Starting Your Dreams Later In Life and Embracing the Detour

Jenee Darden speaking at Creative Mornings I know it's been a while since I've posted anything but that's because of my job. I'm working as a reporter covering Oakland and I host an arts segment on the radio where I get to interview amazing artists from around the Bay Area. Plus I'm publicizing my book  and building my speaking career!  You know what's funny? I thought this would all happen by the time I was 27-30.  Nope. That wasn't God's plan for me. I'm finally beginning to do the things I've wanted to do and I'm almost 40 years old. Some people reading this who are 40 will say 40 is still young. But some younger people reading may think 40 is nearly ancient. But I'm writing this post for those who like me, thought their career and personal dreams would come true much early in life. I'm here to tell you not to give up.  You know, death inspires life. A number of my relatives and friends have passed away, ranging in

BlogHer Book Club Review
If You Think Push was a Tough Read, Brace Yourself for The Kid

Don’t be fooled by the title of Sapphire’s latest novel, The Kid. There’s nothing childish about this follow up to her first novel Push. I’m woman enough to admit it that it took me 12 years to read “Push” because I was scared. I didn’t know how I would handle reading the story about Precious Jones, an illiterate, obese, black teenager pregnant by her father and abused by her mother as well. Push is a brilliant novel and emotionally challenging to read. But The Kid makes Push look like the minor leagues when it comes to the graphic scenes.

The story starts with nine-year-old Abdul Jones preparing to bury his mother Precious. Our Shero, who left an abusive home and sought education, lost her battle to AIDS at 27. The health care system failed her by not providing her medication she couldn’t afford. But Push fans will be happy to know that Precious grew into the woman and mother we hoped for. Precious became literate, wrote poems, went to college and exposed her son the arts. She encouraged Abdul to always ask questions and protected him. She reared a bright boy. I loved the character Precious and was so proud of her. It hurt to read that Abdul was going into foster care -- another system that would ruin all his mother hoped for. Although he’s The Kid, Abdul’s childhood dies when his mother’s coffin closes. He grows up brutally fast. 

Read the rest on Warning,the remainder of the review includes content that discusses child abuse and rape.