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Book The Secret Lives of Church Ladies Description/Summary:
The Secret Lives of Church Ladies explores the raw and tender places where Black women and girls dare to follow their desires and pursue a momentary reprieve from being good. The nine stories in this collection feature four generations of characters grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church's double standards and their own needs and passions. There is fourteen-year-old Jael, who has a crush on the preacher's wife. At forty-two, Lyra realizes that her discomfort with her own body stands between her and a new love. As Y2K looms, Caroletta's "same time next year" arrangement with her childhood best friend is tenuous. A serial mistress lays down the ground rules for her married lovers. In the dark shadows of a hospice parking lot, grieving strangers find comfort in each other. With their secret longings, new love, and forbidden affairs, these church ladies are as seductive as they want to be, as vulnerable as they need to be, as unfaithful and unrepentant as they care to be, and as free as they deserve to be.
Book The Secret Lives of Church Ladies Description/Summary:
"The Secret Lives of Church Ladies explores the raw and tender places where black women and girls dare to follow their desires and pursue a momentary reprieve from being good. The nine stories in this collection feature four generations of characters grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church's double standards and their own needs and passions"--
"With stories by women from a wide range of religious communities--including Evangelical Christian, Catholic, Jewish, Mormon, Muslim, Calvinist, Moonie, the Unification Church, and Jehovah's Witnesses--the writers in Beyond Belief pull back a heavy curtain to reveal what they love about their lives within these communities, along with the pain that comes from the rigid expectations and diminishment of women so often built into religious orthodoxy."--Back cover.
Competition for church members in Mount Oak has reached a furious peak. When tragedy strikes one of their hometown sons, the church women are drawn together through compassion. The Church Ladies is a contemporary tale illustrating how women can have a major impact on the church. Through friendships that reach beneath surface level -- and trials more severe than simple -- they unite with common purpose: to pray, share, and comfort. Slowly, the community of believers learns that the church grows when it is rooted in love. Characters you'll laugh and cry with, in situations every woman will instantly relate to, light up this page-turner about a miracle that could happen anywhere.
GOLD MEDALIST OF FOREWORD REVIEWS' 2015 INDIEFAB AWARDS IN WOMEN'S STUDIES What's wrong with black women? Not a damned thing! The Sisters Are Alright exposes anti–black-woman propaganda and shows how real black women are pushing back against distorted cartoon versions of themselves. When African women arrived on American shores, the three-headed hydra—servile Mammy, angry Sapphire, and lascivious Jezebel—followed close behind. In the '60s, the Matriarch, the willfully unmarried baby machine leeching off the state, joined them. These stereotypes persist to this day through newspaper headlines, Sunday sermons, social media memes, cable punditry, government policies, and hit song lyrics. Emancipation may have happened more than 150 years ago, but America still won't let a sister be free from this coven of caricatures. Tamara Winfrey Harris delves into marriage, motherhood, health, sexuality, beauty, and more, taking sharp aim at pervasive stereotypes about black women. She counters warped prejudices with the straight-up truth about being a black woman in America. “We have facets like diamonds,” she writes. “The trouble is the people who refuse to see us sparkling.”
Book The Secret Lives of Saints Description/Summary:
A riveting, shocking account of the founding and flourishing of the polygamous, fundamentalist Mormon sect in Bountiful, B.C. Winston Blackmore of Bountiful, B.C., says it’s God’s will that he has dozens of wives and scores of children. Canada’s most outspoken polygamist insists his faith left him no choice but to "marry" and impregnate nearly a dozen teens, and he has publicly admitted to marrying girls as young as fifteen. Polygamy and sex with minors are both illegal in Canada and yet Blackmore and this cult flourish. He believes that he and his religion are invincible, protected by the country’s constitutional guarantee of religious freedom, and he keeps a framed copy of Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms hanging on his office wall. So far, no one has challenged him. The Secret Lives of Saints documents the rise of the fundamentalist Mormons and unravels Blackmore’s story using his own words as well as those of people who have escaped the cult to live in the outside world. It details the intermarriages and intrigues among the patriarchs as they fight for control of minds, money, property and women. And running through the narrative are the most troubling questions of all: Why has nothing been done to stop the illegal practices of this cult? Why haven’t the polygamists, pedophiles and abusers been charged and jailed? As well as telling a story that will raise the hairs on your arms, The Secret Lives of Saints will leave you pondering the notion of tolerance, whether it is possible to have both religious freedom and individual rights, and where the line needs to be drawn between them. From the Hardcover edition.
A cautionary investigative exposé into some of the controversial ways the Catholic Church uses its considerable wealth traces the journey of money collected by some of the U.S.'s poorest parishes, revealing the considerable measures taken to conceal Vatican resource allocation. 50,000 first printing.
Book The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives Description/Summary:
“Men are like yam, you cut them how you like.” Baba Segi has three wives, seven children, and a mansion filled with riches. But now he has his eyes on Bolanle, a young university graduate wise to life’s misfortunes. When Bolanle responds to Baba Segi’s advances, she unwittingly uncovers a secret which threatens to rock his patriarchal household to the core. i is a scandalous, engrossing tale of sexual politics and family strife in modern-day Nigeria. Lola Shoneyin’s bestselling novel bursts on to the stage in a vivid adaptation by Caine Award-winning playwright Rotimi Babatunde.
Book You Can Keep That to Yourself Description/Summary:
"In this slim and witty volume, attorney Smyer collects an alphabetized short list of things not to say to African-Americans...Each entry is designed to strip away the hypocrisy and half-truths of these cultural exchanges by laughing at them. Smyer's hilarious sampler offers astute observations on race and culture." --Publishers Weekly Greetings, well-intentioned person of pallor. Your good intentions used to be enough. But in these diverse and divisive times, some people would hold you accountable for your actions. You were not raised for such unfairness. You need help. And help you now have. Let Daquan--that black coworker you are referring to when you claim to have black friends--help you navigate perilous small talk with African Americans with this handy field guide. This portable bit of emotional labor puts at your fingertips a tabbed and alphabetized list of things not to say to black people. Finally! How to use: Keep this handbook close. Whenever you are confronted with an African American and you feel compelled to blurt out an observation about her hair or to liken your Tesla lease to slavery, ask for a moment to consult this reference. She'll wait. If the keen insight you want to share is listed herein, You Can Keep That to Yourself. It truly is that easy!
Book Secret Lives of the First Ladies Description/Summary:
This newly updated collection of biographies showcases all the secrets, scandals, and trivia from America’s first ladies. Whether she’s a leading lady, loyal spouse, or lightning rod for scandal, the First Lady of the United States has always been in the spotlight—and in 2017 that was truer than ever. This revised and expanded edition from Quirk’s best-selling Secret Lives series features outrageous and uncensored profiles of the women of the White House, from Martha Washington to Melania Trump, it comes complete with hundreds of little-known, politically incorrect, and downright wacko facts. Did you know that . . . • Dolley Madison loved to chew tobacco • Mary Todd Lincoln conducted séances on a regular basis • Eleanor Roosevelt and Ellen Wilson both carried guns • Jacqueline Kennedy spent $121,000 on her wardrobe in a single year • Betty Ford liked to chat on CB radios—her handle was “First Mama” And much, much more.
After her "stand-in mother," a bold black woman named Rosaleen, insults the three biggest racists in town, Lily Owens joins Rosaleen on a journey to Tiburon, South Carolina, where they are taken in by three black, bee-keeping sisters.
“Improbably charming...will have you chortling and reading lines aloud.” —PEOPLE A compulsively readable debut novel—spiky, sharp, intriguingly dark, and tender—about a woman on the edge that combines the psychological insight of Sally Rooney with the sharp humor of Nina Stibbe and the emotional resonance of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. Martha Friel just turned forty. Once, she worked at Vogue and planned to write a novel. Now, she creates internet content. She used to live in a pied-à-terre in Paris. Now she lives in a gated community in Oxford, the only person she knows without a PhD, a baby or both, in a house she hates but cannot bear to leave. But she must leave, now that her husband Patrick—the kind who cooks, throws her birthday parties, who loves her and has only ever wanted her to be happy—has just moved out. Because there’s something wrong with Martha, and has been for a long time. When she was seventeen, a little bomb went off in her brain and she was never the same. But countless doctors, endless therapy, every kind of drug later, she still doesn’t know what’s wrong, why she spends days unable to get out of bed or alienates both strangers and her loved ones with casually cruel remarks. And she has nowhere to go except her childhood home: a bohemian (dilapidated) townhouse in a romantic (rundown) part of London—to live with her mother, a minorly important sculptor (and major drinker) and her father, a famous poet (though unpublished) and try to survive without the devoted, potty-mouthed sister who made all the chaos bearable back then, and is now too busy or too fed up to deal with her. But maybe, by starting over, Martha will get to write a better ending for herself—and she’ll find out that she’s not quite finished after all.
In Seven Men, New York Times best-selling author Eric Metaxas presents seven exquisitely crafted short portraits of widely known—but not well understood—Christian men, each of whom uniquely showcases a commitment to live by certain virtues in the truth of the gospel. Written in a beautiful and engaging style, Seven Men addresses what it means (or should mean) to be a man today, at a time when media and popular culture present images of masculinity that are not the picture presented in Scripture and historic civil life. What does it take to be a true exemplar as a father, brother, husband, leader, coach, counselor, change agent, and wise man? What does it mean to stand for honesty, courage, and charity, especially at times when the culture and the world run counter to those values? Each of the seven biographies represents the life of a man who experienced the struggles and challenges to be strong in the face of forces and circumstances that would have destroyed the resolve of lesser men. Each of the seven men profiled—George Washington, William Wilberforce, Eric Liddell, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Jackie Robinson, John Paul II, and Charles Colson—call the reader to a more elevated walk and lifestyle, one that embodies the gospel in the world around us.
A sharp and entertaining essay collection about the importance of multiple forms of love and friendship in a world designed for couples, from a laser-precise new voice. Sometimes it seems like there are two American creeds, self-reliance and marriage, and neither of them is mine. I experience myself as someone formed and sustained by others' love and patience, by student loans and stipends, by the kindness of strangers. Briallen Hopper's Hard to Love honors the categories of loves and relationships beyond marriage, the ones that are often treated as invisible or seen as secondary--friendships, kinship with adult siblings, care teams that form in times of illness, or various alternative family formations. She also values difficult and amorphous loves like loving a challenging job or inanimate objects that can't love you back. She draws from personal experience, sharing stories about her loving but combative family, the fiercely independent Emerson scholar who pushed her away, and the friends who have become her invented or found family; pop culture touchstones like the Women's March, John Green's The Fault in Our Stars, and the timeless series Cheers; and the work of writers like Joan Didion, Gwendolyn Brooks, Flannery O'Connor, and Herman Melville (Moby-Dick like you've never seen it!). Hard to Love pays homage and attention to unlikely friends and lovers both real and fictional. It is a series of love letters to the meaningful, if underappreciated, forms of intimacy and community that are tricky, tangled, and tough, but ultimately sustaining.
Book The Secret Life of Lady Liberty Description/Summary:
The goddess origins of the Statue of Liberty and her connections with the founding and the future of America • Examines Lady Liberty’s ties to Native American spiritual traditions, the Earth Mother, Roman goddesses, Black Madonnas, and Mary Magdalene • Reveals the sharp contrast between depicting “liberty” as a female and the reality of women and other suppressed classes even today • Explains how this Goddess of the New World inspires all people toward equality, compassion, peace-keeping, and environmental stewardship Uncovering the forgotten lineage of the Statue of Liberty, Bob Hieronimus and Laura Cortner explain how she is based on a female symbol representing America on the earliest maps of the continent in the form of a Native American “Queen.” The image of a woman symbolizing independence was embraced by the American revolutionaries to rally the populace against the King, filling the role of “Founding Mother” and protector of the fledgling republic. Incorporating Libertas, the Roman goddess of freed slaves, with Minerva, Demeter, Justice, and the Indian Princess, Lady Liberty is seen all over the nation’s capital, and on the seals and flags of many states. Showing how a new appreciation for the Statue of Liberty as the American goddess can serve as a unifying inspiration for activism, the authors explore how this Lady Liberty is a personification of America and its destiny. They examine multiple traditions that influenced her symbolism, from the Neolithic Earth Mother, to Mary Magdalene, Columbia, and Joan of Arc, while revealing the sharp contrast between depicting “liberty” as a female and the reality of women and other suppressed classes throughout history. Their study of “Liberty Enlightening the World” led them to conclude that the empowerment of contemporary women is essential for achieving sustainable liberty for all. Sounding the call for this “Goddess of the New World” to inspire us all toward peacekeeping, nurturing, compassion, and environmental stewardship, the authors explain how the Statue of Liberty serves as the conscience of our nation and is a symbol of both the myths that unite us and the diversity that strengthens us.
Book The Hidden Lives of Tudor Women: A Social History Description/Summary:
The turbulent Tudor Age never fails to capture the imagination. But what was it truly like to be a woman during this era? The Tudor period conjures up images of queens and noblewomen in elaborate court dress; of palace intrigue and dramatic politics. But if you were a woman, it was also a time when death during childbirth was rife; when marriage was usually a legal contract, not a matter for love, and the education you could hope to receive was minimal at best. Yet the Tudor century was also dominated by powerful and dynamic women in a way that no era had been before. Historian Elizabeth Norton explores the life cycle of the Tudor woman, from childhood to old age, through the diverging examples of women such as Elizabeth Tudor, Henry VIII’s sister; Cecily Burbage, Elizabeth's wet nurse; Mary Howard, widowed but influential at court; Elizabeth Boleyn, mother of a controversial queen; and Elizabeth Barton, a peasant girl who would be lauded as a prophetess. Their stories are interwoven with studies of topics ranging from Tudor toys to contraception to witchcraft, painting a portrait of the lives of queens and serving maids, nuns and harlots, widows and chaperones. Norton brings this vibrant period to colorful life in an evocative and insightful social history.
Book Devils, Lusts and Strange Desires Description/Summary:
'My New Year's Eve Toast: to all the devils, lusts, passions, greeds, envies, loves, hates, strange desires, enemies ghostly and real, the army of memories, with which I do battle - may they never give me peace' PATRICIA HIGHSMITH (New Year's Eve, 1947) Made famous by the great success of her psychological thrillers, The Talented Mr Ripley and Strangers on a Train, Patricia Highsmith is lauded as one of the most influential and celebrated modern writers. However, there has never been a clear picture of the woman behind the books. The relationship between Highsmith's lesbianism, her fraught personality – by parts self-destructive and malicious – and her fiction, has been largely avoided by biographers. She was openly homosexual and wrote the seminal lesbian love story, Carol. In modern times, she would be venerated as a radical exponent of the LGBT community. However, her status as an LGBT icon is undermined by the fact that she was excessively cruel and exploitative of her friends and lovers. In this new biography, Richard Bradford brings his sharp, incisive style to one of the great and most controversial writers of the twentieth century. He considers Highsmith's bestsellers in the context of her troubled personal life; her alcoholism, licentious sex life, racism, anti-Semitism, misogyny and abundant self-loathing.
Book The Secret Life of Dorothy Soames Description/Summary:
“Far from growing up in the wealthy, fox-hunting circles she had always suggested, her mother had in fact been raised in a foundling hospital for the children of unwed women.” — Editor’s Choice, The New York Times Book Review “Extraordinary … fascinating, moving.” —The Telegraph “This emotional and transatlantic journey is a page-turner.” — Editor’s Pick, Amazon Book Review “Book groups will find as much to discuss here as they have with The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, and Educated by Tara Westover.” — BookList Recommended by The New York Times, The Saturday Evening Post, Amazon Book Review, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus and more, Justine Cowan’s remarkable true story of how she uncovered her mother’s upbringing as a foundling at London’s Hospital for the Maintenance and Education of Exposed and Deserted Young Children has received acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic. In the U.K., it has been featured in The Mail on Sunday, The Daily Mail, The Daily Mirror and The Spectator. The Telegraph calls it “extraordinary and Glamour magazine chose it as the best new book based on real life. The story begins when Justine found her often volatile mother in an unlit room writing a name over and over again, one that she had never heard before and would not hear again for many years – Dorothy Soames. Thirty years later, overcome with grief following her mother’s death, Justine found herself drawn back to the past, uncovering a mystery that stretched back to the early years of World War II and beyond, into the dark corridors of the Hospital for the Maintenance and Education of Exposed and Deserted Young Children. Established in the eighteenth century to raise “bastard” children to clean chamber pots for England’s ruling class, the institution was tied to some of history’s most influential figures and events. From its role in the development of solitary confinement and human medical experimentation to the creation of the British Museum and the Royal Academy of Arts, its impact on Western culture continues to reverberate. It is the reason we read Dickens’ Oliver Twist and enjoy Handel’s Messiah each Christmas. It was also the environment that shaped a young girl known as Dorothy Soames, who bravely withstood years of physical and emotional abuse at the hands of a sadistic headmistress—a resilient child whose only hope would be a daring escape as German bombers rained death from the skies. Heartbreaking, surprising, and unforgettable, The Secret Life of Dorothy Soames is the true story of one woman’s quest to understand the secrets that had poisoned her mother’s mind, and her startling discovery that her family’s fate had been sealed centuries before.