Halle Berry's Bookshelf
By Trisha R. Thomas
The novel deals with black culture and the many stereotypes that we try to overcome. Many black women grow up thinking that they're not as beautiful as white women (and some of us get nose jobs and fake hair to make us look more white). The main character thinks her boyfriend is going to give her an engagement ring. Instead he brings her a puppy. Not only does she decide to leave the guy, but she also cuts her hair off and wears it in a short Afro. She'd been very proud of her long, stick-straight hair (for years she'd had it chemically processed to keep it that way). She gets rid of the thing that she thought was most beautiful about herself and realizes what was most attractive wasn't her physical self, but her spirit. I think it's an especially good book for young black women to read. I've been there—I wish I'd had this book 15 years ago.