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Intimate Chaos Paperback – July 1, 2005

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 221 pages
  • Publisher: Dodi Press (July 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0976727307
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976727309
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,476,910 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Anyone who has ever loved someone, lost them, or been the recipient of unconditional love will be able to relate." -- Tee C. Royal, The Rawsistaz Reviewers

"Finally! An honest, raw, emotional work that speaks to the heart of women everywhere!" -- Lynne M. Womble, Sable Magazine

"Intimate Chaos is a heart wrenching story about love lost and found." -- Esther "Ess" Mays,

About the Author

A native of Toronto raised in Miami and now living near New York City, Clarke is the author of two previous novels, "Foundations: A Novel of New Beginnings" and "Different Trees From the Same Root." She has also published poems and short stories in various literary magazines. She was a keynote speaker at an African Asian Latin Lesbians United conference and has performed at various African American events. In her spare time, she volunteers to New York Cares literacy and meal projects and the All Stars Talent Network.

More About the Author

Raised in Miami and now living in southern New Jersey, Cheril N. Clarke is the author of five novels, "Foundations: A Novel of New Beginnings" (2001), "Different Trees from the Same Root" (2003), "Intimate Chaos" (2005), "Tainted Destiny" (2006), "Losing Control" (2009) and one play, "Intimate Chaos." She has been featured in Curve Magazine, the nation's best selling lesbian magazine, The Princeton Packet, Philadelphia Gay News (PGN),, Out IN Jersey, EURweb, Burlington County Times,,,, Sistah2Sistah Magazine, Clik Magazine as well as Crain's New York Business newspaper, among others. Her opinion columns have been featured by the National Coalition of Black Justice. Clarke has also published poems, short stories and reviews of hip-hop spoken word theater in various literary magazines. Her editorial work has appeared in About Magazine, and on Clarke was a keynote speaker at an African Asian Latina Lesbians United conference and has performed at events organized by African American Lesbians United for Societal Change.

She is currently working on the second installment of her brand new series, "The Beautiful People."

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers on April 19, 2005
Format: Paperback
Almost everyone has experienced an unhappy or bad relationship at one point or another in their lives; it just happens. But in how many cases does the unsatisfied person continue to fight for the relationship, hoping that one day their love will be reciprocated? This is what happens in INTIMATE CHAOS by Cheril N. Clarke. One spends all her time giving and showing love, the other spends her time taking and running from love. Knowing it's best to move on, but failing to take action, Sadira Cooper continues the up again, down again romance with Jessie, ignoring the obvious signs Jessie gives her and feedback from those around her.

Eventually Jessie commits to the relationship and the lesbian couple move to another city and buy a condo together, making their relationship official. Unfortunately, being a couple is not much better than the times they spent dating. Jessie is incapable of showing her love to Sadira and Sadira is unwilling to just let it go, for good. When her eyes begin wandering towards a new woman in the neighborhood, Sadira scolds herself and tries to stay the course with her relationship. Jessie doesn't really know how to show her love. Though she has strong feelings, she holds them back, afraid Sadira will eventually hurt her. When she opens up a bit more and shares her feelings, will it be what the two need or will it be too little, too late?

INTIMATE CHAOS was a slowly paced exploration of love and the journey taken through the various pit stops on its course. Sadira's emotions made this novel speak to me in many ways, but specifically her hunger for Jessie. I felt her pain, her happiness, her desires, and her love.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Nu Mantra on May 21, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It almost pains me to write this review, as I am about supporting my sistahs' creative efforts - so long as they really are creative. This book has a great popularity among Black Lesbians simply because it tells a story that graces too few texts. For this, Black Lesbians feel compelled to go out and buy it; finally, some voice given to the complexities of our lives. Well, maybe. While I commend the author's courage in telling the story, it is not a well-told story. The plot is thin and repetitive. The characters lack depth, and well.. Character! The author DOES have talent as a writer, but it is not used well as this short novel would have worked better as a short story. There simply is not enough here to carry a lengthy work. The book reads like a Lesbian chat relationship on the rocks. There is sudden intense attraction that is spurred on by anonymity and fantasy of what one hopes a person should be. There is even the proverbial pick-up and move to another state without any true relationship foundation storyline here. In fact, in the foreword, the author says that the story was born out of chat conversations. The dialogues read like such. As a short story, Clarke might have done a superb job. I am reading this book with a group of Black Lesbians and across the board we agree that there is not enough of a plot her to make a good, strong novel, even though it does tell a common tale amongst Black Lesbian circles. Hopefully, Clarke will continue to write and develop her craft. She does make good use of humor and perhaps is just touching the surface of portraying human emotion, but if you want to read a very well-written novel about Black Lesbian/Women relationship and our emotional, socio-psyche complexities read Odessa Rose's Water in a Broken Glass. Otherwise, you can go to a Black Lesbian chat room and watch this type of story play out!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jenny J.J.I. VINE VOICE on March 13, 2007
Format: Paperback
"Intimate Chaos" is one of those books that takes you on a journey from bliss to turmoil and back again with its dramatic twists and turns. That to me keeps me interested in a book all the way down to the very end. In this book we have Sadira, who's desperately searching for love and intimacy, finds Jessie, who displays a desire to be loved but runs from it when it is given to her. These two women struggle to learn lessons from past mistakes and apply them to future attempts at making things right. Waves of sabotage and temptation crash against their already unstable foundation which ends up testing the strength of their relationship.

After reading this book I felt a lot of resentment and sympathy for Jessie, as for Sadira she got under my skin quite a bit because she seem too needy to me. My initial thoughts were of 'lots of physical action between the main characters'. However the book takes you on a journey of character insight, the love, pain, heartache, fun and happiness. Your eyes are opened to the fact that even though its a same sex relationship, they go through everything that heteros do.

Cheril N. Clarke done a great job with "Intimate Chaos"! She tells the story from the heart through pain, erotica, and the unknown. I think any woman could find herself in these predicaments but most of all through this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Da Honest Truth on August 30, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Many years ago, I was (and still am) a member of LS. The place where the story of Jesse and Sadria got its start. I remember reading the small bits and pieces, and even getting a personalized email from Cheril herself with a few chapters. I was hooked. I wanted the book when it came out. But having been down for long financially, I wasn't able to buy it until I was honestly reminded of the books existance by rejoining LS.

I have had Cheril on my friends list on several sites, but me being a privy type person, disliking advertisements, and the mear fact of just having people on my list to have them there, started deleting people whom I didn't actually know personnally.

Now having bought the book, i braced myself for the upbeat energy, I once had between 6-8 years ago when the story first was breached to me. I settled in for a long night, even after working a 13 hour day, I wanted to finish. I struggled. I could hardly tell who was who from reading the words, having to go back a few pages multiple times to make sure that who ever was speaking was who I thought it was, then if it wasn't then why did it not sound like it.

Now while Cheril does have great writing skills, this book I am sad to say, does not stimulate me in any way. Now I have the second book (only cause I bought them together and both had been shipped within a day of each other). I will read it, and hope it fairs better than "Intimate Chaos" did with me. So as soon as I finish the lot of other books order at the same time (cause really all I have to do in the desert is read), I'll jump on the other one, and pray to not be disappointed.

And the reason I gave it two stars is only because I support black fiction writers, and because we are both in the same group.
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