–REA NOLAN MARTIN
Last summer I read “Warmth of Other Suns” by Isabelle Wilkerson, so was very eager to follow that brilliant epic tale of black migration with specifics local to one of the primary destinations, Detroit. Having grown-up Catholic in the late ’50s, I was also eager to hear the inside story of Our Lady of Victory. From an historical perspective, this book doesn’t disappoint. Shirley Slaughter writes with precision. She establishes quick trust with her reader by remaining very objective even when reporting situations of obvious frustration. The declarative style may irk those who seek a cathartic experience and deeper understanding of this aspect of the African American story. Although some emotions inevitably do penetrate, for the most part, Ms. Slaughter is true to her task—reporting the facts. I sincerely hope she writes another period piece that explores (interviews?) her own feelings and/or the feelings of other parishioners with another layer of emotional depth. For now, this is a beautiful portrait of an endearing community of hardworking believers who endured much bias and disappointment. I am richer for having read it.
-BRUCE A. BORDERS
This is a remarkable historic account of Our Lady Of Victory, a black Catholic church in Detroit.
I’m not Catholic and not black so a lot of things in the story were unfamiliar to me. However, the author did an excellent job of telling the story and making it all make sense. Very interesting read and well written!
I did not have a preconceived notion as to what this book was about. It turned out to be a self-help guide to nutrition, some exercise, and positive thinking. All of that is right up my alley and the way I have tried to live most of my life. Ms. Slaughter shares deeply painful and difficult times in her life with an abusive husband, the death of her mother, and her personal struggles with major health issues.
I gave it 4 stars rather than 5 only because I felt the writing was stilted at times and perhaps could have been better organized. Thank you for sharing.
The prologue, written in the present, has an optimistic message, and there is cause for optimism on the part of the reader. There are so many lifestyle tips for better health I was amazed to find them all in one book.
The reason behind the advice, sadly, was necessity. Shirley Harris-Slaughter had so many serious health problems, with the supposed “cure” for one making another worse, all she could do was experiment, search for knowledge, and pray.
I didn’t find it an easy book to read, mainly because the events aren’t presented in chronological order, but I applaud the author for having the courage to write it, and share many very personal facts to help others.
Wow! What a story! The author details her life and especially her health issues which she has thankfully overcome. The book is deeply personal and will touch your heart. The author offers great advice about the importance of taking care of one’s own health first. After all, we cannot help others until we help ourselves. Much of the advice is focused on women, but there is plenty to devour in this book. I enjoyed it very much.
I know next to nothing about the newspaper industry, so I found this story to be interesting on a few levels.
Leslie lands her dream job at a Detroit newspaper, but being female, and also African-American, puts numerous obstacles in her way. The story is fictional, but I’m sure the situation was all too real for far too many women.
I did like the story, but it fell a bit flat in places, for me. There was a brief relationship with a handsome Caucasian man that ended so quickly, I’m not even sure why it was included. I wish there had been a little more character development, especially for the secondary characters.
But, as far as giving the reader a glimpse into a minority’s struggle for equality and acceptance, this story succeeds fairly well.
I’m glad I read it, and I think you will be, too.
This book details how a group of concerned citizens came together to prevent a historic train station from being demolished. While this is not a riveting read, it is a great guide for anyone who finds themselves in a community project such as this. Examples are provided, as well as guidelines for coordinating volunteers and conducting productive meetings.