THE JEMIMA CODE : Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks

THE JEMIMA CODE                                        TONI TIPTON-MARTIN

Women of African descent have contributed to America’s food culture for centuries, but their rich and varied involvement is still overshadowed by the demeaning stereotype of an illiterate “Aunt Jemima” who cooked mostly by natural instinct. To discover the true role of black women in the creation of American, and especially southern, cuisine, Toni Tipton-Martin has spent years amassing one of the world’s largest private collections of cookbooks published by African American authors, looking for evidence of their impact on American food, families, and communities and for ways we might use that knowledge to inspire community wellness of every kind.

The Jemima Code presents more than 150 black cookbooks that range from a rare 1827 house servant’s manual, the first book published by an African American in the trade, to modern classics by authors such as Edna Lewis and Vertamae Grosvenor. The books are arranged chronologically and illustrated with photos of their covers; many also display selected interior pages, including recipes. Tipton-Martin provides notes on the authors and their contributions and the significance of each book, while her chapter introductions summarize the cultural history reflected in the books that follow. These cookbooks offer firsthand evidence that African Americans cooked creative masterpieces from meager provisions, educated young chefs, operated food businesses, and nourished the African American community through the long struggle for human rights. The Jemima Code transforms America’s most maligned kitchen servant into an inspirational and powerful model of culinary wisdom and cultural authority.

My wife and I collect cookbooks so when I came across this book it looked very interesting to me, and I was not disappointed. The author takes you back in time with a look back at the history of the African American cookbook. Some from the 1800’s up to the early 2000’s. You get a personal look at the art work and how the cookbooks changed over the decades. You also get a look at the different types of food and language that was used in a different time. She also gives a look into some of the advertising of the beginning of the 1900’s and the story behind Aunt Jemima which I thought was very interesting. I thought the entire book was done and a great story really of a culture and told through cookbooks. A very good book. I got this book from netgalley. I gave it 5 stars. Follow us at 



Tina Greene can't accept the presumed surfing death of her new husband, without a recovered body. Months after signing the death certificate, the Maui dive shop owner trades mourning for saving her business from bankruptcy. When Jamey Dunn walks back into Tina's Lahaina life things take a strange turn. Dreams of her husband, Hank, have her questioning her sanity and leaning heavily on Hank's best friend, Noble. Jamey is desperate to help Tina but then so is Noble--in a stifling protective way. When Jamey suspects Tina's eerie dreams hold clues to Hank's disappearance, he reveals his unbelievable ability to enter dreams. But for Tina, the decision to let Jamey into her subconscious has a price.
As Tina, Noble and Jamey decipher the mystery of Hank's disappearance, grave danger sets in to reveal one of the three is an imposter, one is flirting with insanity, and one is a liar.


A fantastic story about lost love, overcoming a death, an old love coming back into one’s life, all the while trying to figure out the dreams that she is having hoping to move on with her life. The mystery behind her husband’s death is causing her to stay in one place and not move forward regardless of what she does. Is dreaming or is what is happening to her real? You as the reader won’t be able to piece it together until you get to the end, and even then there are a few twists that make this a very good mystery book. You are taken with Tina and her plight of trying to move forward, but being stuck and the same time. When you come to the end and the story comes together you find out that not everyone who should have been on her side was and that is what surprised me. Just one of the surprises. The characters are likable even the dog, and the description of the scenery, ocean, and other sights on Maui make you feel like you are actually there. Like I said a wonderful story and fascinating book. I don’t like to say more because I tend to give away too much of the story, so give it a read! Follow us at



“Clapton has stirred powerful emotions with his music; powerful and often overwhelming.” 

From the Yardbirds and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers to a later career in film and television, for over fifty years Eric Clapton has been carving out a unique place in music history. 

Brought up by his grandparents, as a child Clapton was a loner, moody and morose. 

Music became his refuge, an outlet for expression, and it was the blues that truly spoke to him. 

Given his first guitar at thirteen, the instrument became an extension of him; even in his groups there would be a constant feeling of being one man with his guitar versus the world. 

Something of a chameleon in his youth, Clapton’s instinct for survival has seen him through a troubled childhood, drug addictions, alcoholism and glamorous affairs. 

Drawing on insights, ideas, opinions and memories from those who know him, in Clapton: Edge of Darkness Christopher Sandford dispels the mythological aura and presents an unflinching account of the life of one of rock’s all-time greats. 

This book about Eric Clapton of course deals with his childhood and the beginnings of his guitar playing. Moves on to some of the first bands he was with until the Yardbirds. The author goes over the songs and differences of the members. He also speaks of the different influences he had also. From their he went to the Bluebreakers, John Mayhall group. He would only do one record with him. He would pick up on his beginning use of drugs, and that would be a focus for part of the book. He also spoke to his lack of friends with some of the other musicians when doing an album. Next he went into Cream and there problems along with the critics view of the work. He would also speak of any concerts that were played in support of the record. Problems with Cream lead to Derick and the Dominos. The author went into how some of the songs were chosen and his beginning friendship with Duane Allman. Allmans death along with Hendrix sent Clapton downward and the band broke up. He also went into briefly about drummer Gordon’s problem and ending up in prison. Sad really. Then more personal information until 461 comes out and the critique’s take on that and every record after that up to From the Cradle. There is a lot about his life up to and after his sons Connors death and the song afterwards. I did not agree with his or the critique’s take on all of the records to this point. Journeyman I thought was and still is one of his better albums. Along with Bluebreakers, he did not talk about a BBC recording with him and Howling Wolf, and other musicians which I have and is an excellent blues record with Wolf speaking on part of it. And the one live record E.C. Was Here is a very good album if you are into blues, but he makes no reference to that album. This book for me was OK nothing great, sorry. If you are a Clapton fan you know it already, if not it is a good read. I got this book from netgalley. I gave it 3 stars. 
Follow us at 

THE HEAT IS ON (The Boys of Summer #4)

THE HEAT IS ON                                               KATIE ROSE

When veteran catcher Connor Jackson gets traded to the New Jersey Sonics, he welcomes the opportunity to possibly cap his career with a World Series ring in his home state. But there’s another reason Connor is glad things have come full circle. In pursuit of hardball glory, he left behind his college sweetheart, the one girl he could never forget. Seeing her again stirs up long-lost desires . . . and this time, he’s determined not to strike out.

A divorced mother of four, Tracy Coleman no longer aspires to gossip-mag glam—but she’ll make an exception for a date with Connor. Their chemistry is hotter than ever, and being alone with him is more seductive than she anticipated. Who could blame her for leaving out a little detail like the kids? Now all she has to do is come clean and convince the man of her dreams that they—Connor, Tracy, and her children—have a future together.

A second chance romance for a baseball catcher getting traded to a team with a chance of going to the World Series, but Connor Jackson is also looking forward to seeing what happened to his college sweetheart that he left behind. She has not left his mind and would like to see her again. Tracy Coleman is not looking for any romance, but when her old flame comes back she is still attracted to him. When they get together they still set of the fire alarms. Though she is extremely happy how she tells him that she has four children, and when do you fit this into a conversation. Will he bail, or stay, but he is the man of her dreams and she is the woman of his and together they make for a good story. Their story is hot and full of passion. Not as easy as he thinks but he must look forward to a new beginning in his life because his baseball life is coming to an end. What will happen? Read and find out a very good story. I got this book from netgalley. I gave it 4 stars. Follow us at


LAST DAYS OF NIGHT                                     GRAHAM MOORE

New York, 1888. Gas lamps still flicker in the city streets, but the miracle of electric light is in its infancy. The person who controls the means to turn night into day will make history—and a vast fortune. A young untested lawyer named Paul Cravath, fresh out of Columbia Law School, takes a case that seems impossible to win. Paul’s client, George Westinghouse, has been sued by Thomas Edison over a billion-dollar question: Who invented the light bulb and holds the right to power the country?

The case affords Paul entry to the heady world of high society—the glittering parties in Gramercy Park mansions, and the more insidious dealings done behind closed doors. The task facing him is beyond daunting. Edison is a wily, dangerous opponent with vast resources at his disposal—private spies, newspapers in his pocket, and the backing of J. P. Morgan himself. Yet this unknown lawyer shares with his famous adversary a compulsion to win at all costs. How will he do it?

In obsessive pursuit of victory, Paul crosses paths with Nikola Tesla, an eccentric, brilliant inventor who may hold the key to defeating Edison, and with Agnes Huntington, a beautiful opera singer who proves to be a flawless performer on stage and off. As Paul takes greater and greater risks, he’ll find that everyone in his path is playing their own game, and no one is quite who they seem.


An excellent story about the age of electricity and bring lights to a city. Who is going to be the one holding the switch sort of speak? Told by or through the eyes of what maybe the attorney Paul Carvath, a 26 year old grad for Columbia Law School. He was hired by Westinghouse, to fight Thomas Edison. You are brought through arguments, fights, a burning building. Looking for Tesla, and any paperwork that would help his case. Edison would prove to be a tough opponent hiring men to undermine the young attorney, and he even felt like he was fighting his own client at times. This historical fiction book takes you back in time and is well written and the author brings the characters to life. All of the characters. You feel like you are their walking the streets of New York getting ready for the turn of the century. Sights, smells, description of trains and just walking around different cities give this book a feel of going back in time. A well written book. I got this book from netgalley. I gave it 4 stars. Follow us at 

1 Rad-Reader Author Interview Weekly Schedule: Author: Here Friday 7 pm PST. : This Week: JANE PORTER

Author: Here Friday 7 pm PST. New Authors added in Red 1 Rad-Reader Author Interview Weekly Schedule May 25 – Jane Port...