October 15, 2010

Happy Weekend + Giveaway

A few weeks ago when the sun was still blazing and Summer was hand delivering 90 degree weather at 9 a.m. before breakfast, I was hiding away in my sweltering room getting lost in one of my absolute favorite books read this year. And I know, for the most part I talk product, hair & such on the blog…yet there is always something magical that happens after reading a book that’s ‘unputdownable‘ and compels you to abort all errands previously scheduled for the weekend and boast to all your friends that they MUST read this amazing book!

This happens to me less often than I’d like, but when it does I’m beyond thrilled! Ernessa T. Carter’s 32 Candles is simply candy for your literary brain & any fly femme who’s ever sported a vivacious fro or who’s gotten lost in the captivating world of  smart & humorously addicting chic lit will love 32 Candles.

I need you to understand something…once you start, you will not be able to stop reading, and this is by far my favorite guarantee to offer all my friends who’ve I’ve recommended to read… and after regretfully turning the last page they’d also agree.


Carter’s captivating debut follows Davie Jones, an African American girl growing up in the 1980s in the small town of Glass, Mississippi. Scorned by her mother and classmates, Davie eventually stops speaking and takes refuge in the movies of Molly Ringwald, which promise happy endings for even the most downtrodden social outcast. Davie finds her dream guy in hunky James Farrell, a high-school football star who moves to Glass with his wealthy family. But her dreams are dashed when she incurs the ire of James’ cruel sister, Veronica, after Veronica catches her father visiting Davie’s promiscuous mother. Veronica then plays a mean prank that sends Davie running away from Glass for good, all the way to Los Angeles. There she finds her voice, both literally and figuratively, earning a living as a lounge singer. Davie is content with her life until James crashes back into it, causing demons from her past to bubble to the surface. With all the charm of a clever romantic comedy and peopled by appealing, memorable characters, Carter’s first novel is a winner on all fronts.

To catch up more on  Carter & her debut novel 32 Candles click here for her interview on Fly and here for a great feature on BGLH where she talks in depth about her natural hair journey.

While we’re no longer in the throws of ‘Summer Reading,’ this book makes for an equally fun accompaniment to those colder evenings snuggled up on the sofa & nothing to watch on the tube, and to prove it I’ll be giving away 1 copy of 32 Candles to a lucky reader. *Giveaway starts today and ends Tuesday at 9pm. To enter either leave a comment below, shoot me an email at chai@backtocurly.com with subject heading “32 Candles telling me your favorite book read this year, OR tweet this post to @Chai_Tee. Winner will be drawn at random and notified by e-mail on Wednesday.

Have a Great Weekend!

12 Responses to “Happy Weekend + Giveaway”

  1. GG

    I’ve been wanting to read this book! enter me! :)

    I love your description: “Ernessa T. Carter’s 32 Candles is simply candy for your literary brain & any fly femme who’s ever sported a vivacious fro or who’s gotten lost in the captivating world of smart & humorously addicting chic lit will love 32 Candles.”

  2. Afia-internet Line #

    I heard really good reviews about this book and would love to read it.. So far I have enjoyed reading “Getting to Happy”, Terry McMillan’s new book and ” Red Hat” by Damon Wayans

  3. sarah

    My favorite read this year has been Midnight by Sister Souljah, the prequel to Coldest Winter Ever. It was an interesting read and very different from the novel I read as a teen. I’m looking forward to her extending the series when she writes about Winter’s sister, Portia.

  4. Brittney S.

    Being back in Grad. School, making it through my reading list has been sadly a little more difficult (which is horrible for an AVID reader Luvs) :o( However, I must say that the one book that I absolutely loved reading whenever I could break away from the books is actually a reread from last year called Saving Grace (and the follow-up: Fall from Grace) by Ryan Phillips! Absolutely Fabulous!

    • chai

      I can absolutely relate to the grad school ‘problem.’ It’s become harder to devote time to doing something that was so habitual in my life, but I feel the greatest sense of relief when I do make the time…even it’s just for 10 or 15 min. Have not heard of either books mentioned, thanks for the rec;-)!

  5. Chinye

    I can attest to the school flow cramping my reading style lol. This year has already starting kicking my behind, but like all things I strive to maintain some sort of balance between what I have to do for school and what makes me happy. So now to squeeze things in, I find myself reading books for fun when I’m on the train or bus instead of just sitting there listening to music. It’s taken me almost a month (when I can usually read a book in one weekend!), but I just finished Jump at the Sun by Kim McLarin.

    Her novel takes a look into the life of a accomplished modern woman who appears to have what most people strive for. Advanced degree, loving husband, children, and money easy in the bank. Although she’s living a life most people are still working hard towards, she questions whether or not her life is what she really wants. She seemingly wishes she didn’t have children and regrets leaving her job for the stay at home mom title, although her husband fully supports her decision. The book set in the early 2000s shifts back and forth from her life in the present to the life of her grandmother’s back in the early 1900s to paint a story of her personal development.

    I highly recommend this novel because it gives insight to an internal struggle dealt with by many women trying to maintain a duality between reaping the benefits of years of schooling/hard work (i.e. becoming successful) and trying to figure out what it is you really want along the way. Is it a family? Is it a career? Is it to work hard at your passions? Although I am still in the school faze, working towards my career, I can identify with trying to find answers to all those questions. If you have a chance, I definitely recommend picking up Jump at the Sun at the library!

    • chai

      wowie…that was an easy sell, thanks for the amazing recommendation! I hear you though, I’ve been forcing myself to finish this book for the past 2 weeks and it’s getting tougher by the day. Need to find some quiet time and just commit to it because it’s something that I do enjoy, would hate for it to feel like a chore. Meanwhile…by ‘to read’ list is growing longer by the day, lol….but this I rarely seem to mind.

  6. BrownGirl

    This one’s been on the tbr all summer so I hope it’s me. :)

    So far, my fave read this year has been Girl In Translation by Jean Kwok. It’s a wonderfully written coming of age and immigrant story.

    Thanks for a great giveaway!

  7. Akilah

    Great giveaway. I already have the book, and all I can say is WOW! Ernessa did a brilliant job with the story of Davie Jones, and it’s the type of story you savor word for word, hoping that by some miracle, the story has no ending, so you can continue to be a part of the experience. It’s a fantastic read for sure!!

    • chai

      wasn’t it a great read! I remember clutching the book to my chest after flipping the last page because I was sooo happy, yet sad it was over, lol. Davie will always have a special place in my heart. But an even greater gift to know Ernessa will be dishing out even more reads in the future…fingers crossed!


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