Boston Public Library
Black Is... 1995: Personalities
Booklists for Adults

CHASED: ALONE, BLACK AND UNDERCOVER. Billy Chase & Lennie Grimaldi.
An undercover black cop infiltrates the mob. Successfully.

*COLORED PEOPLE. Henry Louis Gates.
A warm-hearted account of family and community life in the days when folks were colored.

CONVERSATIONS WITH AMIRI BARAKA. Charlie Reilly, editor.
These interviews provide special insights into Baraka's works, his anger, and his career.

DANCING SPIRIT: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY. Judith Jamison.
The movements of a sophisticated lady.

DAUGHTERS: ON FAMILY AND FATHERHOOD. Gerald Early.
A college professor shares his experiences of raising his daughters in a predominantly white community.

*DON'T LOOK BACK: SATCHEL PAIGE IN THE SHADOWS OF BASEBALL. Mark Ribowsky.
The unvarnished version of Paige's phenomenal, two-decade career in the Negro Leagues, then as the first black pitcher in the American League.

FATHERALONG: A MEDITATION ON FATHERS AND SONS, RACE AND SOCIETY. John Edgar Wideman.
"Because we don't talk, or can't talk, father to son, each generation approaches the task of becoming men as if no work has been accomplished before."

FORTY-THREE SEPTEMBERS. Jewelle Gomez.
Gomez's essays describe her experiences as a black lesbian today.

HARD STUFF: THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF COLEMAN YOUNG. Coleman Young.
The Tuskeegee airman, labor union activist and five-time mayor of Detroit tells it like it is.

I'VE KNOWN RIVERS: LIVES OF LOSS AND LIBERATION. Sara Lawrence Lightfoot.
Six prominent professionals at mid-life recount their lives thus far.

JAMES BALDWIN: A BIOGRAPHY. David Leeming.
The landscapes of Baldwin's inner conflicts as sources for his art and politics.

*JORDAN: THE MAN, HIS WORDS, HIS LIFE. Mitchell Krugel.
One-on-one overview of the "retired" basketball star's career.

JOSEPHINE: THE HUNGRY HEART. Jean Claude Baker & Chis Chase.
"The Eiffel tower of music hall revues, cabaret, and film."

LAUGHING IN THE DARK: FROM COLORED GIRL TO WOMAN OF COLOR--A JOURNEY FROM PRISON TO POWER. Patrice Gaines.
An award-winning reporter describes her transformation from drug addict to successful professional.

LOVING'S LOVE: A BLACK AMERICAN'S EXPERIENCE IN AVIATION. Neal Loving.
Nothing would stop him, not racism, not the loss of both his legs.

MAKES ME WANNA HOLLER. Nathan McCall.
At 19 he was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Today he is a reporter for the "Washington Post."

*MUHAMMED ALI: A THIRTY YEAR JOURNEY. Howard L. Bingham.
Two hundred engrossing black and white photographs of the "Greatest."

NELLA LARSEN: NOVELIST OF THE HARLEM RENAISSANCE. Thadious Davis.
Life story of this nurse, librarian, novelist and Harlem socialite.

PARALLEL TIME: GROWING UP IN BLACK AND WHITE. Brent Staples.
Two brothers. One earned a Ph.D.; the other used to be a drug dealer until he was shot six times. How? Why?

PUSHED BACK TO STRENGTH: A BLACK WOMAN'S JOURNEY HOME. Gloria Jean Wade-Gayles.
Thanks to her family, nuclear and extended, she had the sustenance necessary for the journey.

QUEEN BESS: DAREDEVEL AVIATOR. Doris Rich.
Licensed as a pilot before Amelia Earhart she broke free of race, sex, and society.

*SHAQ ATTAQ! Shaquille O'Neal with Jack McCallum.
A "no-holds-barred account," by one of basketball's most talented new players, of his boyhood and rise to NBA stardom.

*STRANGER TO THE GAME. Bob Gibson.
Bob Gibson "pitches a memoir that is hard and inside."

THE SWEETER THE JUICE. Shirlee Taylor Haizlip.
The actual and psychological search to locate and reconnect with those family members who chose to pass.

TURKEY STEARNES AND THE DETROIT STARS: THE NEGRO LEAGUES IN DETROIT, 1919-1933. Richard Bak.
A world class long-ball hitter and his winning team--a story of skill, pride and perserverance.

*VOICES AND SILENCES. James Earl Jones & Penelope Niven.
The transformation from being a mute and a stutterer to leading roles on stage and screen.

"WHY SHOULD WHITE GUYS HAVE ALL THE FUN?" HOW REGINALD LEWIS CREATED A BILLION DOLLAR EMPIRE. Reginald Lewis & Blair S. Walker.
Determination, hard work, and the good life.

*Recommended for Teens

This selected list was compiled by: Moonyean Carlton, General Library Reader and Information Services; Catherine Clancy, General Library Teen Services; Marylou Coveney, South End Branch; Sara Markell, Codman Square Branch.   Winsome Hudson, Brighton Branch, Committee Chairperson.