"Jabari Asim is such an elegant writer that you won't realize how smoothly he drew you in until you're halfway through this book. Humane and humorous, compassionate and willing to get a little rough, this describes both the writer and the novel. Only The Strong does for St. Louis what Edward P. Jones has done for Washington D.C., Raymond Chandler for Los Angeles---marked it as place on the literary map where you'll want to stay for a long while. A riveting novel." --Victor LaValle, author of The Devil in Silver
“Only the Strong is a lushly atmospheric and passionately written piece of work, bursting with colorful characters that shine on every page.” ---Bernice L. McFadden, author of Gathering of Waters
"Only the Strong effortlessly transmits Jabari Asim’s profound affection for this book's charismatic and varied characters. This is a vivid, revelatory portrait of 1970s America in the disheartened aftermath of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s death." —Rafael Yglesias, author of The Wisdom of Perversity
"There's an eerie timeliness to the publication of this fictional study of Saint Louis black communities of the 1970s. Only the Strong reminds me of Chester Himes’ Harlem entertainments—in its deceptively light handling of desperately serious subject matter. Jabari Asim is a writer to watch, and to listen to closely, in these difficult times." —Madison Smartt Bell, author of All Souls’ Rising and Zig Zag Wanderer
"It is like stepping into a time capsule of my old neighborhood in the 1970s...to read about Gateway City, Jabari Asim’s fascinating rendition of St. Louis, as an adult brings back memories of time and place, and also admiration for his storytelling." —Susan Straight, author of Between Heaven and Here and A Million Nightingales
Praise for A Taste Of Honey
"A Taste of Honey has the power of memoir and the poetry of fiction. Suddenly, it is 1968 once more, with all of the hope and violence and seismic change that rocked the cities that summer. It's all here and it's all beautifully rendered. This books is a gem." —Chris Bohjalian, author of Secrets of Eden
"Jabari Asim has written a brilliant coming-of-age tale filled with compelling characters navigating race relations in 1968, navigating familial and neighborhood demands, and triumphantly reaffirming what it means to be human. A lovely, lyrical collection of connected stories that will leave readers breathless and ecstatic with passion and joy." —Jewell Parker Rhodes, author of Yellow Moon
"Offering the bitter with the sweet, Jabari Asim's first collection of stories, A Taste Of Honey, serves up a multilayered dish. Asim ranges through and across a Midwestern African American community in the wake of the civil rights movement and the social changes of the last forty years, writing from the inside out and unforgettably bringing to life a world that still is too seldom seen in American fiction." —John Keene, author of Annotations
"Jabari Asim's rich short stories read like a novel . . . full of people we love getting to know—Rose, Gabriel, Pristine, Ed, Reuben, and Guts. I particularly loved the male characters in these pages . . . men who live by their brains and their brawn, shelter their children, their community. They embrace their wives. They love hard, laugh deep, and cry inside." —Denise Nicholas, author of Freshwater Road
"Asim successfully delves into politics, domestic violence, racial identity, young love, and more in this humorous and poignant collection..." —Publishers Weekly
"With his debut work of fiction, the Guggenheim Fellow proves himself to be a promising storyteller." -Library Journal
"This fiction rings true." -Kirkus Reviews
More about Jabari Asim
He is the author of What Obama Means . . . For Our Culture, Our Politics, Our Future,, The N Word
"Whose Toes Are Those" was the 2nd book I've read by Jabari Asim. And, I must say that I was not at all disappointed as I witnessed my daughter rolling in laughter. I found this book from my reading of "Whose Knees Are These," also by Mr. Asim. I placed it on hold at the library and waited in anticipation until it came in because I knew my daughter would love it. And, she did. She loved how I pointed to her toes throughout the entire book. And, as a parent, I enjoyed it because, not only was it amusing to my child, but it also aided in her hearing several different vocabulary words as well. The pictures in the book also complimented the words of the story, and tied it all together for some great family entertainment. I searched for other children's titles from this author. I found none; however, I do hope that he decides to write another one soon...I, along with my daughter, would definitely be 1st in line. I give it 5 stars.
This is a toddler board book that is sure to appeal to any parent and child. The text rhymes well and has a flowing rhythm that could actually be sung. The author poses the question, “whose toes are those?”. The toddler’s toes appear in various poses. The reader catches the occasional glimpse of the child who owns them. It ends with a double page spread turned sideways showing a very happy child and her toes.
The illustrations are soft yet bright, simple and charming. The pictures seem to glow.
This book is suited for one to three-year-olds and will quickly become a favorite of even the youngest toddler.
I thought the first half of the book was really cute. The rhyming pattern is really catchy and I can see children enjoying it, but in the 2nd half of the book where the author basically is just reciting "this little piggy went to the market" is rather dull and doesn't go with the initial start of the book. I felt like the first half of the book was about self-discovery and self-love for the children, which is important, but then it just abruptly stops and goes in a completely different direction. The diverse aspect of the character is great though.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
This board book is a fun exploration that touches on so many different topics while talking about the toes of a cute sparkly-eyed girl. I love the repetition and the use of rhymes familiar to some kiddos (This little piggy...). The illustrations are fun and rough in just the right way. The color scheme is perfect and eye catching. Overall, very fun read for young kiddos.
I have bought more than a dozen copies of this book and Whose Knees Are These by Jabari Asim. It is one of my go-to gifts when new babies are being born. I also occasionally do "random bookings" on public transportation and this one is one that I give. It's joyful, simple, and a great board book.
This is a cute and fun book for very young learners. This book teaches about the human body, especially feet. We see and read about the toes of a young girl. This is a simple book that is just light and fun to read to children. This is a good book for young children.
From the toes it's hard to tell who the person is. These toes obviously belong to a child with brown, not pale, skin, which makes the story of the adorable toes very useful for multicultural communities.
This is a delightful book. Noticing that so many of the people in my granddaughters books are white, I wanted to find board books that are not overt, just normalizing the many looks of humans. These are hard to find. Granddaughter loves it and I am in search of more.
An excellent book for families of colour to read at home with their daughters (the toes are explicitly brown in the text, which is nice). Also a great book for babytimes, where parents can play with baby's toes as you read.
I've read this book over 60 times so I think it should count towards my book challenge. It is a bedtime favorite and my kid has me reread it often. His favorite parts are the page with the cat (it looks like our pet) and the last page. He just loves the last page.