Saturday, 24 March 2018

TALLAWAH BOOK CLUB: Funny Jamaican tales, a sublime poetry collection, and a life coach points the way

Editor’s Pick! 
PERSONAL GROWTH: Life coach and lawyer Olubode Shawn Brown draws on two decades of experience in his field for Bloom: The Essential Journey, his self-development text, published by Banyan Tree Press. Packing 280 pages, Brown’s book explores five essential life nutrients, five life areas and offers a card deck of 25 new personality archetypes, while examining life-balancing paradigms rooted in the five elements of nature. The thick text also introduces stories from the author’s own journey of self-discovery and pursuit of happiness and purpose. And he also shares conversations with clients to cap this journey of 21 guideposts. 

THE BEST MEDICINE: Any Jamaican writer looking for inspiration need only take a walk down the street. Patrick Newman has first-hand proof. The first-time author and bonafide Jamaican uses his debut collection of short stories and vignettes, My Life as a Joke: Laugh Till Yuh Belly Buss, to share “amusing” and “thought-provoking” tales from his travels throughout Jamaica and from his days growing up in the rural parts. According to publishers Minna Press, Newman’s nearly 70 stories (“My Grandfather and His Belt”, “My Uncle-in-Law as Deacon, “The Bellevue Experience”) are filled with innuendoes, puns and humour that bring to colourful life the characters and their predicaments, while capturing customs, traditions and the general mores about what it means to be truly Jamaican. 

TASTE AND SEE: With such titles as “Recognizing Leon” and “Bottomless”, the 21 poems in Raymond Antrobus’ new anthology, To Sweeten Bitter (Outspoken Press) have been hailed by critics as everything from “open and searching” and “wanting and volatile”, in the tradition of early Derek Walcott. Writer and publisher Margaret Busby concurs. “These are poems aching with the loss of a father from dementia even before death,” she reports, “and Antrobus in these pages moves skillfully between reclaiming and letting go of memory.” 

>> Also new on bookshelves:

FINDING GIDEON by Eric Jerome Dickey. (A professional job turns personal for one investigator in this latest pageturner from the immensely popular and prolific bestselling author.) 

DR. DEATH by K. Sean Harris. (Hide your daughters! In this edge-of-your-seat psychological portrait, a gynaecologist harbours a dark secret: he’s a descendant of the notorious Dr. Hutchinson, Jamaica’s first serial killer.)







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