a Memoir}

By Billy Porter

Hostess: Tracey

STBC Overall Rating: 3.85

 

Synopsis of “Unprotected: A Memoir 

by Billy Porter

Billy Porter tells us his life story in his own words. He was raised by a handicapped mother, sexually abused by his step-father, bullied in school, had doors slammed in his face, discriminated against but the multi-talented Billy never gave up. An inspirational story.

May 2022 Book Club Selection

The Darkest Child

By Delores Phillips

Hostess: Sabrina

STBC Overall Rating: TBD

September 2021 Book Club Selection

The Other Black Girl

By Zakiya Dalila Harris

Hostess: Tracey

STBC Overall Rating: TBD

Synopsis of The Other Black Girl

Synopsis of The Other Black Girl – Nella Rodgers, an editorial assistant, is the only African American employee at Wagner Books, a white publishing company. She is delighted when Hazel, a Black young lady is hired. Hazel becomes the ‘girl’ that everyone adores, which makes Nella a bit jealous…Notes start to appear on Nella’s desk telling her to “Leave Wagner Now.

Nella suspects the culprit might be Hazel & begins to investigate.

August 2021 Book Club Selection

The Death of Vivek Oji

By Akwaeke Emezi

Hostess: Sabrina

STBC Overall Rating: 4.0

Synopsis of The Death of Vivek Oji

Propulsively readable, teeming with unforgettable characters, The Death of Vivek Oji is a novel of family and friendship that challenges expectations—a dramatic story of loss and transcendence that will move every reader.

 

July 2021
How The One-Armed Sister 
Sweeps Her House

Hosted by: Larrie
STBC Star Rating: 3.5 Stars

Synopsis of How the One-Armed Woman Sweeps Her House -

Lala lives with her abusive husband, Adan, who is a criminal. One night, when arguing & tussling over their baby, the infant falls. Tone comes up with a wild scheme when the child doesn’t awake. Mira, who has lost her husband to a senseless tragedy, tries to go on. On the island of Barbados, lives are intertwined. Everyone is trying to cope with life the best way they know how.

June 2021
It's Not All Downhill from Here

By Terry McMillan
Hosted by: Monica

STBC Five Star Rating: 3 Stars


Synopsis of It’s All Downhill From Here – Loretha Curry’s husband has just died, her daughter acts as though she doesn’t want to be bothered with her mother. Korynthia , Sadie, Lucky & Poochie are there to support their friend, though they have their own problems. Kornythia is trying to find love, Sadie dates a married man & then ends up with what she really likes, Lucky is married & her husband wants a divorce, Poochie has a sickly mother that she cares for & her own serious health issues. All the ladies are in their 60s & prove that It is Not All Downhill From Here.

May 2021
 
The Final Revival of 
Opal & Nev
By Dawnie Walton
Hostess: Andrea

Five Star Rating: 5 Stars
Synopsis: Final Revival of Opal & Nev – Sunny Shelton is a music journalist who wants to tell the story of  Nev & Opal. Neville Charles discovers Opal at a bar’s amateur night. Opal, a Black woman, with a unique style all her own, always saw herself as a super star. It's the 1970s in New York City.  A white band that is with Opal’s label, proudly displays a confederate flag at a concert. Opal protests & violence erupts, causing lives to be changed.

April 2021


A Knock at Midnight

by Brittany K. Barnett

Hosted by Marilyn

Five Star Rating:  5 Stars


Synopsis: A Knock At Midnight – 

Memoir. Brittany Barnett’s mother becomes addicted to crack, her father also abuses drugs. However, with the love of her grandpar. ents and caring people around her, Brittany perseveres and becomes a successful lawyer and advocate for people being unfairly sentenced to harsh prison sentences.

March's 2021 Book Club Selection

Confessions In B-Flat

By Donna Hill

Hostess: Alethea

Synopsis of Confessions In B-Flat

It's the 1960's. Black people are fighting for their rights. Jason Tanner has relocated from Georgia to New York to spread Dr. Martin Luther Kings message of non-resistance to violence & recruit more people for the reverend' cause. Anita Hopkins is a die-hard Malcolm X follower and doesn't believe in turning the other cheek. When Jason & Anita meet, there is incredible chemistry. They fall in love, however, their ideologies interfere in their budding relationship. To come together, they have to realize that they are fighting for the same cause.

February's 2021 Book Club Selection

Patsy

By Nicole Dennis-Benn

Hostess: Tami

STBC Overall Star Rating: 3.5

Synopsis of Patsy:

Patsy leaves Jamaica to come to the United States to be with the women she loves. She leaves her 5 year old daughter, Tru behind. Patsy has to work low paying jobs and as Nanny to make ends meet as an undocumented immigrant. Meanwhile in Jamaica, Tru struggles to understand why her mother left her.

January's 2021 Book Selection

Rose Series Book One

"INTENSITY"

by

EDEN FORTAE 

Hostess: Shelly

STBC overall rating: 3 stars

Synopsis of Intensity: Kya Rich falls for Antonio Cortes, a criminal, whose main purpose in life is to ruin Kya's father& destroy Kya. However, Antonio's plans change, when he and Kya fall madly in love. The "Intensity" of their emotions have them longing for each other in ways they weren't prepared for.

December's book club selection

last stop from innocence.

takerra allen

Hostess: Carla 

STBC Overall Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis of last stop from innocence: This story takes place in the 90's..

Amore Brown moved to Jersey City for the summer to live with her estranged dad, a man she barley knows. Coming from an affluent town, she is thrust into a world that is totally different from the sheltered world she used to dwell in.

While mourning the loss of her mother from stomach cancer, Amore reunites with a long lost cousin, falls in love for the first time with Guap, a handsome, sexy guy, who is a mentor of a gang. She experiences another great loss, gets involved in a murder conspiracy, and heads off to college. 

The Last Stop on her way to college changes her life forever.

November's Book Club Selection

More Myself 

a Journey

By Alicia Keys

Hostess: Tracey

STBC Overall Rating: 3 Stars

Synopsis of More Myself: A Journey

Alicia Key's story of being more than a musician and combining her love of music with her love of giving back through the many organizations she has that she funds.

Being raised by a Caucasian mother, having a complicated relationship with her father, grapping with industry oppression of females, her many awards, love for her family...she tells her story.

October's Book Club Selection

The Mothers

By Brit Bennett

Hostess: Sabrina

STBC Overall Rating: 3.2 Stars

STBC Overall Rating: 3.2 Stars

Synopsis:

Nadia Turner’s mother committed suicide. Her mother’s death weighs on her, while she lives in a house with a quiet father who never mentions what happened to her mom. Nadia becomes sexually involved with Luke, the pastor’s son. She becomes pregnant & aborts the baby.

Aubrey & Nadia become best friends. When Nadia finds out that Aubrey is dating Luke, she doesn’t tell her friend that she aborted Luke’s baby. Luke & Aubrey marry, and the mistakes of Nadia’s & Luke’s youth come back to visit them.

September's Book Club Selection

The Vanishing Half

By Brit Bennett

Hostess: Larrie

Overall Rating: 4.7 Stars

In the Vanishing Half, the Vigness twins, Desiree & Stella, ran away from their hometown of Mallard (where only light complexioned people live), to find a new life in New Orleans. Although these twins are inseparable, while in New Orleans Stella discovers that her light complexion would allow her to cross the color line, and when she did, she separated from Desiree. 

Living as a white woman, Stella marries a white man and they have a daughter, Kennedy, and are enjoying their privileged “white” life.

Meanwhile, Desiree marries a very dark-complexioned man and they bore a daughter who took after her daddy and was “blue-black” as described by some of the people they encountered. Tired of her husbands’ abuse, Desiree takes their daughter Jude, and flee back to Mallard to live with her mother.

Jude and Kennedy meet, and to her surprise, Jude realizes Kennedy’s mother is her mother’s identical twin sister and she and Kennedy are cousins! Weaving together the sisters’ stories, complex issues arise.

August 2020 Book Club Selection

Bleeding Words

By Shared Thoughts Author

Tami Cleckley

Hostess: Monica

Star Rating: 4.5 Stars

Ramona Jackson dropped out of college when she became pregnant. Casting aside her aspirations of becoming a professor and traveling the world, she focuses her energy on raising her daughter, Jazz.

Jazz and Ramona have a close, but somewhat rocky relationship as Jazz observes her mom living a life she doesn't completely accept. Despite the conflicts and turmoil, Jazz decides she is not going to let anything stand in the way of her dreams.

But on the day of Jazz's graduation, a personal tragedy occurs. The tragedy is one of many obstacles thrown in Jazz's way, leaving it up to her to find the strength to fulfill her goals or follow in her mother's footsteps.

June 2020 Book Club Selection

Black Sunday, A Novel

Author: Tola Rotimi

STBC Start Rating: 2 stars

Synopsis of Children of Virtue & Vengeance – Zelie and Amari brought magic back to Orisha. The ritual, however, gave power to the maji and the nobles who possess magic in their blood too. The kingship and armed forces want to keep control of Orisha. Zelie fights to get Amari to her rightful place on the throne and to protect the maji from nobles, while trying to restore peace.

August Book 2019 Club Selection

The Mother of Black Hollywood

Author: Jennifer Lewis

Hostess: Monica

Star Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis of Book:

Jennifer Lewis' memoir provides us with details of her childhood and how she knew she would be a star since the tender age of 5 years old. Jennifer describes lustful affairs, sex addition and discovering she is bi-polar. She delves in to going to therapy and talks about her love for Black people. Jennifer is a trained singer, broadway performer and film and television actress.  

July's 2019 Book Club Selection

Black Girls Must Die

Exhausted

Author: Jayne Allen

Hostess: Andrea

Star Rating: 2 Stars

Book Synopsis:

Tabitha Walker is a Black woman with a thriving career, has money in the bank & is in a relationship with a man. However, she discovers that she might not be able to conceive, and this brings about a lot of stress, that affects every area of her life. Also, she has 2 friends, Laila and Alexis who have problems of their own.

June's 2019 Book Club Selection

and then there was me

Author: Sadeqa Johnson

Hostess: Marilyn

Star Rating: 3.6

BOOK SYNOPSIS:

As a favor to husband’s favorite cousin, Bea has agreed to be a surrogate, although she has an eating disorder that no one knows about, and against her husband’s wishes. Her husband, Lonnie, has cheated on her numerous times, and Bea suspects that he is continuing in his unfaithful pattern. Bea shares with her best friend only to learn of the worst betrayal she could imagine.

May 2019 Book Club Selection

Praise Song for the Butterflies 

Author: Bernice L. McFadden

Hostess: Alethea

Star Rating: 4.5

BOOK SYNOPSIS:

While Praise Songs for the Butterflies is considered a fiction book, it focuses on key elements that are non-fiction in certain parts of Africa. This book was based in a fiction country, Port Masi, in Ukemby Africa. Ukemby is a nation which very little is known; and the Portuguese used Ukemby as a slave trading post for Europe and the Americas until 1807. The main characters in the book were a small family: Wasik (dad), Ismae (mom), Abeo (daughter), Serafine (sister of Ismae) and Grandmother (mother of Wasik). The immediate family was considered well off financially until they experienced a domino effect of setbacks that lead them into financial ruins which caused Wasik to make a decision that his wife, Ismae was totally against, taking Abeo to a shrine to become “Trokosi”. 

April 2019 Book Club Selection

Rabbit:The Autobiography

of Ms. Pat

Author: Patricia Williams

Hostess: Tami

Star Rating: TBD

March 2019 Book Club Selection

Bookstore Chronicles

Books 1, 2 &3

Author: Zyla Turner

Hostess: Shelly

Star Rating: 4.0 Stars

Synopsis- 

Book 1 – Dyna and Kane meet in a bookstore. Their attraction is magnetic. Dyna tries to escape Kane’s strong hold on her, but it appears to be impossible.

Book 2 – The saga of Dyna and Kane’s story continues. Their friends, Tyler and Melanie, become a part of the tale.

Book 3- Melanie & Tyler’s love story is highlighted

February 2019 Book Club Selection

Stalker

Author: Brenda Hampton

Hostess: Krishna

Synopsis: After a brutal divorce, Abigail Wilson vowed to never love again, but when Brent Carson crosses her path, she simply can’t resist his good-guy persona that exemplifies perfection. From A to Z, Brent appears to have it all. Abigail falls head over heels for him—until the unthinkable happens. 

January 2019 Book Club Selection

Illusions

Author: Wanda B. Campbell

Hostess: Tracey

STBC Start Rating: 4.2 Stars

Synopsis: After three years of marriage, Denise Hightower discovers that her husband, Pastor Bryce Hightower, has a secret addiction that not only jeopardizes his marriage, but impairs his ability to effectively preach the gospel.

Yielding to pressure from her mother and her husband, Denise agrees to keep his addiction a secret, although her self-esteem plummets. Her life as the perfect First Lady is falling apart at the seams.

Self-centered and determined to uphold his pastoral image, Bryce is oblivious to his wife’s emotional state. He’s convinced that he can overcome his “little problem” on his own, so he rejects the spiritual help God sends him. But when his secret is discovered, will he be able to come clean with himself, God, and his congregation?

December 2018Book Club Selection

Better Left Unsaid

Author: Sabin Prentis

Hostess: Sabrina

STBC Overall Ratings: 3 Stars

Synopsis of Book: 

Stokely Robeson had just been dumped by a married woman. Another woman quickly shows up, that has stolen his heart. Unbeknownst to Stokely, the two women he love, share something in common, creating quite a triangle.

November 2018

The Banks Sisters

Author: Kim Brooks

Hostess: Larrie

Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 2.5

Synopsis of Book: 

Simone, Bunny, Tallyha and Ginger’s grandmother dies, leaving the house & all her money to the church. The reverend wants them out of the residence immediately, unless they can come up with the money to purchase the house from him. The sisters develop a scheme to rob banks. The plan becomes more messy when their mother arrives on the scene & the pastor doesn’t want to give the house back to them. The Banks sisters have to band together to get what they want.

October 2018

She That Findeth

Author: Kim Brooks

Hostess: Desiree

Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 3 Stars

Synopsis of Book: 

4 friends, Shenita, Jackie, Danielle and Pippa are on a quest to find love while living Christian lifestyles. Faced with everyday challenges and past hurt, they show that true friendship is the bond that helps them though their loneness and pain.

September 2018

The Underground Railroad

Author: Colson Whitehead

Hostess: Monica

Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 4 Stars

Synopsis of Book: 

Story of Cora and Caesar, slaves who escaped their plantation in Georgia, using The Underground Railroad (a real railroad), with the assistance of traveling secret routes and getting help from abolitionists. After reaching freedom, the experiences that they went through will keep you in suspense.

August 2018

Children of Blood and Bone

Author: Tomi Adeyemi

Hostess: Andrea

Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 3.5 Stars

Synopsis of Book: 

Once upon a time in Orisha, born were the white haired babies who were called “Maji” and were gifted with different types of “magic”. When the king suspected the Orishans of killing his family, he ordered anyone with the power of “Maji”, to be killed. He allowed the babies to live since their “Maji” can only be birth after they turn 13 and will need the 3 special artifacts to bring the magic out, which he possessed one of, the MAP . This fairy tale follows the family of Zelie, who was left motherless after the “Raid”. Zelie was approached by the Kings daughter, Amarie, the Princess, after she stole the “MAP” from the palace and ventured off to bring magic back. Between Zelia, Amarie and Zelie’s brother, Tzaine, the scavenger hunt is one to find the other 2 artifacts to bring magic back to all of the Maji’s.

July 2018

Like a Fly on the Wall

Author: Simone Kelly

Hostess: Shelly

Overall Rating: 4 Stars 

Synopsis of Book:

Jacques Berradi likes to call himself and "Intuitive Counselor", because he has the ability to communicate with spirits & pick up on people’s energy, and is making quite a good penny at it. However, Jacques’ skill doesn’t give him the answer as to why he is starting to have dark dreams about his father.

Kylie Collins and Jacques are brought together by accident. Seeking to find out more about her family, she visits Jacques, one night when a black-out occurs. She is unemployed, but that night, she becomes employed by Like A Fly On The Wall detective agency… Jacques intuition can help Kylie uncover the secrets of her parents, and Kylie’s detective skills can assist Jacque’s into discovering what happened to his father.

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