February’s Bestselling African American Paperbacks

February 2012’s top-selling African American books in paperback.

  1. Guilty Gucci by Ashley Antoinette
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)

     

  2. Health First!: The Black Woman’s Wellness Guide by Eleanor Hinton Hoytt
    (SmileyBooks, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    The story of Black women in America is one of triumph and grace, even with odds stacked high against them. Health First! The Black Woman’s Wellness Guide provides you with a comprehensive guide to your #1 resource: yourself. Today, as Black women face an unprecedented health crisis, denial and self-neglect are no longer viable options. This groundbreaking volume is rooted in the pioneering work of the Black Women’s Health Imperative, the nation’s only nonprofit organization devoted to advancing the health and wellness of Black women and girls. It offers a core health philosophy—too long denied Black women—based on putting your health first. Health First! explores Black women’s most critical health challenges, connecting the dots through honest discussions with experts and the uncensored stories of real women—from adolescence through  elderhood. The focus is on prevention and awareness, across generations and circumstances—from candid conversations about reproductive health and HIV/AIDS to frank explorations of Black women’s Top 10 Health Risks, including cancer, obesity, and violence. No matter what your age or health status, this unprecedented health reference will become a trusted ally as you seek accessible and relevant information to help you navigate your most pressing health needs. In an age of uncertainty, it’s time to take control and truly discover the vitality, power, and joy that can be yours when you learn how to put your health first.

     

  3. Baby Momma by Ni’chelle Genovese
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    Welcome to the fast paced high stakes world of Rasheed an anti-hero you’ll love to hate much like Scarface. Caught up in a game of fast money, faster women, and a hustler’s dream, Rasheed’s secrets and lies threaten to completely sever his alliance with his baby’s mother Michelle. Trapped in an emotional whirlwind of sex, love, and mistrust, Michelle attempts to hold the threads of their lives together. With the passing of each day their bond unravels further forcing Michelle closer to confronting the reality which is her life or suffering in silence. A cautionary tale for all “Baby Mommas” filled with tragedy,irony,violence and betrayal.

     

  4. Black Cool: One Thousand Streams of Blackness
    (Soft Skull Press, 2012-02-07, Paperback)
    Black Cool explores the ineffable state and aesthetic of Black Cool. From the effortless reserve of Miles Davis in khakis on an early album cover, to the shock of resistance in black women’s fashion from Angela Davis to Rihanna, to the cadence of poets as diverse as Staceyann Chin and Audre Lorde, Black Cool looks at the roots of Black Cool and attempts to name elements of the phenomena that have emerged to shape the global expectation of cool itself.Buoyed by some of America’s most innovative thinkers on the subject — graphic novelist Mat Johnson, Brown University Professor of African Studies Tricia Rose, critical thinking and cultural icon bell hooks, Macarthur winner Kara Walker, and many more — the book is at once a handbook, a map, a journey into the matrix of another cosmology. It’s a literal periodic table of cool, wherein each writer names and defines their element of choice. Dream Hampton writes about Audacity. Helena Andrews about Reserve, Margo Jefferson on Eccentricity, Veronica Chambers on Genius, and so on. With a foreword by Henry Louis Gates that bridges historical African elements of cool with the path laid out for the future, Black Cool offers a provocative perspective on this powerful cultural legacy.

     

  5. What Kind of Fool by Rhonda McKnight
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    Secrets and lies from the past intricately tie two couples together, but threatens to tear their relationships apart.  

     

  6. The Stalker Chronicles by Electa Rome Parks
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    She’s back, and this time it’s all about revenge.Tall, dark, and handsome bestselling male author Xavier Preston thought his nightmare–in the form of Pilar, a fanatical stalker/fan–had finally ended. Little does he know it’s only beginning. When Xavier met Pilar, he got much more than he bargained for. What started out as an erotic one-night stand quickly turned into a dangerous game of obsession and pain, with both parties playing to win. Then she simply disappeared.Stunning Pilar hasn’t gone away, though. In fact, she has been very near, watching his every move and patiently waiting for him to realize they were meant to be together forever. She still believes they’re soul mates, and the only option for her is “Until death do us part.” If she can’t have Xavier, then no one can. Now no one is safe–not his friends, and definitely not him. Revenge can be a real killer.

     

  7. Hard Candy 2: Secrets Uncovered by Amaleka McCall
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)

     

  8. With Just One Kiss (Grayson Friends) by Francis Ray
    (St. Martin’s Paperbacks, 2012-02-28, Mass Market Paperback)
    IT’S NEVER TOO LATECicely St. John is not impressed by her friend C.J. Callahan’s so-called passion in life: running a New York City bar that he inherited from his uncle. So why can’t Cicely stop thinking about the dance they shared at their mutual friend’s wedding-or the mutual attraction she felt in C.J.’s arms?TO GIVE LOVE A CHANCEAs far as C.J. is concerned, Cicely is a snob whose “passion” in life-writing for fashion magazines-is as pretentious as she is. So why can’t he keep his eyes off her? C.J. has a business to run. And Cicely has a job opportunity in Paris. Neither of them even has time to think about romance right now. But maybe, just once, the two could test their friendship…with just one kiss.

     

  9. When Solomon Sings by Kendra Norman-Bellamy
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)

     

  10. Black Friday: Exposed by Ashley and JaQuavis
    (Urban Books, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    All it takes is one murder to change a million lives, and that’s exactly what happens to Kasheef Williams on a cold, black Friday. After a reunion with an old friend goes wrong in a Long Island night club, Kasheef is forced to protect himself by any means necessary. The only problem is that prying eyes see everything. Those eyes belong to Alija Bell. After walking in on a situation she was never meant to see, she runs; but Kasheef sees her face, and he tells her that it’s best for her to get temporary amnesia. Afraid for her life and the safety of her daughter, she keeps her mouth shut, but when a tape of the murder surfaces, the only face that’s visible is Alijas. Now the police are looking for their eyewitness, and Kasheef has to get to Alija before her day comes to testify against him in court. In this dramatic, hood savvy tale, things aren’t always as they seem. Somebody holds the ticket to the jury’s verdict. Lies and truth collide. Everyone has a different angle, but the only question is, who has the most influence over Kasheef’s fate?

     

  11. The Cameo Necklace: A Cecile Mystery (American Girl) (American Girl Mysteries) by Evelyn Coleman
    (Amer Girl, 2012-02-28, Paperback)
    As Cécile exits a crowded showboat after enjoying a lavish Floating Circus, she stumbles–and when she gets up, she realizes that the cameo necklace she borrowed from her aunt is no longer on her neck. Knowing that the necklace was the last gift Tante Tay’s husband gave her before he died, Cécile is desperate to find it. As she tracks down the people in the crowd who were near her when she fell, her search takes her into many corners of New Orleans, from a society tea party to the crowded French Market, even the dangerous cypress swamps…and deep into secrets she never imagined! An illustrated Looking Back essay provides facts about the 1850s.

     

  12. Mama Ruby by Mary Monroe
    (Dafina, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    New York Times bestselling author Mary Monroe presents an unforgettable tale featuring Mama Ruby, the indomitable heroine of her acclaimed novel The Upper Room. Now readers will get a peek into Ruby’s early years, as she transforms from a spoiled small-town girl into one of the South’s most notorious and volatile women…Growing up in Shreveport, Louisiana, Ruby Jean Upshaw is the kind of girl who knows what she wants and knows how to get it. By the time she’s fifteen, Ruby has developed a taste for fast men and cheap liquor, and not even her preacher daddy can set her straight. Most everyone in the neighborhood knows you don’t cross Ruby. Only Othella Mae Cartier, daughter of the town tramp, understands what makes Ruby tick. When Ruby discovers she’s in the family way, she’s scared for the first time in her life. After hiding her growing belly with baggy dresses, Ruby secretly gives birth to a baby girl at Othella’s house. With few choices, Othella talks Ruby into giving the child away-and with the help of a shocking revelation, convinces Ruby to run off with her to New Orleans. But nothing can erase Ruby’s memories of the child she lost-or quell her simmering rage at Othella for persuading her to let her precious baby go. If there’s a fine line between best friend and worst nightmare, Ruby is surely treading it. Because someday, there will be a reckoning. And when it comes, Othella will learn the hard way that no one knows how to exact revenge quite like Ruby Jean Upshaw…

     

  13. Coming Home: A Novel (Winds of Change) by Stacy Hawkins Adams
    (Zondervan, 2012-02-13, Paperback)
    If forgiving your ex-husband was easy, everybody would do it. Brent had cheated on Dayna and coldly said goodbye to her seven long years ago—dashing her hopes of having children or growing old with the love of her life. Working hard to make herself successful as a hospital executive, Dayna has moved on, finding comfort in a new dating relationship with a faith-filled colleague, Warren. But when Brent resurfaces on her doorstep at just the wrong time, Dayna’s heart threatens to come unglued. Why is Brent asking for forgiveness now? And why are he and his new wife, Tamara, interested in reconciliation with Dayna? The unbelievable answers in Coming Home begin to surface as Brent boldly asks Dayna to support him at the most crucial time of his life. While Tamara’s heart brims with guilt, both women will discover what it means to reach beyond pain and baggage to love unconditionally, leaving the consequences to God.

     

  14. Keeping Secrets & Telling Lies by Trice Hickman
    (Dafina, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    What would you do if the secret you were keeping could set you free, yet ultimately devastate the ones you love?………After six years of marriage, Victoria and Ted are the ultimate power couple. She’s a beautiful, business savvy sister who owns one of Atlanta’s most sought after event planning companies. He’s a powerful, blue-eyed CEO who knows how to take care of business in and out of the boardroom. But their seemingly happy life begins to unravel in the blink of an eye when long held desires and decades old secrets come back to haunt them. Victoria’s road to deceit begins when Parker Brightwood re-enters her life. She thought she’d gotten over the brazenly handsome surgeon who once stole her heart, but an unusual set of circumstances ushers the ebony prince back on the scene, and this time he’s determined to win her back at any cost. Ted’s undoing begins with his mother’s sudden death, and a mysterious secret that leads to unexpected places. When the truth is finally revealed, it’s a realization so shocking, it threatens the life and marriage he holds so dear. As Victoria and Ted journey down a road filled with uncertainty, they’re forced to take a hard, honest look at themselves and confront their hidden fears. Can they repair the damage before it’s too late, or will they follow a path headed toward destruction?

     

  15. Sweet Southern Nights (Kimani Romance) by Rochelle Alers
    (Kimani, 2012-02-21, Mass Market Paperback)
    Sweet Southern Nights

     

  16. Diamond Life: A Novel by Aliya S King
    (Touchstone, 2012-02-07, Paperback)
    BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR . . . Set in the highest ranks of the music industry’s fame machine, Diamond Life is an intoxicating story of love, sex, ambition, money, betrayal, and the surprising realities of making it big. Alex Maxwell’s career as a journalist and celebrity ghost writer is taking off, despite the slightly embarrassing authorship of hip-hop super-groupie Cleo Wright’s memoir. And while Alex’s star is on the rise, it pales in comparison to her husband Birdie’s multiplatinum debut and world tour. Slowly but surely, everything they swore would never happen begins to come true, like leaving Brooklyn for a mansion in suburban Jersey and letting a reality TV crew into their home. Birdie is confronted time and again by the sexy groupies who pursue famous rappers like heat-seeking missiles and he’s forced to make some life-changing choices. Meanwhile, aging rapper Z, in recovery from drug addiction, is too busy trying to repair his marriage to leave much time for his son Zander, newly signed to Z’s label and struggling to maintain his appeal in the wake of a domestic violence scandal with his diva girlfriend Bunny. Record label president Jake is trying to deal with the death of his wife, multiplatinum R&B artist Kipenzi Hill, by drowning his sorrows in alcohol and women. When he meets Lily, a beautiful, quiet waitress, he can’t get her out of his head. But Lily has her own problems to handle and she wants nothing to do with the fame, drama, and baggage that Jake carries with him. This juicy follow-up to Aliya S. King’s Platinum is a scintillating roman à clef that takes readers behind the curtain once again for the real scoop on the biggest players in the hip-hop game—and the first ladies who hold them together.

     

  17. I Must Resist: Bayard Rustin’s Life in Letters by Bayard Rustin
    (City Lights Publishers, 2012-02-28, Paperback)
    Published on the centennial of his birth, and in anticipation of the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington, here is Bayard Rustin’s life story told in his own words. Bayard Rustin has been called the “lost prophet” of the civil rights movement. A master strategist and tireless activist, he is best remembered as the organizer of the 1963 March on Washington, one of the largest nonviolent protests ever held in the U.S. He brought Gandhi’s protest techniques to the American civil rights movement and played a deeply influential role in the life of Martin Luther King, Jr., helping to mold him into an international symbol of nonviolence. Despite these achievements, Rustin often remained in the background. He was silenced, threatened, arrested, beaten, imprisoned and fired from important leadership positions, largely because he was an openly gay man in a fiercely homophobic era. Here we have Rustin in his own words in a collection of over 150 of his letters; his correspondents include the major progressives of his day — for example, Eleanor Holmes Norton, A. Philip Randolph, Roy Wilkins, Ella Baker, and of course, Martin Luther King, Jr.Bayard Rustin’s eloquent, impassioned voice, his ability to chart the path “from protest to politics,” is both timely and deeply informative. As the Occupy movement ushers America into a pivotal election year, and as politicians and citizens re-assess their goals and strategies, these letters provide direct access to the strategic thinking and tactical planning that led to the successes of one of America’s most transformative and historic social movements.

     

  18. Trust in Black America: Race, Discrimination, and Politics by Shayla Nunnally
    (NYU Press, 2012-02-01, Paperback)
    The more citizens trust their government, the better democracy functions. However, African Americans have long suffered from the lack of protection by their government, and the racial discrimination they have faced breaks down their trust in democracy. Rather than promoting democracy, the United States government has, from its inception, racially discriminated against African American citizens and other racial groups, denying them equal access to citizenship and to protection of the law. Civil rights violations by ordinary citizens have also tainted social relationships between racial groupsosocial relationships that should be meaningful for enhancing relations between citizens and the government at large. Thus, trust and democracy do not function in American politics in the way that they should, in large part because trust is not colour blind. Based on the premise that racial discrimination breaks down trust in a democracy, Trust in Black America examines the effect of race on African Americans’ lives. Shayla Nunnally analyzes public opinion data from two national surveys to provide an updated and contemporary analysis of African Americans’ political socialization, and to explore how African Americans learn about race. She argues that the uncertainty, risk, and unfairness of institutionalized racial discrimination has led African Americans to have a fundamentally different understanding of American race relations, so much so that distrust has been the basis for which race relations have been understood by African Americans. Nunnally empirically demonstrates that race and racial discrimination have broken down trust in American democracy. Shayla C. Nu nnally is Assistant Professor with a joint appointment in Political Science and African American Studies at the University of Connecticut.

     

  19. Cheaper to Keep Her part 3 (More Money More Problems) by Kiki Swinson presents Unique
    (K.S. Publications, 2012-02-28, Paperback)

     

  20. Fast Animal by Tim Seibles
    (Etruscan Press, 2012-02-07, Paperback)
    This collection by African American poet Tim Seibles explores a range of poetic form, including lyric, ode, narrative, and mystical. Like a “fast animal,” the poet’s voice can swiftly change direction and tone as he crisscrosses between present and past. Tim Seibles, who teaches at Old Dominion University, is the author of six previous books, including Body Moves and Hurdy-Gurdy. His poetry has been featured in Best American Poetry 2010. Seibles has been the recipient of an NEA grant for poetry and Open Voice award.

     

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