J. California Cooper


Born
in Berkeley, California, The United States
November 10, 1931

Died
September 20, 2014

Genre


J. California Cooper first found acclaim as a playwright. The author of seventeen plays, she was named Black Playwright of the Year in 1978. It was through her work in the theater that she caught the attention of acclaimed poet and novelist Alice Walker. Encouraged by Walker to turn her popular storytelling skills to fiction, Cooper wrote her first collection of short stories, A Piece of Mine, in 1984. Called "rich in wisdom and insight" and "a book that's worth reading," A Piece of Mine introduced Cooper's trademark style: her intimate and energetic narration, sympathetic yet sometimes troubled characters, and the profound moral messages that underlie seemingly simple stories. Two more story collections followed on the heels of A Piece of ...more

Average rating: 4.4 · 19,242 ratings · 942 reviews · 22 distinct worksSimilar authors
In Search of Satisfaction

4.45 avg rating — 3,105 ratings — published 1994 — 6 editions
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Some Love, Some Pain, Somet...

4.51 avg rating — 2,425 ratings — published 1995 — 8 editions
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Family

4.40 avg rating — 2,143 ratings — published 1990 — 11 editions
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Some Soul to Keep

4.51 avg rating — 1,590 ratings — published 1987 — 3 editions
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Homemade Love

4.49 avg rating — 1,524 ratings — published 1986 — 9 editions
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The Wake of the Wind

4.46 avg rating — 1,469 ratings — published 1998 — 4 editions
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Life Is Short But Wide

3.97 avg rating — 1,668 ratings — published 2009 — 10 editions
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The Matter Is Life

4.52 avg rating — 1,054 ratings — published 1991 — 5 editions
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Some People, Some Other Place

4.38 avg rating — 1,123 ratings — published 2004 — 5 editions
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A Piece of Mine: Stories

4.51 avg rating — 1,010 ratings — published 1984 — 6 editions
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More books by J. California Cooper…
“Love entered in my heart one day
A sad, unwelcome guest.
But when it begged that it might stay
I let it stay and rest

It broke my nights with sorrowing
It filled my heart with fears
And, when my soul was prone to sing,
It filled my eyes with tears.

But...now that it has gone its way,
I miss the dear ole pain.
And, sometimes, in the night I pray
That Love might come again.”
J. California Cooper

“I was foolish because I believed in you. You are a fool because you believe in yourself!”
J. California Cooper, In Search of Satisfaction

“Don’t bury it, use it. Don’t keep it in, give it away. Don’t turn that love in, turn that love out.”
J. California Cooper, Some Love, Some Pain, Sometime: Stories

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