Shared Thoughts Book Club

"Share Your Thoughts"

********* Shared Thoughts Book Club 5 Star Rating *********


* 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 


November's Book Club Selection


More Myself a Journey


By Alicia Keys


Hostess: Tracey


STBC Rating: TBD

October's Book Club Selection


The Mothers


By Brit Bennett


Hostess: Sabrina


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 od 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



Star Rating: 3 Stars


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.


June 2018


Scattered Pieces 


Author: Nannette Buchanan


Hostess: Marilyn


Shared Thoughts Overall Ratings:  2.75 Stars



Synopsis of Book: 

Janet Robinson’s husband has left her with 3 children to raise. With no marketable skills, she is tired of being rejected from job after job.  Feeling alone in the world, Janet finds herself hospitalized after she swallows some pills. As she tries to pick up the scattered pieces to her life, with a new job and a new man, she seeks therapy, to attempt to heal herself.




May 2018


An American Marriage


Author: Tayari Jones


Hostess: Alethea


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 4.75 Stars


Synopsis:    Celestial and Roy, newly married, and before you know it, Roy is convicted of a crime he didn’t commit. Thus, begins Celestial’s and Roy’s journey to see if love can stand the test of time.

April 2018


Stay With Me


Author: Ayobami Adebayo


Hostess: Tami


Shared Thoughts Overall Ratings:  4.5 Stars


Synopsis of Book: 


Yejide has married the love of her life, Akin. But she cannot seem to get pregnant. Years into her marriage, Akin takes a second wife from pressure of his family. Yejide feels threatened, and wants to conceive badly. She consults fertility doctors, drinks strange teas, perform weird rituals. Akin is hiding a secret from Yejide. He seeks his brother’s help in getting Yejide pregnant. The ramifications of Yejide & Akin’s brother illicit act bring about enormous consequences. 

March 2018


Born a Crime


Author: Trevor Noah

Hostess: Sabrina 


Meeting: H2Ocean Restaurant, Cedar Knolls, NJ


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars


Synopsis of Book:


Trevor Noah's narration of his childhood as a 'Colored' child in his native South Africa.

February 2018


Higher is Waiting


Author: Tyler Perry

Hostess: Larrie


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 3.2 Stars


Synopsis of Higher is Waiting


Tyler Perry’s spiritual guide on how to live a better life.  

A collection of examples from his life experiences followed by "gems' and bible scriptures.


Happy New Year


January 2018


The Perfect Find

Hostess: Desiree

Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 2.75 Stars


Synopsis of The Perfect Find – 

Hot romance of Jenna, who is in her 40’s and falls for Eric, a young man in his 20’s.   

December 2017


A Lesson Before Dying


Hostess: Monica


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating:  4.5 Stars


Synopsis of A Lesson Before Dying: 1940s. Louisiana. Jefferson, a young, uneducated Black man, is about to go to the electric chair for murder, though Jefferson did not kill the white man, nor had he been armed. Grant Wiggins, a teacher, has been asked by Miss. Emma, to teach Jefferson how to die like a man. As Grant attempts to teach Jefferson to have pride, the pair embark on an unforgettable journey.




November 2017


Beyond the Messy Truth


Hostess: Andrea


Shared Thoughts Overall Ratings: 3.0 Stars


Synopsis for Beyond A Messy Truth – Van Jones book deals with the hypocrisy of political parties & attempts to come up with solutions that would unite us & make America better.


October 2017


Nappily Ever After


Hostess - Alethea


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating - 3.0 Stars


Synopsis for Nappily Ever After: Venus Johnston chops off her long, pretty hair, after her boyfriend comes home with a puppy as a gift instead of an engagement ring. This bold act of independence, has her questioning what she wants out of life, and coming to terms with what truly makes her happy.   

September 2017


Damsels In Distress 


by Nikita Lynette Nichols


Hostess - Marilyn


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating : 3 Stars


Synopsis:


3 Women & their problems. Celeste, unable to have a baby, keeps a secret from her adoring husband. Ginger, abused woman who finds a man who adores her but has trouble accepting love. Portia, always involved with married men, even gets her behind beat by man when she messes around & leaves details letting wife know of their affair.   



August 2017


The Hate U Give


By Angie Thomas


Hostess - Shelly


Shared Thoughts Overall Rating: 4 Stars


Starr Carter, 16 years old, sees her childhood friend, Khalil get killed by a cop. He was unarmed. His death draws a lot of media attention. Khalil is being labeled a thug and a drug dealer as if he deserved his death. The only person who can shed some light on what really happened that night is Starr, who is too afraid to speak out. Finally, Starr realizes that to be silent in our society, is to give consent to the way minorities are being treated. She learns that through our voices we can stand a stand. Being quiet doesn’t make changes. It is with our voices that  The Black Lives Matter movement is formed.

July 2017


The Ex-Chronicles 


Hostess - Tami


STBC Overall Rating 2.5 Stars


This was a book of short stories with one thing in common..."EX's"


Relationships that do not last have one thing in common, they all end up with Ex's.....no matter what type of break-up it is!

June 2017 - Hostess - Sabrina

Shared Thoughts Overall Rating - ***5 Stars***



Jende Jonga, his wife, Neni and their son are immigrants from Cameroon, Africa, who recently migrated to Harlem, NY. When Jenda lands a position as a driver for the rich Mr. Clark Edwards, his luck starts to change with a decent salary that affords him the luxury to be able to take care of his family & send money home to his kin in need. Jenda & his employer become close, and during rides, Jenda can hear some of the things going on in his boss’s life. His wife, Neni, also lucks up & works for his boss’s wife for a while. However, things start to unravel & their American dream begins to fizzle.

Past Book Club Selections

2011
  • January                     Don't Ever Tell                                   Brandon Massey
  • February                   Chocolate Sangria                              Tracie Price-Thompson
  • March                       32 Candles                                          Ernessa T. Carter
  • April                         Shades of Justice                                 Linda McKeever Bullard
  • May                          Wench                                                 Dolen Perkins-Valdez
  • June                           So You Call Yourself a Man              Carl Weber
  • August                      God Ain't Blind                                  Mary Monroe
  • September                 Silver Sparrow                                   Tayari Jones
  • October                     Why We Can't Wait                            Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • November                 Redeeming Waters                             Vanessa Davis Griggs
  • December                 The Last Days of Plolemy Grey         Walter Mosley

2010
  • January                     Manhood: The Longest Moan             L.M. Ross
  • February                   Too Good To Be True                          E. Lynn Harris
  • March                       What Mother Never Told Me              Donna Hill
  • May                          You, Me and He                                   Brooke Greene
  • June                           Can I Get A Witness                           Reshonda Tate Billingsley
  • August                      No More Tomorrows                           Rodney Lofton
  • September                 Purple Hibiscus                                   Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • October                     Gone Too Far                                       Angie Winters
  • November                 A Hungry Heart :A Memoir                Gordon Parks
  • December                  Perfect Piece                                       Daniel Black

2009
  • January                       Not With My Son                              Hope C. Clarke
  • February                     The Game                                          Tim Williams
  • March                         Midnight                                            Sistah Souljah
  • April                           Preacher Man Blues                          Jihad
  • May                            Wild Cherry                                       Jihad
  • June                            Gotta Keep on Tryin'                         Virginia DeBerry & Donna Grant
  • July                             A Private Affair                                 Donna Hill
  • August                        A Different Kind of Love                  Nanette Buchanan (STBC Author)
  • September                  Laying Down My Burdens                Brenda L. Thomas
  • October                      Betrayal                                              Tami Cleckley (STBC Author, Secretary)
  • December                  The Women Who Raised Me              Victoria Rowell

2008
  • January                      Walking With Strangers                      Eric Jerome Dickey
  • March                        Color Me Butterfly                              L.Y. Rawlings
  • April                          Sleeping With Strangers                      Eric Jerome Dickey
  • May                           Pleasure                                               Eric Jerome Dickey
  • June                           Brotherman                                         Various Authors/Short Stories
  • July                            Secret Sisterhood                                Monique Miller
  • August                       Something on the Side                        Carl Weber
  • September                 Family...Secret, Lies & Alibi's            Nanette Buchanan
  • November                 Divas, Inc.                                           Donna Hill
  • December                  Zora and Nicky                                   Claudia Mair Berner

2007
  • January                     Chasing Destiny                                  Eric Jerome Dickey
  • February                   What's Done in the Dark                     Gloria Mallette
  • March                       If You Want Closure ......                    Big Boom
  • April                         Tru Lies                                              Margaret Hodge-Johnson
  • May                          Within The Shadows                           Brandon Massey
  • June                          Chasing Faith                                       Stephanie Perry Moore
  • July                          Sister Betty! God's Calling...               Pat G'orge Walker
  • August                     The Preacher's Son                               Carl Weber
  • September                The Bitten                                             L.A. Banks
  • October                     First Lady                                             Carl Weber
  • November                 Gumbo                                                  Various Authors/Short Stories
  • December                 Gumbo                                                   Various Authors/Short Stories

2006
  • January          Million Dollar Divorce                    R.M. Johnson
  • February        Good to Me                                      Latonya Mason
  • March            My Brother's Keeper                       Reshonda Tate Billingsley
  • April              Changing Faces                               Kimberly Lawson Roby
  • June               Sex.Lies.Murder.Fame                    Lolita Files
  • August           Getting Hers                                    Donna Hill
  • November      Piece of Cake                                  Cupcake Brown
  • December      One Prayer Away                            Kendra Norman Bellamy

2005
  • January          (1) Sugar, (2) This Bitter Earth          Bernice McFadden
  • February        Drive Me Crazy                                 Eric Jerome Dickey
  • March            A Long Way Home                            Connie Briscoe
  • April              Harlem Girl Lost                                Treasure E. Hunt
  • May               Somebody's Gotta Be On Top            Mary B. Morrison
  • June               Distant Lover                                     Gloria Mallette
  • July               The Velvet Rope                                 Brenda L. Thomas
  • August           Use Me or Lose Me                           Maryann Reid
  • September     Temptation                                         Victoria Christopher Murray
  • October         Secrets Never Told                             Rochelle Ayers
  • November     Better Than I know Myself                Virginia DeBerry and Donna Grant
  • December      Other Men's Wives                             Freddie Lee Johnson

2004
  • February       Dangerous Dilemmas                          Evelyn Palfrey
  • March           Love, Life & Loneliness                     Crystal Lacey Winslow
  • April             Some Thing I Thought I'd Never Do  Pearl Cleage
  • May              My Soul To Keep                                Tananarive Due
  • June              What You Owe Me                              BeBe Moore Campbell
  • July               Never Tell                                            Selena Montgomery
  • August          Cane River                                           Lalita Tademy
  • September    The Dew Breakers                                Edwidge Danticat
  • October        The Criss Cross                                    Crystal Lacey Winslow
  • November.    5 Dimes                                                Darrious Hilmon                   

2003
  • May              Child of God                                      Lolita Files
  • June              The Other Woman                             Eric Jerome Dickey
  • July               Crawfish Dreams                              Nancy Rawls
  • September     Sexual Healing                                 Jill Nelson
  • October         Never Again, Once More                 Mary B. Morrison

2002
  • January          Window Pain                                  Steve Perry
  • February.       Pipe Dreams                                   Solomon Jones
  • March            Trocadero                                       Douglas McIntosh

2001
  • January         Casting the First Stone                    Kimberla Lawson-Roby
  • February       A Day Late A Dollar Short             Terri McMillan
  • March           Getting to the Good Part                 Lotita Files
  • April             Warm Hands                                    Margaret Johnson Hodge
  • May              The Great Investment                      T. D. Jakes
  • June              Addicted                                           Zane
  • July               SoulMate Dissipate                          Mary B. Morrison
  • September    God Don't Like Ugly                        Mary Monroe
  • October        Reinventing the Woman                   Patti Rice
  • November    The Reinventing of Hip Hop           Bertice Berry



2000
  • April               The Coldest Winter Ever                Sister Souljah
  • May                Here and Now                                Kimberly Lawson-Roby
  • June                Men Cry in the Day                       Michael Baisden
  • August            In Search of Satisfaction                J. California Cooper
  • September      Tapping the Power Within              Iyanla Vanzant
  • October          Shades of Jade                                Gloria Mallet
  • December      Ain't Nobody's Business if I Do     Valerie Wilson Wesley





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