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 …

Yabo

I don’t remember when or how, but I was introduced to a snippet of Yabo many months ago through the characters Ruby, Ramses, and Jules. Yabo was released in 2014, and finally, in 2017, I can remove it from my TBR list with much delight. If Yabo has been lingering on your (Black/lesbian/queer) TBR list too, move it to the top. Make it a priority. This book ain’t for the faint of heart. You must read with care and memory, Read More …

Difficult Women

I recently read Roxane Gay’s Difficult Women and when I finished, I felt like I needed a surgeon to put my heart back together. This collection of short fiction is powerful, at times hard to read, so much so that I’d advise to you read it a story or two at a time. Before my review, a caveat or two: Roxane Gay does not identify as a Black lesbian, which is generally a prerequisite for a book to be reviewed 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 …

The Prosaic Soul of Nikki Giovanni

April is National Poetry Month so it would seem appropriate to sing the praise of Nikki Giovanni. The force behind classics such as Ego Tripping, Cotton Candy on A Rainy Day, and I Wrote a Good Omelet earned her place in the poetry pantheon many times over. While her poetry creates and celebrates wonderful what ifs, her prose addresses a world of what is. The Prosaic Soul of Nikki Giovanni is a collection of essays pulled from three of her Read More …

Rise of the Gorgon

In Rise of the Gorgon, author Tanai Walker peels back fabricated reality to delve into a world that unveils the truth behind conspiracy theories. Elle Pharell is a journalist with a skin thick enough to repel the verbal bullets that conservative pundits throw at her and her mentor/business partner, Anne Humphries, on a daily basis. No amount of grit, however, could shield Elle from witnessing the suicide of her friend Rob Loera, an army veteran with severe PTSD. Elle travels 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 …

Here Comes the Sun

So much can be said about Here Comes the Sun, a story that weaves beautifully written prose through the ugliness of colorism, religion, racism, homophobia, servitude, and neocolonialism— along with other social inequities that plague the Diaspora, particularly in early 1990’s small-town Jamaica. The novel opens with 30-year-old Margot, a prostitute, employee, daughter, sister, mistress, and lover, though she compartmentalizes her identities in a web of secrets, lies, and deception. Margot will do whatever is necessary to ensure her 15-year-old sister, Read More …

I Am Your Sister: Collected and Unpublished Writings of Audre Lorde

Every once in a while, the BLLC Review  will feature a brief, academic-ish review of a non-fiction Black lesbian text. This is our first offering. I Am Your Sister: Collected and Unpublished Writings of Audre Lorde is in part inspired by the opening of the Audre Lorde Papers housed at the Spelman Archives at Spelman College, where co-editors Beverly Guy-Sheftall and Johnetta B. Cole have been faculty and administrators. The Arcus grant that funded the processing of the archives also established Read More …