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Jewels: 50 Phenomenal Black Women Over 50 Hardcover – Bargain Price, April 11, 2007

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Hardcover, Bargain Price, April 11, 2007
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Photographer Cunningham (Crowns) and popular novelist Briscoe (Big Girls Don't Cry, etc.) honor 50 women, more than half over 60, in this collection of stunning photographs and inspiring personal recollections. While a few have officially retired, none of these women can be described as retiring. "I'm having a wonderful time being exactly who I am at the age that I am," says one, reflecting the general sentiments of this diverse group, which includes a financial consultant, reading specialist, sign language interpreter, tax lawyer, real estate broker and a bookstore owner (Clara Villarosa). Some are familiar (e.g., Ruby Dee, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Nikki Giovanni, S. Epatha Merkerson), but most are not. Several are involved with powerful institutions little known outside the black community—sororities, women's clubs and service organizations. Tucked into their succinct narratives is a surprising abundance of practical advice about maneuvering between the worlds they have survived and mastered (corporate, military, entertainment, government, entrepreneurial). Some recall hard knocks, having faced deaths, depression and divorce, cancer, a child with Down syndrome and teenaged pregnancy, but all acknowledge the helping hands of parents, grandparents, teachers and mentors. This book will have special resonance for black women, but offers its inspirational message to all. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Photographer Cunningham and best-selling novelist Briscoe offer a stunning photo-essay tribute to 50 black women over the age of 50 who defied racism and sexism to realize rich lives of accomplishment and personal satisfaction. Each striking black-and-white portrait accompanies a personal essay as the women often recall the people who came before them, inspiring them to achieve and admonishing them not to allow themselves to be defeated by the limitations they faced. The women also recall many firsts: the first black woman to achieve some status in the nation to the first black woman (or person) in her family to get a college degree. The subjects include celebrities and noncelebrities in medicine, education, business, and social activism. Among the jewels are Ruby Dee, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Marian Wright Edelman, S. Epatha Merkerson, and Briscoe herself. Poet Nikki Giovanni is also here and contributed an original poem in tribute to the achievements of black women. A beautiful and inspirational book. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (April 11, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316113042
  • ASIN: B0032Z6YSM
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,651,079 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Award-winning photographer Michael Cunningham collaborated with New York Times bestselling novelist Connie Brisco to bring us a beautiful photo essay book about women over 50.

Jewels profiles 50 women who are African-American. Cunningham's photos, as in his fabulous Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats, captures their strength and spirit, their energy and enthusiasm, and their pride and confidence.

Connie Briscoe adds her crisp prose from interviewing the women to show why each one is a "jewel."

Some names I recognized--people in the public eye like actors, poets, public leaders such as actress Ruby Dee, S. Epatha Merkerson (the detective on Law and Order), Hattie Winston (the snappy nurse on TV's Becker) and of course, Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of Children's Defense Fund. Some others are company presidents and leaders in business, education and the community.

Most of the women gave a lot of credit for their upbringing for making them who they are. They received love and stability--and were made to believe they could shoot for the stars. These women seized opportunity, while others created it.

Many overcame humble beginnings, early death of parent, divorce, and disability. The key for many seemed to be the unwavering expectation that they do well--regardless.

"My life is proof that you never know what you have inside you until it's called upon. I know I didn't." -- Patricia Banks, age 71.

Just imagine the changes someone like Billie Allen, 81, actor and director, has experienced as a black person--and as a black woman in her years.
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Format: Hardcover
this Book truly showcases Black women in full detail. this Book captures Black Women over and 50 and Beyond with there words,Wisdom and uplift. Connie Briscoe does a fantastic job at interviewing. all 50 women. Michael Cunningham does a Great Job here as well. you hear stories of overcoming so many obstacles and maintaining a level of still striving for more. you learn that a strong upbringing and Love along with family made these Women strive for more than what was said or expected. Ruby Dee looks fantastic and is timeless as are the other African-American Women Profiled in this Book. very enlightening and detailed.
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Format: Hardcover
It was so wonderful to see so many strong African American women who are in so many fields. I gave it as a gift to a family member for Christmas and it was passed around so much, everyone wants a copy! Kudos to the photographer for capturing the personalities of these remarkable women.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I absolutely love this book! It's so inspiring not only for women, but anyone. It spotlights strong black women from diverse walks
of life, that are still fierce over 50. Highly recommend...a great read!!!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
These women came from such varied backgrounds, and, still made their mark in history! This book sits on my coffee table, so, I can pick it up and just open to any page and be inspired at any time.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Highly enjoyed the book. Am familiar with most of the women, and their accomplishments, that was included in the book. However, loved seeing pictures of them and re-reading about them.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My special friend just turned 50, so I surprised her with this book. She was thrilled and gushed joy and excitement over getting such a remarkable gift.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Some of these phenomenal black women I had never heard their names before, but it was an honor and a pleasure to read of them.
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