Featured Author: Marlon James

For black history month this year I wanted to try something that spoke to the blog itself while still shedding light on fantasy and writers of color. Each Friday for the rest of 358fdd0c873707ea62162bf8d0c0184345167563636023847.jpgFebruary. I’ll be sharing another talented author and their body of work.

This week I discovered an author whom I actually already had on my TBR. While doing a bookstore browse many years ago. At that time the distinctive cover showed a woman who’s skin was a striking contrast to the paleness of the background surrounding her.

The Book of Night Women. tells the story of Lilith, born into slavery on a Jamaican sugar plantation at the end of the eighteenth century. At her birth, the slave 64f0abdf369633633bfb407331e9052a6281915892799790816.jpgwomen around her recognize a dark power that they and she will come to both revere and fear. 

Marlon James, born in Kingston, Jamaica left Jamaica to escape homophobic violence and economic conditions that he felt would mean career stagnation, he received a master’s degree in creative writing from Wilkes University in Wilkes7884e152a061d4850cf1e4f61cccd7d84859259759275158337.jpg Barre, PA. 

His first novel, John Crow’s Devil was rejected 70 times before being accepted for publication in 2005. James has taught English and creative writing at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, since 2007.  He is also a faculty lecturer at St. Francis College’s Low Residency MFA in Creative Writing.

In February 2019, James gave the seventh annual Tolkien Lecture at Pembroke College, Oxford.  He has published four novels: John Crow’s Devil, The Book of Night Women, A Brief History of Seven Killings which was the winner of the 2015 Man Booker Prize, and Black Leopard, Red Wolf. He is now living in Minneapolis. 

 

Which of the Marlon James Novels Have You Read? Leave A Comment Below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

 

Featured Author: L. A. Banks

For black history month this year I wanted to try something that spoke to the blog itself while still shedding light on fantasy and writers of color. Each Friday for the rest of February. I’ll be sharing another talented author and their body of work.

ec3eab148b2944dfd84495eb900e8a8a3355255612623085561.jpgThis week I have the special pleasure of highlighting not only an amazing, award winning author, but also a legendary Philadelphia native whose body of work crossed genres.

I’m describing none of other than author Leslie Ann Esdaile Banks. She has written under the pen name Leslie Esdaile, Leslie E. Banks, Leslie Banks, Leslie Esdaile Banks and L. A. Banks. With the latter penning at least 19 books in the dark fantasy/horror.

Inspired by her life experiences and the abnormal intensity of crime and political injustice in the city. She created a world where she could express her political views and cultural experiences to the world. A world where the CEOs of major companies were vampires draining the life’s blood from African American youth. 

Born in 1959, Leslie has won numerous awards but is most noted for snagging the 2008 87a26fba2e588539f7ed1f528bf5dd847992586320228627.jpgEssence Storyteller of the Year literary award.  As L. A. Banks she wrote The Vampire Huntress, Crimson Moon, Dark Avengers and The Dark series. However she has written in multiple genres, including African-American literature, romance, women’s fiction, crime suspense, dark fantasy/horror and non-fiction.exploring different nationalities and cultures within her work. 

I recall hearing the name but never actually read anything from her. I honestly wouldn’t have known about her if I wasn’t actively looking for authors of color who wrote in the fantasy genre. She lived in Philly this entire time! 

Sadly Mrs. Banks passed away from cancer on August 2, 2011, at the age of 51. She left behind a daughter, Helena Esdaile and a literary catalog to make any book-lover drool. That’s what makes L. A. Banks this week’s featured author. I’ve already added Bad Blood and Minion to my TBR. 

 

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Have You Read The Vampire Huntress Legend or Crimson Moon series? Leave A Comment Below!

 

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

 

Check out this video of the late, great Ms. L. A. Banks Queen of the Vampires, tamer of Shadow wolves. 

Bookish Thoughts: Invisible Library Wrap-Up

20180731_1510192610916188086602074.jpgI’m a bit obsessed with The Invisible Library right now. The entire concept of a secret society traversing dimensions collecting specialized works of fiction was enough to lure me in but the story was basically as the blurb described; Sherlock Holmes with a twist of magic.

It gave me a taste of steampunk which I absolutely loved because I’m intrigued by the genre but haven’t been able to tear myself away from my normal reads to actually break into my stash of steampunk novels. I bought an anthology and what was described as a ‘must read’ for people interested in breaking into the genre.

I’m still working on fine tuning what kinds of books I truly love to read. I read most fiction, but have been known to peruse the occasional memoir. The Invisible Library was found in the Fantasy section of the bookstore.

It happens to be a Book about books, mystery and for some reason classifies as a Young Adult, with a touch of steampunk. I’ve always enjoyed Sherlock Holmes story. I also enjoy whodunnit’s (dinner theatre), clue (both the game and the movie) and suspense/thriller/horror. I was genuinely worried that the hodge-podge of things happening with the book would be overwhelming. It was pleasantly surprising that the story was cohesive and a real testament to the author.

I keep thinking about their codenames. In the book Irene mentions that the initiates get to pick her name and that Kostchei (the deathless) had chosen his name based on the fable. This makes me wonder if all the agents of  “The Library” were named after other previous book characters. So I googled….and google didn’t know.

Then I went to GoodReads…and i’m waiting for a response….

and then there’s always the twitter verse…screenshot_20180801-224534_twitter4132641945363581948.jpg

and so far no one has answered.  But, I’ll keep checking on the answer to that because I’m dying to read the story of Bradamant. I’m also curious to know which Irene she’s supposed to be. I enjoyed the fact that it was only 329 pages. I feel like my limit is approximately 600 pages but I wouldn’t read two of those kinds of books back to back.

The reviews for The Invisible Library  are mostly favorable. Some people didn’t like the blending of so many fantasy elements but the majority at least accepted the concept of alternate realms that allowed it to work.

The description for The Masked City has me drooling!!!

Irene’s mission to save Kai and avert Armageddon will take her to a dark, alternate Venice where it’s always Carnival. Here Irene will be forced to blackmail, fast talk, and fight. Or face death.

I refuse to borrow this book. I must claim it for my own!

Therefore I’ll be going back for The Masked City, The Burning Page and The Lost Plot very very soon.  I was literally about to read another Gregory Maguire book. I absolutely love his work. Just for kicks I’m working my way through a list of his work. I have to finish The Wicked Years series . Now I’m going to read The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin because the cover just popped into my head. I’ve been meaning to read this book for some time and have heard a lot about it. All seem great but I haven’t read any reviews so that I don’t have a biased opinion.

Happy Reading!

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What are you reading?

Let Me Know In The Comments Below!

 

Check out my Review for The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman click Here!

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on FacebookTwitterInstagramGoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

Renegades Read Along (Chap 1 – 15)

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Currently Reading: Renegades by Marissa Meyer

I was having some trouble getting through my read of Renegades and was hoping to add some excitement in hopes of finishing the book. So this is me trying to spice things up with what will hopefully be a new permanent addition to the blog. For more on what I thought about the first fifteen chapters watch the video below!

 

 

What Do You Think of The Book So Far?

Let Me Know In The Comments Below!

You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com

What’s New Pussycat: Literacy Programs (Books Through Bars)

fb_img_1520964442251555898774.jpgI started Blu Moon Fiction in order to share my passion for books and writing. I’ve been fortunate to work with some pretty respectable charities in my time as a result, which has fostered my interests in starting a few of my own as well as supporting the ones I work with presently.

Every Tuesday between 7:30 and 9:30 pm a few kind souls gather together and send some books to individuals in need. Books Through Bars, an all-volunteer non-profit organization helps the community while striving to reverse the devastating effects that injustice and incarceration has on individuals, families and communities.

What interested me the most in this group was their book distribution programBooks Through Bars, sends free books and educational materials to prisoners in; Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, New York, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia. The books are sent to anyone who asks, as long as their prison accepts books.

Books Through Bars also hosts Address This! an education and empowerment project providing innovative correspondence courses to individuals incarcerated in Pennsylvania. Address This! pays special attention to the participation of prisoners in address thissolitary confinement or maximum security, who often have little access to such educational options.

Through their community outreach, strives to educate the general public about prison issues. The organization has sat in on panels and staff tables at community events to raise awareness around prison issues. Books Through Bars has also hosted a film festival, read-a-thons, as well as various public conversation on alternatives to prisons

The group is responsible for affecting thousands of lives, from the organizations recipients across the US down to the volunteers who’ve dedicated their time to make a difference. fb_img_1520612713256858056820.jpg

The group gathers most of its books from donations and is always looking for more, I decided to do my part by hosting a Read-Olympics and Book Drive on behalf of the program. Blu Moon Fiction will also be selling a fantasy art calendar featuring local talent. With 10% of the proceeds going to this organization right here.

If you’d like to donate your time as well as a book or two. Books Through Bars;  holds weekly volunteering, Tuesday nights 7:30–9:30 PM. But if you’re in the area on a weekend and would like to also volunteer you can also do so on the 1st & 3rd Saturday of every month.

Which Organizations Do You Like To Support?

Leave A Comment Below!

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You can keep up with me, Noel Bleu and Blu Moon Fiction on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, GoodReads and Pinterest, or Shoot me an email @ BluMoonFiction@gmail.com