Cynthia Highsmith-Hooks,
The Soul of a Black Woman:
From a Whisper to a Shout

(Xlibris, 2002)

The Soul of a Black Woman: From a Whisper to a Shout is an excellent book of poetry written by Cynthia Highsmith-Hooks that addresses the real issues that children deal with when a parent walks out on them. Whether the decision was intentional or unintentional doesn't lessen the pain for a child, and that aching, longing and emptiness are all demonstrated in the soul-stirring words of Highsmith-Hooks' poems.

Obviously drawing on her own experiences, she describes the hurt when her father left, her fruitless desire to convince him to stay and the inner turmoil she had to cope with as she grew. She was confused by his visits, which seemed to stem as much from his own guilt as it was from missing and loving her, and she felt a share of bitterness at his ability to move into a new life while hers was left in limbo.

After reading the poetry in her book, one can't help but cheer for her. Her poems were written to help her cope with a part of her life that had to be very confusing. You'll find yourself wishing you could remember each and every poem word for word.

In the back of the book, Highsmith-Hooks also introduces her amazing ability to write extraordinary fiction. Without a doubt it's plain to see that the very best is yet to come for Cynthia. She's undeniably a true talent.

by Renee Harmon
5 May 2007

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