Twitter Book Club Meeting: Between the World and Me


Mocha Girl Taaji will be hosting our first ever Twitter book club meeting and we are all a little giddy with excitement about it.   So what is a Twitter Book Club Meeting you ask?  Well.  It will be a book club meeting with people talking about, discussing and chatting about one book and all the things, topics and ideas that are in the book.  I know fun right?

Now that you are as excited about this idea I bet you are wondering how to join this Twitter Event.  Here are a few suggestions.


Use the hashtag #mochagirlsread with Twitter

Go to

If you have an account sign in and if you don’t then sign up.

Look for the search box and type in #mochagirlsread.  This will pull up all the tweets that have the hashtag in them.  Twitter SearchAnd you will end up here…

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If you click the LIVE tab you will have updates and see all the things going on.  If you would like to chat as well just Tweet using #mochagirlsread at the end of your message.


But I like using a service that is much faster and gives you better reply time called…TWEETCHAT

This is an easy one step process (If you have a Twitter Account).  Go to the site

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Type in #mochagirlsread and hit the Go button then Authorize button.

Done!  Your in!

So join us on August 8th at 4pm PST, 7pm EST and let’s chat about Between The World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates. 

Celebrating Diversity in Ballet

mgr book news

Recently several members of the Los Angeles chapter of Mocha Girls Read had the good fortune to watch Misty Copeland and Stella Abrera perform in the American Ballet Theater’s (ABT) production of “The Firebird.” Last year Copeland and Abrera made history as the first African-American woman and first Filipino-American woman, respectively, to be promoted to the rank of principal dancer, the highest rank within ABT.

For many years ballerinas of color were often invisible and rarely spoken of. That is changing both in the real world, with dancers like Copeland and Abrera taking center stage, and in the world of books. This post aims to highlight a few nonfiction and fiction books featuring dancers of color.


Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina by Misty Copeland

In Life in Motion the history making ballerina Misty Copeland describes her early life, in and outside the dance studio. In addition to her personal story, Copeland provides a glimpse of what it takes to be a dancer – the daily regimen of class and rehearsals, injuries, even the politics of the ballet world.


The Ballerina’s Little Black Book by Brittani Marie

Brown Girls Do Ballet began as a personal photography project by TaKiyah Wallace to highlight girls of Hispanic, African, Asian, East Indian, and Native American ancestry in ballet programs. Now a philanthropic start-up organization, Brown Girls Do Ballet aims to promote diversity in the arts. Realizing that brown girls need a resource that spoke directly to them, Brown Girls Do Balled created The Ballerina’s Little Black Book, a collection of interviews, advice for aspiring dancers, and stunning photography of brown girls doing ballet.

Taking Flight by Michaela DePrince

Twenty-one-year-old Michaela Prince spent her early years in an orphanage in Sierra Leone. At age four she was adopted by Americans Elaine and Charles DePrince. Her dancing talent began attracting international attention after her appearance in the documentary First Position.  In Taking Flight Michaela and her mother discuss the dancer’s journey from a West African orphanage to becoming of the rising stars in the world of ballet.

The Black Dancing Body: A Geography from Coon to Cool by Brenda Dixon Gottschild

Cultural historian and dance critic Brenda Dixon Gottschild explores race and color in American dance. She discusses the various way the black dancing body is perceived and the implications of those perceptions for dancers and choreographers.



Pointe by Brandy Colbert

Seventeen-year-old Theo is an aspiring ballerina with a lot on her mind. She is one of the few African-Americans in the mostly lily white world of ballet in her smallish Chicago suburb. Her best friend has just returned home after being abducted. Theo struggles to keep up her happy facade amid all the changes in her life, but she is starting to lose control.

Tiny Pretty Things by Sona Charaipotra and Dhonielle Clayton 

Black Swan meets Pretty Little Liars, that seems to be how everyone who’s read it describes this book. Featuring a diverse cast of characters, Tiny Pretty Things follows three top students at an exclusive ballet school in Manhattan.

  Not Otherwise Specified by Hanna Moskowitz 

As a black, bisexual ballet dancer, Etta doesn’t neatly fit into any of the boxes or categories proscribed by her small Nebraska town. That is until she meets Bianca, the straight, White, Christian, and seriously sick girl in her therapy group.


Quote it

Ray Bradbury

Black Men On The Lives That Matter

Alike the book … many men are standing in the gap for justice, African American treatment by law and perspectives on rights. … tells his son a story about being black in this world at a time the world thought it’d never see again. Presently, the world of races is under attack again and there are a few more men taking stands on unequality in America.

Let’s Press Play…

[Read more…]

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Set Outside The US


Top Ten Tuesday is hosted each week by the Broke and The Bookish.

 I’m ready to get back into my Tuesday posts !  I really liked the topic of books that take place outside the United States because they really get us American readers out of our comfort zones.




190571. I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak (Australia)

A few years before  Markus Zusak’s runaway hit The Book Thief swept the world he published this YA novel about a teen taxi driver who starts receiving some mysterious messages.






2.  The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller (Ancient Greece)

This retelling of the story of Achilles through the eyes of his lover Patroclus is about  a fictional version of Ancient Greece inhabited with centaurs, gods and goddesses, but I’m still counting it.




134531043. The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson  (Brazil)

This book is like The Hunger Games, but with a lot more people or color. It’s about a futuristic  matriarchal Brazil  where every year a teenage boy is crowned the summer prince and then killed at the end of the summer.


4. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor (Czech Republic )8490112

This is one of my favorite YA series  ! It follows an art student who was raised by chimera and discovers an ancient war has been waging right in front of her eyes. Taylor paints the scenery of Prague wonderfully and it works so well with this magical book.





5. Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley (Australia)

Another Australian book, but this is one of my favorites. It takes place over 12 hours and follows a group of Australian teens searching for the street artists Shadow and Poet. But what they don’t know is Shadow and Poet are with already with them. I loved this on audio, the accents really brought the story to life.




6. When A Scot Ties A Knot by  Tessa Dare  (Scottish Highlands )

I am not a big historical romance  reader, but I really enjoyed this romance between an woman with social anxiety who creates a fake fiance to avoid her Season and a Scottish captain fresh from the Napoleonic Wars.




7. The People of Forever Are Not Afraid by Shani Boianjiu (Israel)

I’ve stopped and started this book a lot over the years, but it’s an interesting look into the life span of three modern Israeli women.




8. Anna and The French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins (France)17453983

This is the quintessential YA romance about an American girl who is sent to boarding school is Paris and falls for a British boy named Etienne. I like how Perkins didn’t just show the the tourist-y parts of Paris and explores the more eclectic parts of the city.




9. Ghost Boy by Martin Pistorius (South Africa)12204857

This is the memoir of a man who suffers from locked in syndrome and lived for 8 years without anyone realizing it. I thought it was   interesting that despite Pistorius being South African the computer he uses to talk only comes with an American accent and how much of a sticking point that is for his family.






10. The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling24490481

I’m sure this is on every bookworm’s list. This was one of the first books I ever read that didn’t take place in America and it was such a culture shock for 9-year-old me because I had never seen that before.