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Just Wanna Testifyby Pearl Cleage
Synopses & Reviews
Familiar faces and places meet fresh twists and turns in this enthralling novel from acclaimed author Pearl Cleage.
Atlanta’s West End district has always been a haven and home to a coterie of unique characters—artists and thinkers, dreamers and doers. Folks here know one another’s names, keep their doors unlocked, and look out for their neighbors. Anyone planning to sell drugs, vandalize, or rob a little old lady should think twice before hitting this part of town. And Blue Hamilton, West End’s unofficial mayor and longtime protector, will see to it that you do. Blue wears many hats here, including adored husband to Regina, dear nephew to Abbey, and doting father to Sweetie and another little one on the way.
Blue is also the man you pay your respects to if you’re looking to set up shop in this urban enclave—just ask Serena Mayflower, whom Blue sees striding down Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard wearing skin-tight black leather pants, thigh-high boots, and bright red lipstick. This tall, slender, ethereally beautiful woman and her four equally striking sisters make up the Too Fine Five, a quintet of international supermodels who have arrived in town for an Essence magazine photo shoot.
But Blue’s gut tells him that there’s more to these Mayflower mademoiselles than their affection for full moons and Bloody Marys. With the help of his beloved Regina and their close friends and relations in West End, Blue vows to uncover the women’s secret intentions—and prove once and for all that there is no greater force on earth than the power of love.
A mesmerizing slice of not-so-everyday life, brimming with wicked wit and spiced with a few supernatural surprises, Just Wanna Testify showcases Pearl Cleage’s masterly storytelling at its soulful and satisfying finest.
"In her return to the West End, that fictional Afro-urban paradise in Atlanta, Ga., Cleage (Till You Hear from Me) has the everlovin' mysterious Blue Hamilton, 'godfather' of the neighborhood where crime is unknown, pitted against the Too Fine Five, Amazonian African-American supermodels whose arrival in town spells trouble. Serena Mayflower manages the girls, or 'vamps' (vampires, get it?), who are all part of a group that has moved its headquarters from New Orleans to an island near the West End. The good thing is they drink tomato juice instead of blood, the bad is that they are looking for some appropriate stud muffins for breeding purposes. They've hired five Morehouse College men for generous compensation, but the men neglected to read the fine print in their contract and have come to Blue for help. Seems that when the vamps are done with the men, the men will be done... for good. There's moments of kick butt fun, and although the plot veers toward hackneyed and the 'Say what?' ending is a groaner, fans will be pleased. (May)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWxyz LLC)
About the Author
Pearl Cleage is the author of What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day . . . , an Oprah’s Book Club selection; Some Things I Never Thought I’d Do, a Good Morning America Read This! book club pick; Babylon Sisters, for which she was named the 2006 Go On Girl! Book Club Author of the Year; Baby Brother’s Blues, winner of the 2006 NAACP Image Award and the African American Literary Award for fiction; Seen It All and Done the Rest; and Till You Hear From Me. The first author selected for the Essence Book Club, she collaborated with her husband, writer Zaron W. Burnett, Jr., on the poem We Speak Your Names. She is also an accomplished dramatist whose plays include Flyin’ West, Blues for an Alabama Sky, and A Song for Coretta. Cleage and her husband live in Atlanta.
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