Saturday, May 8, 2010

'What's Really Hood' by: Wahida Clark

You know… the people that put down “street lit” are real idiots. Just because something is labeled “street, hood, or ghetto” does not mean that it doesn’t have any literary value OR that it doesn’t appeal to people. This book here, it appealed the hell out of me. Collections are always tricky because there are going to be some stories that carry most of the weight and others that are just along for the ride. I didn’t get that feeling from this book. I enjoyed every story in there. Yes, I enjoyed some stories more than others but that was because of personal preference NOT because of content.

If you’re specifically looking for a collection of street lit, then seriously. Stop here. The stories told between these covers are raw, offensive, and unforgiving. Oh, and let’s not forget sexual. Thugs and thug-ettes gotta get some too right? Whatever. It’s almost like the streets of New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia birthed these stories themselves. You know how like Athena popped out of Zeus’s head full grown? Same thing.

Every one of the author’s in this book holds their own weight. While the styles may be different, the one thread that holds it all together is the love, the hate, the swagger, and the power of the streets. My favorite one was ‘All For Nothing’ by Shawn “Jihad” Trump. There was just something about Jihad and Crook’s story that was just plain damn good. You can sleep on this book if you want. You’re a fool if you do. Wahida Clark has already shown her talent as an author. Her talents as editor are just as impressive.

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