21 Questions

21 Questions by Mason Dixon is a fast-paced, contemporary romance featuring Kenya Davis, a successful thirty-six-year-old professional on a quest to find love. Kenya is in search of a traditional love, the kind that’s built upon trust, honesty, and mutual respect. But, there’s a catch. She wants a woman that matches her financial prowess, and she refuses to settle for less. Kenya thought she had found Ms. Right upon meeting Mackenzie Richardson at a speed dating event in South Beach Read More …

First Bloom-Stories of Blossoming Black Lesbian Love

  Love is such a complex emotion it sometimes defies explanation. It can inspire someone to stretch themselves beyond their comfort zone. For others, it prompts contortions to avoid causing pain or discomfort to those who they care about. It can make someone run toward a burning building or walk away from a life of comfort. First Bloom-Stories of Blossoming Black Lesbian Love is a collection of stories edited by Saydeah E. Howard that provides literary examples of all the Read More …

Pat Greene: Her Story

In Pat Greene: Her Story, Anondra “Kat” Williams has crafted autofiction by permitting Patricia “Pat” Greene to recall her life, lovers, and heartbreaks. Some chapters are named for and exclusive to a single lover. In a way, this is a coming-of-age story because Pat relays (through a series of reflections and lessons) her emotional growth and the journey she took to achieve equilibrium. It took Pat several decades to realize her worth and truly understand and find love, but in Read More …

Callaloo & Other Lesbian Love Tales

Callaloo and Other Lesbian Love Tales is an impressive collection of short stories by LaShonda K. Barnett, who you may recall is the author of Jam on the Vine, reviewed on the The BLLC Review earlier this year. All of the stories focus on various aspects of love between women, and the stories are set in various time periods, (some historical), and locales.  A caveat: the collection was written in 1999, so at times it feels a bit dated, but Read More …

Five Classic Black Lesbian Books that You’ve Probably Never Heard of But Need to Read

I recently attended a literary conference focused on lesbian literature and was shocked at how many attendees didn’t know anything about Black lesbian literature outside of two or three authors. Most were familiar with Jewelle Gomez’s The Gilda Stories, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, and Audre Lorde, the consummate Black lesbian poet, but that was about it. Full disclosure: I wrote an entire dissertation on the marginalization of Black lesbian literature, so I might know more about Black Read More …

Blue Talk and Love

*This review first appeared on the Lesbrary* As soon as this book was released I knew I had to have it. Stories about Black queer women written by a Black queer woman? Yes, please! I was a little worried that I wouldn’t connect to them; they are all set in and around New York City, a place I’ve only visited once as a kid. It is a testament to Sullivan’s skill and talent that I was immediately drawn into this Read More …

The Gilda Stories

Vampires in literature are often portrayed as pale male creatures lurking on the edge of society seeking to seduce and destroy. It is rare to find a novel that reflects vampires of color, vampires who are women, or vampires who are same gender loving. The Gilda Stories by Jewelle Gomez is a well-written exception. The series of vignettes focus on a black immortal journeying across centuries gaining perspective on life and how to live. The book opens with The Girl Read More …

The Next Girl and Other Lesbian Tales

The Next Girl and Other Lesbian Tales by Tawanna Sullivan is an eclectic short story collection with a little something for everyone. I live for short story collections, so I was excited to discover this writer. I use the term “discover” loosely here, because Sullivan is one of the founders of Kuma2.net, a website that focused on publishing Black lesbian erotica back in the early 2000s, so she’s been writing for quite some time. While I was familiar with the Read More …

A Return to Arms

I’ve always felt that a sign of a good read is one that elicits emotions in the reader. There were several times when I teetered between anger and delight as I read A Return to Arms. The character, Kanaan, brought up (past) anger because I’ve encountered men like him—particularly in social circles aimed at Black audiences and social awareness. My delight stems from a deep appreciation for sistahs like Toya, Folami, and Nina who “walk the walk and talk the Read More …

When I Was Your Girlfriend

I’m honored to kick-off the BLLC Review. Throughout 2017, our reviewers will post critical, heart-warming, and thoughtful reviews on a variety of books every Thursday. First up, a review of When I Was Your Girlfriend by Nikki Harmon. When I Was Your Girlfriend is a romantic escapade featuring Dee Armstrong, a smart, capable, and stable woman with just enough flaws and hang-ups to form an interesting and strong-willed character. On page one, the reader learns that Dee is “the only Read More …