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Whatever Happened to Interracial Love?

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  2,379 Ratings  ·  394 Reviews
Now available in Ecco’s Art of the Story series: a never-before-published collection of stories from a brilliant yet little known African American artist and filmmaker—a contemporary of revered writers including Toni Cade Bambara, Laurie Colwin, Ann Beattie, Amy Hempel, and Grace Paley—whose prescient work has recently resurfaced to wide acclaim

Humorous, poignant, percepti
ebook, 192 pages
Published December 6th 2016 by Ecco
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Aug 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Elegant collection of stories. Fascinating to read fiction from a black woman about blackness in the early 1960s. There is a real edge, a slyness to many of the stories. And there is always a moment in each story where you realize the work Collins is doing beneath the skin of the story. The title story, in particular, is a masterpiece.
Aug 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: those wishing to understand
Recommended to Jaidee by: lovely friend of mine
4.34 " sophisticated, groovy, urban, remarkable" stars !!


This collection of short stories blew my socks off. Kathleen Collins was a black playwright, film-maker and activist. She died much too young at the age of 46 from breast cancer.

This is her only collection of prose and was published posthumously in 2016. Do yourself a favor and pick a copy up. Many of my gal pals will be getting this for their birthday...that's for sure. Dudes this b
Kathleen Collins sadly died at the age of 46, never seeing her own work published. In fact, it went unpublished for close to 30 years after her death, and this collection was only recently released, bringing together stories from her archives. Her daughter sifted through her works and put together an anthology of stories looking at black lives, especially those of women dealing with life, love, and sexuality. They are incredibly modern stories; I mean that if you gave me this collection and told ...more
Jan 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Just finished this. A pretty damn appropriate book to be reading right now. An incredible collection of short stories from the 1960's that feel current and poignant. They all also have several ways in which they could be read and each has a little twist to surprise you. Incredible. Do read.
I don't really know what I expected when I started reading this book.  My only connection to the author was that I had seen the movie "Losing Ground" which I found quirky and odd.  I thought the title of the book was interesting though a bit misleading in terms of actual content and theme.  What I didn't expect was a to find a book written for a cerebral black woman.   Let me tell you, it's a bit like sighting a unicorn.  I was taken aback by its meaningfulness and relevance to me personally.  H ...more
Latanya (CraftyScribbles)
Ms. Collins skewers race, sex, sexism, dreams, dead or alive, academia, and capturing one's truth permeate this lovely short story collection.

The Uncle - Beyond every smile lives pain...5/5
How Does One Say - Short. Sensual. French. 5/5
Whatever Happened to Interracial Love - Various interracial couples find idealism rarely meshes with reality inside the melting pot 5/5
Documentary Style...Misogynoir wrapped in one's desire to succeed as a black man.

The rest of the stories range from 3 t
Colleen Fauchelle
Mar 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-favorites
I am not very good at reading short stories. I personally like reading long stories.
But I really enjoyed these stories.
They show what happens behind closed doors.
They show you need courage to Live
They show you need courage to love
They show you need courage to stand up for what you believe in.
They show no matter what colour we are, We need love, support and acceptance.
I liked the first story 'Interiors' I read it out to my Husband and he said it was poetical.
Just Beautiful.
Book of the Month

At this point in time, I’m finding myself frustrated, concerned, lost and confused at the world around me. It seems like we’re all searching for answers and solutions and trying to find voices that ease our pain and make us feel less alone, even as we take extra care to be open to different points of view.

Whatever Happened to Interracial Love? felt like I dug up a secret time capsule from the 1960s and opened it to find a collecti
Oct 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
There is a rebellious undertone in Collins’ work threading itself through each story. From the daughter who commits the “unforgivable sin of (“Negro”) girlhood” by cutting her hair and therefore turning herself into “any other Negro,” to the man who takes his own life, to the black middle-class girl from New Jersey agrees to marry her white lover in 1963 as they both naively confront the south and racial segregation, Collins presents unconventional resolutions that are not tidy, but instead a fo ...more
I loved it. The stories were written in the 70s and 80s but feel fresh, delicate, light-footed. The stories tell the emotional truth but they tell it slant. Collins' background as a filmmaker is evident; stories are told in monologues and sketches of a director setting up a scene. The stories are cinematic; the emotions are deep but its essence distilled into a character or a moment. It's like a camera utilising time jumps and moving through space, fluidly going back and forth between time, the ...more
Barbara (The Bibliophage)
This collection of quiet, thoughtful stories is excellent. They offer an unvarnished picture of life in the 1960s, a time of unrest that straddled the ages. I happened to read the stories while I was also reading John Lewis's March Trilogy, and they are a wonderful complement to each other.

Collins offers the perspective of an African American woman, yet never letting race be the entire story. The stories are also about friendship, love, family, and making your way in a changing world.

I particu
Shirleen R
Dec 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.5 - After Mar 25, 2017 reread: My favorite stories:"The Uncle", 'Only Once", Whatever Happened to Interracial Love?", " "Lifelines, "Dead Memories.. Dead Dreams" , and oddly enough, "Documentary Style"

Kathleen Collins has a magnificent ear for dialogue whose humor felt light and natural, even when her intense subject wracks her narrators with pain. For example: Miriam and Ricardo's back and forth in "When Love Withers All of Life Cries". Collins alternates two lovers' memories of their courts
Jun 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Pretty good collection of short stories. I think the stories in the first half of the book are better than those toward the end. The earlier stories felt stronger and held my attention better than the later stories.

The title story "Whatever Happened To Interracial Love?" is a favorite, but I think "Interiors" is the best from this group.

I appreciate the author's strong voice and I love her use of race and womanhood as themes.
I had a hard time getting through this, which is a judgement on me as a reader rather than on Kathleen Collins as a writer. Her stories are completely different from anything I've read before, and I particularly loved the title story. But many of the others are short and not immediately digestible; I felt like I had to read each story, pause, and give myself some time before moving on. I found myself getting less out of them as I continued. This will work for someone in the right mindset and moo ...more
Dec 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First book of 2017.


TFW Abbi Jacobson is the guest judge for Book of the Month Club:
Apr 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: short-stories
Collins' writing is pure poetry.
Debbie Smyth
Feb 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've never heard of Ms. Collins before and after reading this collection of short stories, l really mourn her death. These stories are a wonderful window into to the life of black intellectual women during the civil rights movement. Not tales of poverty and crime, but stories of educated women expected to succeed in a white world that is not expecting them. Issues of colorism, class, and social climbing and loss. Her writing style is clear and captivating. The story lines still seem current and ...more
This newly published collection of stories is a short read, not breathtaking or beautiful, but important because of the freshness and rawness of her perspective. It seems unfiltered, unedited, but Collins' appreciation of people for being the multi-faceted, unique people that they are is evident.

The stories sometimes read more like journal entries, and even include self-aware stream of consciousness moments. The setting and historical context are important to the stories, but not foundational.

This collection is full of smart + humorous commentary. I love how Collins comments on bougie black people or on the free-spirited, artistic husband who doesn't acknowledge his wife's labor or commitment. This is so much like her film, Losing Ground. I love it. And Collins is very attentive to language. Beyond her thinking, there's a pleasure in reading her words.

Highly recommend.
Dec 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Such a vibrant and original collection of stories focused on both race and relationships. Only Once, about a whirlwind relationship, was my personal favorite, and I also found interesting how she wrote about race in the title story. While the stories are very short she makes the characters come alive despite having only a few pages to do so. It's a shame she died so young, I would love to see her movie now.
Feb 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"...they could be tall tales full of shit, man, but the words are only icing; you keep going past the words you got nothing but surprises..."

I just really, really liked this.
Kathleen Collins was unknown to me before reading this book. She died young in her 40's, which limited her promising career. She was the first African American woman to direct a full-length film. Only one of her short stories was published during her life and she also wrote plays. She was a film history professor at City College, yet was unrecognized during her lifetime.

The stories in this collection were gathered by her daughter. They provide a fascinating glimpse into relationships between rac
Nov 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own, 2017
Finally picked this book back up after reading snippets and stories here and there. I enjoyed how current and modern-feeling this book was, despite being written decades ago. Not my favorite collection of stories but worth picking up nonetheless.
Dec 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Born in 1942, Kathleen Collins was a groundbreaking filmmaker, artist, and writer - part of the generation of African Americans, many of whom who were "the firsts" in their fields. Her 1982 film Losing Ground was the first feature-length dramatic film directed by an African American woman. When she died from cancer in 1988, she left most of her documents and other works to her daughter, Nina. After years of pouring over this massive cache, Nina began working to get many of the pieces either reis ...more
Feb 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
With this collection of stories, Kathleen Collins has captured feelings that were explored 50 years ago but still feel relevant today. She is witty and deliberate as she digs deep into several aspects of race, class, relationships, personal ambitions, and more.

Learning from Nina Collins, the author's daughter, that most of the stories were autobiographical in some respect was especially interesting. This level of vulnerability and openness on subjects that are still often swept aside or spoken
Sara Klem
Dec 20, 2016 rated it liked it
3.5 stars... Collins has a very distinct style (I suppose it's clearly that of a screenplay writer) which works really well in most of these stories -- I really loved The Uncle. In some cases, this sort of abstract, changing point-of-view, breathless way of writing lost me and it was hard to tell what was going on. For the most part, I loved the stories. They felt intense and relevant and at times overwhelming.
May 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It makes me so sad that Kathleen Collins never published these stories in her lifetime, and thus was never able to see the impact they could have on people. Reading this collection didn't feel like reading at all - not because I felt lost in the world she created, but because her characters and their lives were so utterly authentic that you could recognise them in your friends, your family, yourself. She wrote so eloquently and powerfully about gender and race, yet the message of her stories nev ...more
Juliette Barasch
Nov 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2017
Well, goodreads thinks I read the ebook version of this, which I totally didn't. But I digress. Quite disappointed with this one! The title snatched my attention immediately when this came out, and I had been eager to read it for awhile. I thought I was going to get intimate, complex musings and workthroughs of race, gender, and unjust hierarchy within society, and how that informs romantic relationships between people of color and between people of color and white folks. Additionally, I thought ...more
Sep 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pub-2016, stories
Some of these stories feel like unfinished fragments (unsurprising since these were discovered in a trunk by Collins's daughter after her death) and some are more polished and finished-feeling, but the collection as a whole is just astonishing. Such an intelligence, such a sensitivity, such a wit; we really lost someone special. Now I know for sure I need to track down what's known as her masterpiece, the film "Losing Ground."
Feb 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
Maybe more like 3.5. Lots of compelling material, though much of it feels raw/unfinished/less than shapely as short stories.
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Kathleen Collins was a pioneer African American playwright, filmmaker, civil rights activist, film editor, and educator. Her film Losing Ground is one of the first features made by a black woman in America, and is an extremely rare narrative portrayal of a black female intellectual. Collins died in 1988 at the age of forty-six.
More about Kathleen Collins

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“Life has so many tuneless days... what better posture to take than to become a whimsical motherfucker?” 3 likes
“He rode home with her to New Jersey and she took him into the backyard to look at her father’s roses . . . to look at her childhood, to look at what pricked and stung and was difficult to forgive. He looked at the house and the yard and her family . . . And it seemed to her that everything changed. Was forgiven. The” 1 likes
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