US bookstores celebrate Black History Month

US bookstores celebrate Black History Month

<p>Combining history, reading and even fashion, bookstores have some creative ways to celebrate Black History Month this year. Independent stores in the US are celebrating with unique events, while the larger chains have nationwide displays and are highlighting books on or by African-Americans.</p><p>Borders, which is offering discounts on select titles, is using its online book club to feature Lalita Tademy and her book, <em>Red River</em>, which was published in January. In a press release, Borders explained that the book &#38;quot;centers on one brutal Easter Sunday in 1873 when the Smith and Tademy families joined other African-American residents of Colfax, Louisiana, to protect their newly gained freedom&#38;quot;.</p><p>Rock Point Books, in Chattanooga, Tenn., is focusing on another book, Juan Williams&#39; <em>Enough</em>, with a discussion on Feb. 23 led by Covenant College professor Oliver Trimiew.</p><p>&#38;quot;Trimiew&#39;s discussion will focus on an ongoing debate in the Black community itself about the state of Black America and the causes for continued losses in education, employment, health, and most significantly, questions about Black leadership,&#38;quot; said the store&#39;s website.</p><p>Several Dallas-area locations of Half Price Books took part in the African-American Read-In held on Feb. 3 at the Majestic Theater, said Megan Kuntz, public relations specialist for the store, which has 90 locations in 14 states. Children&#39;s author Christopher Paul Curtis read from his books at the event, which drew a crowd that filled the 2,000-seat theater.</p><p>&#38;quot;The event grew out of a national campaign sponsored by the National Council of Teachers of English and the Black Caucus of the NCTE,&#38;quot; Kuntz explained. &#38;quot;We are also supporting other African-American causes by donating to them our children&#39;s storybook <em>Say Goodnight to Illiteracy</em>.&#38;quot;</p><p>Celebrating the rich fashion and musical history of the black community, Books &#38; Co., based in Dayton, Ohio, is hosting a fashion show based on the photo essay book <em>Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats</em>, by Michael Cunningham and Craig Marberry. The event, in which women from the community model their hats, is hosted by local television personalities and all proceeds go to the Kettering Medical Center Foundation Women&#39;s Wellness Fund.</p><p>&#38;quot;Hundreds of people come each year to witness the black women in their church hats,&#38;quot; said Sharon Roth, director of public relations at Books &#38; Co. &#38;quot;It&#39;s become quite a tradition at Books &#38; Co.&#38;quot;</p><p>The Crowns Hat Show will take place on Feb. 24 and the next day, Books &#38; Co. will feature the Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church Combined Choir for a concert of gospel music. </p>