With the flowers in bloom and the warmer temperatures, you can pretty much figure out Spring has Sprung! Woo Hoo--it's about damn time, huh!? And let's not forget, it's a brand new month and we always start our new months off right--you already know how we do! It's AAMBC time and we've got a great selection of novels for you to sink your eyes into. So take a few minutes to relax, perhaps get you a nice glass of iced tea or that much needed glass of wine, grab your eReaders, get those downloading fingers ready to depress and let's go. . .
Chase Harper is sexy, intelligent, a style icon, and one of the most popular artists on the Pop/R&B scene. He’s also the object of all his female fans’ desires, but one in particular will go to great lengths for her desires to be met.
As his Number One Fan, nothing will stop Kennedy Hightower from being with her idol. A self-proclaimed loner with overwhelming relationship problems, Kennedy looks to her favorite star to fill a void in her life. Her admiration for Chase becomes extreme when it turns into excessive adulation and infatuation, leaving Chase wondering if he should fear for his life.
Will Kennedy’s wish to be with Chase become fulfilled or will Chase bring Kennedy back to reality?
A few months have passed and the New Year has approached with Kennedy’s heart becoming just as cold as the January weather she’s dealing with. Chase is at the last leg of his tour in Japan and he still hasn’t contact her, yet he makes time to update posts with tourist attractions on social media. Kennedy has already become impatient and really disappointed at Chase’s lack of communication with her. She’s also hurt, but oddly enough…she still very much cares for him.
Snacking on a bowl of popcorn in her living room, she waits for a movie to come on cable and while she waits, she decides to scroll her Instagram. She almost chokes on her popcorn when she sees a picture of Chase and a strikingly beautiful woman of both African and Japanese decent with the caption “my future”. Knocking her popcorn from her lap onto the floor, Kennedy lets out a deep gasp and her disappointment in Chase intensifies as she lets out an uncontrollable scream. Her eyes are welling with tears while fixated on the heart-breaking image of Chase hugging the beautiful woman from behind and sealing a kiss on her cheek. Sobbing from sadness and anger echoes throughout Kennedy’s apartment, as her heart breaks into a million pieces. She didn’t expect to see anything like that at all, considering she thought Chase was in love with her.
“How could he?” she utters, completely distraught by what she sees on her cell phone.
Kennedy is not only upset but baffled, as she wonders who the mystery woman is. As far as she knows, Chase is single and he never appeared to be tied down with anyone. Seeing the photo on Chase’s Instagram is like a punch to the gut. However, it doesn’t take away her belief that Chase belongs to her. Kennedy now realizes she has competition with this woman, who she needs to make disappear….one way or another.
With four books under her belt, Author Lakia Nichole continues to embark on this literary journey with gratefulness. She still considers herself relatively new to this highly competitive business, but dubs her works as “page turners”. Lakia’s novels are a certain breed of literary material with an “out of this world” imagination that she incorporates in her story lines.
GET TO KNOW THE AUTHOR:
1) What is Number One Fan about? Number One Fan is about a young woman who becomes extremely obsessed with her favorite celebrity. The book also touches on what is called Celebrity Worship Syndrome. A lot of people suffer from this and don’t even realize it. My character Kennedy is the perfect example of a person with CWS but on a more extreme level. People who suffers from this are typically people who struggles with relationships in their lives, so they look to celebrities they admire to fill a void. Kennedy struggles socially as well as in relationships, particularly with men. I’m really excited about the release of the book. It’ll shed light on a real life issue, but it’s also a sexy thriller, full of drama, suspense, and it’ll definitely keep you on the edge of your seat page by page.
2) Do you write one particular genre? I want to say Urban Contemporary. My style of writing is not too “project” but it’s not too “suburbs”either. I really want to say it’s somewhere in between. I’m always up for writing any genre, but I have to be in the mood to do so. My third book is a non-fiction about my life, but I don’t plan to write another non-fiction for a long time, if at all. My true passion is fiction/Urban Contemporary.
3) What is the name of your publishing company and what does it mean? It’s New Breed Publishing. It means to originate; to make new or improved and to develop a unique style. I incorporate originality into my story lines, and I expect my fiction authors to do the same. In such a competitive business where duplication is evident, New Breed Publishing strives to not recycle the story lines that we often read.
4) What are the names of your other books? My first book is titled “Hidden Confessions. My second book is the sequel to “Hidden Confessions” and it’s titled “Unveiled”. I am re-releasing them this year, so expect a new look, new content, and better editing/formatting with those. My third book is “Unbroken”, the book I spoke of earlier. It chronicles my experience in dealing with child loss, lack of self-love, financial/business failure, and rising above the pain from them all.
5) Who are your favorite authors? I will forever love “Coldest Winter Ever” by Sistah Souljah. When I first read that book, I didn’t expect the impact it had on me. CWE is one of those books that you’ll never forget, because the story line was so real and raw. She inspired me to write stories that will impact my readers just the same. Danielle Steele kinda set the foundation of why I wanted to become an author. Her story lines just draws you in. You’ll be wanting more from her when you’re done with the last page. Terry McMillan is like my literary aunt in my head…LOL. Much like Danielle, she writes leaving you wanting more at the end.
6) If you could turn one of your books into a feature film, which one would it be & who would play the main character? I would definitely choose “Number One Fan”. Taraji Henson would play my main character, Kennedy.
7) Any advice for aspiring authors? Keep on writing and don’t ever lose focus. Stay optimistic!
FIND THE AUTHOR AND BOOK:
Working on a Great Novel. . .
The Sisterhood tells the story of what becomes possible when intelligence and hope are channeled into an outrageous mission. Founded by Vivian Delacroix – The Sisterhood Foundation is a non-government organization funded by MSK Incorporated, a massive multinational built over decades by an organization of black women. The women invest billions into leading edge technology, pooling their profits into communities, schools, and treatment centers in the battle against Cocanol, a new and addictive drug.
The group is overwhelmingly successful until their progress is noticed by the Raptor, a ruthless enemy with pawns in the US government and ties to the Cocanol manufacturers and international power houses intent on controlling the world. As a first step in a war on the Sisterhood, Vivian is assassinated, triggering a Homeland Security investigation, a Senate inquiry, and a series of increasingly dangerous events.
To survive, the women, led by Chief Security Officer Tonia Rawlings, must fight against unseen forces. Battling across a public stage of media coverage and Wall Street, the women rush against all odds to outwit their foes – even as they execute the final stage of Vivian’s secret plan.
As their enemies draw near, the women risk everything, testing the bonds of faith, marriage and friendship. Along the way, they discover awful truths, make strange alliances and learn why they are the most dangerous women the world has ever seen. Together, they put everything on the line – testing themselves and the limitations the world tries to place on them.
GET TO KNOW NICHOL:
Nichol Bradford, CEO/Founder, Willow. Nichol Bradford is fascinated by human potential, and has always been interested in how technology can help individuals expand beyond their perceived mental limits to develop and transform themselves to the highest level. She spent the last decade exploring these ideas in the online game industry, serving as a senior executive with responsibility for strategy, operations and marketing for major brands that include: Activision/Blizzard, Disney, and Vivendi.
Most recently she managed the operations of Blizzard properties, including World of Warcraft, in China. Now, as the CEO of the Willow Group, Nichol is applying same skills to the realm of elevating psychological well-being. Willow is a transformative technology company focused on employing rigorous scientific research to develop training protocols, hardware and software that can produce a reliable and positive change in the human experience.
Nichol has an MBA from Wharton School of Business in Strategy, and a BBA in Marketing from the University of Houston. She is a fellow of the British American Project, currently serves on the board of the Brandon Marshall Foundation for Mental Health, and is a former term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She is the author of The Sisterhood, and an amatuer boxer.
1) Why did you write the Sisterhood?
I wrote the book I wanted to read about strong yet vulnerable and intelligent black women committed to a great and grand goal — mental freedom and empowerment for all. I was tired of not seeing heroes that looked like me. I wanted to see someone like me save the world, not as a side kick or agency head, but as the actual, certifiable central hero. I wanted to read about Olivia Pope back then, and since she didn’t exist yet, I wrote my own. I also wanted really well-developed characters who had something on their minds other than men. So some of the characters are happily married, and some are single, but most of all their focus is not just on their men (or lack thereof) but on their friendship and common goals. I also love technology and so wanted the women to be deeply immersed in that world.
2) Why are there nine leaders in the Sisterhood?
The Sisterhood is more than a book, it is also a teaching narrative. Each of the women represents one of nine leadership traits (discipline, self-knowledge, financial stewardship, service, sacrifice, education, vision, innovation, and entrepreneurship). In The Sisterhood, how they address challenges to their survival illustrates what is possible with collective action and individual excellence. They present a powerful illustration of what a group of focused women can do together.
The concept came to me on a late night drive home from a success workshop I gave during college for a group of high-school girls. That night, I had the group stand in a circle and tell each other, one at a time and by name, that they were smart, beautiful, and could have anything that they wanted and worked for. It was a hard session, with most of the girls unable to accept the endorsement without tears. So many of them simply could not see it, much less believe it.
As I drove home, I thought that there had to be a better way to illustrate what fulfilling one’s potential would look like – something more penetrating than quotes from self-help books and short workshop sessions. On that drive, I decided to write The Sisterhood. I conceived of an organization of women, who faced a series of challenges. Addressing those challenges would allow me to “show” versus “tell” how an individual can be successful. I went home and jotted the basic plot down which today is more or less the same.
3) How can I use the Sisterhood to make a Life Action Plan?
The book can be read just for entertainment, or it can be read as a skills blueprint. Each of the characters is informed by several major skills and personality testing programs, like the Meyers-Briggs test and the Leadership Women’s EQ. There’s a workbook that allows the reader to assess her own skills as she reads the book and then make an action plan to fill in the areas where she’d like to excel.
4) Are the 9 women based on real people you know?
The nine leaders are based on ALL the women I know – from the amazing women I grew up around, to those I pledged AKA with in 1990, to the women I met at in the African-American MBA Association at business school, to all the women I’ve met along the way . One of the things I love about this book is that it represents the full diaspora – every size, shape, and hue of black women. The women come from all backgrounds, educations, and geographies but they share a common bond through their desire to positively impact their world. So, who is a woman of the Sisterhood? If you are reading this interview then she might just be you. Or maybe she’s the woman who works next to you. From businesswomen to teachers to any profession, any smart and talented woman you admire could be a secret member of The Sisterhood. That’s part of the fun of the book too – wondering about the women in your life to guess who might be in The Sisterhood already – because maybe it isn’t just a book.
5) I’ve heard allot about encouraging Black women to join STEM fields and learn how to code. Did you hope that the Sisterhood would help that cause?
The Sisterhood makes its initial wealth from very well placed investments in technology companies. They use that to buy into established but declining industries that they innovate and to set up their own labs to create the technology of the next generation. Being tech-aware and tech-savvy is at the core of their success. I do hope that young women read The Sisterhood and become more interested in technology because they see the power that it can have to create possibilities and wealth.
6) Did you write yourself into the Sisterhood? Which character are you?
There’s a part of me in every character. But the visionary of the Sisterhood is Vivian Delacroix who is based on my mother Vivian Jones Bradford. My mother was a visionary and entrepreneur. She was completely committed to helping women and supporting the efforts of black women in particular. She believed most in defending the defenseless and used her legal education to do so. I started volunteering by her side when I was a child and she made sure that my values included service to the betterment of society.
7) Why should I tell my friends about the Sisterhood?
You should tell your friends that you’ve found this great book where the black women save the world. Then tell them that there’s a character in it that reminds you of them – because that will happen while you read it – you will see yourself and all of your closest friends. Then challenge them to read it in the next 30 days so you can talk about it and make your action plans together to fulfill your absolute potential and make all your hopes and dreams possible.
FIND THE AUTHOR:
Reading brings people together!
The name says it or does it?
Making light of a word that is used in derogatory manner, I Am Not A Hoe written by Cheryl “Cherry Bomb” Winley is a humorous take on promiscuity. This handbook and guide teaches women “time is money” and answers the million dollar question- how to get money from men.
I Am Not A Hoe is an easy read and will have you laughing even if the content causes you to blush.
Native New Yorker, Cheryl “Cherry Bomb” Winley was born and raised in one of the most affluent counties in the eastern most part of Long Island. The progeny of scholarly and dignified parents, Cherry’s childhood not only mimicked richness and decadence it encompassed balance and an avid love of the English language. However, being gifted with a passion for English and poetry wasn’t her only reward; Cherry’s parents would reward her every action with monetary treats. By the age of 15, Cherry’s lifestyle would consist of limitless credit cards, fine dining, cars, and shopping and more shopping. The excessive gratification from her parents would in turn increase Cherry’s desires and by the age of 16 she would meet her first real boyfriend, a drug dealer, who would change the suburban girl into a lady and a hustler’s wife.
Fast money, fast living, diamonds, designer brands and fancy cars; Cherry’s years as a young adult would be a ‘glamorous life’. Everyone knew her; she was on the arms of the who’s who, traveled the world, and partied with the best of the best. It was also during these years that Cherry would craft a certain strategy and set of skills to attract a specific type of man that would fulfill her ever-growing insatiable desires. “As my tastes grew, the type of man that dated me had to as well – he had to be one up from the last,” Cherry comments. Yet, no matter how ‘sponsored’ Cherry was, something was missing – she would spend her late twenties in search of that “missing piece.” Cherry would become an entrepreneur several times, even a homeowner; nonetheless, being spoiled would always find its way back to her. As luck would have it, it would be another boyfriend who would change the mindset of this ‘professional girlfriend’ and put her on another journey.
After living in Dubai and seeing true wealth, Cherry decided to return back to the one place that gave her balance and clarity – New York. “One day I woke up and wanted the only thing I’ve never really possessed, my independence,” says Cherry, and that day she figured out how to get it. “Come hell, high water, or high heels” is Cherry’s favorite motto which reflects her innate determination to never be without and has led her to figuring out that the one thing that proves to be most profitable is herself and why not sell it! After being asked a million times, how do you get men to give you money? Cherry decided to pen her strategy, thus, her authorial debut I Am Not a Hoe – a handbook that details Cherry’s best possession; her game, her time, and her attention and as Iceberg Slim would say “the game is to be sold not told.”
GET TO KNOW CHERRY:
What was the inspiration behind the I Am Not A Hoe handbook?
The thing that inspired me most and attributed to my writing the "I am not a hoe" handbook would definitely be my disgust for the behaviors exhibited by young women today. In my opinion nine out of ten women are hoes and they are in denial about that. They participate in loose behaviors and promiscuous lifestyles, but try to convince themselves as well as others that they are "good girls”.
What’s your opinion of Good girls?
Good girls are the minority, and unfortunately in today's society not the popular choice.
When writing the hand book was your intention to encourage being a hoe?
In writing my handbook never did I intend to encourage or discourage the behavior, I just shined a light on a taboo subject. My book is a tutorial on different types of hoes. I put in black and white what so many women are determined to deny. I document the thoughts that men have had for years, but only rappers are bold enough to say.
I give points of reference to first establish if the reader is indeed a hoe, and if so, additional questions help identify exactly what type of hoe they are. My book is a blueprint of sorts, realizing that you are a hoe, guidance on getting your act together, getting structured and getting some money. .
With that being said most peoples first question is are you promoting prostitution?
my response... "YES !". But it's deeper than that, I endorse a woman entertaining men for money, as that is productive and strategic versus a woman laying with one man after another with no other goal outside of an orgasm or even worse.....love.
What type of feedback are you getting from women?
So far on my journey of enlightening hoes I've been met with a surprising amount of women that agree with me, and have in turn accepted and professed, "I am a Hoe".
What is your definition of the word Hoe?
The word Hoe is funny to me. The urban dictionary defines a hoe as a loose promiscuous woman.
I agree that those characteristics are definitely part of the meaning, but don't encompass the word in its entirety. I believe that being a hoe is a lifestyle that surpasses sex or sexual acts. It is the way one carries themselves, the company you keep, the places you frequent, your style of dress, even your vernacular.
What can both men and women gain from reading this handbook? What are the take aways?
I feel that both men and women can learn from my book. Men will hopefully stop referring to women in such a derogatory manner and take responsibility for their role in womens' decline in morality. Most women validate themselves through the eyes of their fathers and lovers, so how you see her and treat her is in turn what she will often become.
I strongly feel as if I wrote my handbook from the whispers of men as you walk by. It is cumulative opinions and shared stories from the barbershops. It is a glimpse into the minds of men, their unspoken truths. I allow women to see themselves how most men see us.
I hope that my book will educate women on how they are being viewed. I wrote it to take some of the power out of the word Hoe, and I pray that readers take from it what they need, if nothing more than a laugh.
What impact do you intend to make in literature?
I hope to make an impact on closed minded and judgmental people and provide a voice for women everywhere that are tired of being ashamed of their lifestyles. In my writing I say the things people think, but fear saying and give taboo subjects a platform.
That's my politically correct answer. My Cherry Bomb truth is: I want to help these Hoes get this money, and the game is to be sold not told. So for a small fee I can help them get like me. Lol nah really the first answer...... I guess.
Where can the readers get the I Am Not A Hoe handbook?
The I Am Not A Hoe handbook is available on Amazon.com as well as morecherrybomb.com
FIND THE AUTHOR:
Kimberly Ranee Hicks, Author/Poet/Reviewer
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