I don't know how many readers of this blog are also readers of books. I'm an avid (some would say rabid) reader. I've been reading since I was four, anything and everything I could get my hands on, I would read. For a few years, I was a freelance editor, editing books by unpublished authors. I got to read a lot of good stuff, but one author stood out in front of all the others. His name is Daniel Omotosho Black. I read his manuscript for "They Tell Me of a Home" and I knew that he needed to find a real publisher (I was freelancing for what was basically a vanity publisher) and that his book was real literature. I also know that one day, he is going to be a famous author. I told him to go find a real publisher and make sure they publish They Tell Me of a Home in hard back. It deserves to be a real book.
If you've ever read Claude Brown or Alex Haley, you have a feel for the type of writing Daniel does. He writes from a rural perspective, deep, segregated South. They Tell Me of a Home was picked up by St. Martin's Press a few years ago. His second book, The Sacred Place, was published by St. Martin's as well, and he just finished his third novel. If you love to read, go to your library and ask them for They Tell Me of a Home. Really. It is a story that can't be put down. I remember opening the manuscript and seeing a poem on the first page. I rolled my eyes and thought "Oh no!" I had to read a few really difficult manuscripts as an editor, in genres that were so far out of my realm of interest and I thought this was another one. I couldn't have been more wrong. When I read the first page (after the poem), that was it. I read every single page in one sitting, and that includes the editing. I couldn't stop reading.
Why am I telling you all of this? Because the stories Daniel writes should be celebrated. I haven't read a lot the last few years. There's something about being an editor that kind of ruins reading for fun. I notice mistakes, and it drives me nuts. They called me the grammar police where I used to work because I was always correcting spelling and grammatical errors. I still do (even though I make enough of them, I try to edit my posts after I publish them to try to correct them), and since I have trouble reading without finding mistakes, I don't read a lot. Daniel Omotosho Black is one exception. His books, and Harry Potter. That's it, and you couldn't get more different stories. Harry Potter is wonderful in an escapist sort of way. They Tell Me of a Home is so emotionally captivating that when I was finished reading it for the first and the 10th time, I was exhausted in that good way that only real literature can do to the mind.
I can't wait for book three to be published and I know that once you read one of his books, you will want to read everything he writes. He has sent me some of his short stories over the last few years, and every story he writes is amazing. There aren't many writers who can write stories that I get completely lost in anymore. If you like a really great read, go to the library and ask for the book, or go to Amazon and buy it. You won't be sorry to own his books.