Monday, May 4, 2009

Conversations Presents Its "Top 20 Summer Reads 2009"

It is one of the most powerful lists that Conversations Book Club puts together each year. The books that make the list are from authors and genres that book club President Cyrus A. Webb have personally read and has put his stamp of approval upon. Now as the first issue in 2009 of Conversations Magazine prepares to be released, the book club is pleased to unveil those who make up the "Top 20 Summer Reads" of 2009!

Listed in no particular order, here are the books and their authors who Conversations Book Club and its 10 chapters feel should be on your "Must Have" list as you make your summer plans:

* "The Chemist" by Janson Mancheski
* "The Fox" by Arlene Radasky
* "The Magic Bullet" by Andrew Neiderman
* "A Voice Behind Thunder" by Carrie Elizabeth Greene
* "The Green Eyed Butterfly" by Kifany Dugger
* "Make Me Whole" by Roishina Clay Henderson
* "Traitor" by Mark Eller
* "Jena's Choice" by Beverly J. Scott
* "Abramo's Gift" by Donald Greco
* "Dead Wreckoning" by Sylvia Dickey Smith
* "When Lightning Strikes" by Keya
* "The Happiness Factor" by Kirk Wilkinson
* "My Heart Has Wings" by Kris King
* "We'll Always Be Pals" by Tom McManus
* "The Smartest Way to Save" by Samuel K. Freshman & Heidi E. Clingen
* "The Marquise Hill Story" bye Sherry Hill
* "Children of Abraham" by R. H. Martin
* "It's All Love" by Marita Golden
* "Lotto" by Joe McDonald
* "Another Life" by Andrew Vachss

Cyrus A. Webb and Conversations Book Club encourages you to visit these authors online and find out for yourself why these books are so impressive. Look for additional information about the authors to be coming from

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Write Stuff Meet & Greet in Jackson, MS: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!

Though the Jackson, MS auditions for The Write Stuff will take place until Saturday, February 14, 2009, those in Mississippi and beyond came out to show their support of the historic event on Saturday, January 31, 2009.
(Seen above: Lateshia Pearson, Zane Bell, Kia Stokes and Joseph Henderson)
(Seen above: Authors Joseph Henderson, Jerome Gentry, Dudley Sykes and Kia Stokes)
(Seen above: Authors Joseph Henderson, Carrie Elizabeth Greene and Jerome Gentry)

Authors/Judges Kia Stokes, Joseph Henderson, Jerome Gentry, Dudley Sykes and Carrie Elizabeth Greene were joined by creators Cyrus A. Webb and Zane Bell, C Jay of The Risque Cafe (Memphis, TN) and other supporters as they celebrated the success of the project thus far. During the evening AJC and The Envelope Pushers entertained those gathered and good food and conversation were had by all.
To see all the pictures from the event, visit this link:

For more information about upcoming events for The Write Stuff visit

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Conversations Most Fascinating Author of 2008: Corey "C-Murder" Miller

In 2007 Conversations recognized New York Times Bestselling author Carl Weber as its "Most Fascinating Author of The Year". Now on the eve of 2009, we are pleased to recognized this year's Honoree...
His name has sparked not only controversy but discussion like few have seen in the literary community. With his first book, DEATH AROUND THE CORNER, being released by Kesington Publishing to rave reviews, it became clear that he was more than just a Platinum-selling recording artist. He was staking his claim to a piece of the literary pie.
Conversations Founder Cyrus A. Webb first was introduced to him in January 2007, and since that time the two have made literary history time and again. Their partnership has been praised everywhere from hiphop websites, Get The Daily News, MTV and even the Chicago Tribune! See links below:

Chicago Tribune

Pro-Hiphop/ MTV News
Get The Daily News
Webb also coordinated the author's first book tour (see detailed report of the historic tour that was covered by dozens of Media outlets including Fox News and The Associated Press here:
as well as that for his author (Jacki-o) once her book was released in 2008.
Webb and this year's honoree also began "The TRU Conversations Hour", connecting music and book lovers worldwide through a weekly talk show.

After helping launch the New Orleans branch of Conversations Book Club in January 2008, the most powerful project the two have been a part of is the HIPHOP AND BOOKS literacy campaign which encourages recording artists to aide in promoting reading abmong their fans. (See and )
Truly this man is more than meets the eye: a respected recording artist, bestselling author and publisher. He has brought another audience to books, and the world is better off because of it. There is no wonder that Corey "C-Murder" Miller is Conversations' "Most Fascinating Author of 2008"!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Conversations Author of the Year 2008-09: John Saul

Shadow Play Entertainment, Conversations Book Club and their literary partners are pleased to announce that International Bestselling author John Saul has been chosen as its Author of the Year 2008-09.
He has been satisfying avid readers for over 30 years with dozens of books which have all become bestsellers. Conversations' President Cyrus A. Webb first read Saul some 20 years ago and has been a fan ever since. "It takes a masterful storyteller to be able to remain relevant after all these years," says Webb,33. "Few authors will have readers scurry to the bookstores or to their computers when their latest book is released, however, John Saul is one of those authors.

Webb reached out to this year's honoree in 2007 and was surprised to hear back from him almost immediately. Saul agreed to an interview with Conversations Book Club during a live discussion at Waldenbooks Metrocenter in Jackson, MS via conference call. In 2008 he agreed to a second interview, this time on Conversations LIVE! Radio, and was heard live discussing his beginnings and his new book FACES OF FEAR.

"It was a dream come true for me," recounts Webb. "My profession allows me to talk with those who have literally helped shape pop culture and have reached milestones that few will achieve. Saul's commitment to his fans and to the craft is not lost among those who read him."

The author had this to say about the recognition by Conversations: "What a wonderful surprise to hear I've been selected as your Author of the
Year for 2008-09. I feel very honored to have been chosen and express my appreciation for the recognition.

"As I'm sure you know, writers tend to be a group of people who have become inured to the process of delayed gratification (when there's gratification at all!) so it is particularly gratifying when someone as passionate about books as you and your Book Club give us your recognition. As I'm sure you know, I haven't been the recipient of all that many awards, so when one does come my way, it means that much more to me.

"Again, thank you so much, and I look forward to joining you and your club for another conversation in the not-too-far-distant future."

To find out more about John Saul, visit

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Authors Respond to Conversations "Best of 2008" Recognition

The response was almost immediate to Conversations Book Club's "Best of 2008" listing. Dozen of emails came in from both the authors who were being recognized for their thought-provoking work and readers who were excited to see either their favorite authors make the list or learn about new authors.

Here are just a few of the kind words spoken thus far:

"I would like to thank Conversations for selecting 'My Secrets Your Lies' as one of the TOP 100 picks for 2008. It's an honor to achieve such recognition. Thanks to the entire Conversations family for your strong support, dedication, and leadership in the literary community. You are appreciated." --- N'Tyse, author of MY SECRETS YOUR LIES
"I would like to Thank Mr. Webb and Conversations Book Club for there recognition of "Gettin' Caught Up Wit' Nina." I appreciate your group picking my book for the "Top 20 Summer Reads of 2008" and now bestowing me with the recognition of one of your 'Top 100 of 2008.'
"Reading is very important regardless of the topic. There is a story for everyone, young and old. Keep up the wonderful work you are doing spreading the "word about reading and Hip Hop." Thank you again for all your support." --- P. Elaine Archie, author of GETTIN' CAUGHT UP WIT' NINA
"To Mr. Cyrus Webb, Conversations Book Club, and all that participated in bringing the book 'I Don't Want to Die All Alone' into spotlight. Words are not adequate enough to extend my debt of gratitude that you have shown me, my family, and supporters. Your hard work, and tireless efforts have subsequently exposed the book to a broader range of readers. All authors that have come your way can acquiesce that the help received have motivated us to a higher level. Thank you so much and continue to inspire all authors and readers." ---Joseph F Henderson III, author of I DON'T WANT TO DIE ALL ALONE
"You can imagine I'm pleased to be in your Top 100! I'd like to express my admiration for your interview skills, Cyrus. Your questions and comments showed a real appreciation for the issues I wanted to explore in Always and Forever and in Forever My Love, novels about the relationships between slaves and slaveowners, culture and conscience. You had clearly read the books with appreciation and understanding of the basic premises, and that led to a much deeper interview than I have had in the past. Thanks to you and your audiences, Cyrus." ---Gretchen Craig, author of ALWAYS AND FOREVER
"It has been such a pleasure working with Conversations Book Club over the past year. The blog talk radio interview with Cyrus was one of the BEST interviews I've ever done. Definitely looking forward to continuing to build this relationship and thanks so much for your support.
God Bless!" --- Sherri Lewis, Essence Bestselling Author of My Soul Cries Out, Dance Into Destiny, and The List
"I am pleased to have my book selected by the Conversations Book Club as one of the top 25 non-fiction books for 2008. Thank you for the opportunity to be interviewed on Conversations Live, and, for this extraordinary honor." ---Kenneth F. Worth, author of HARD TIMES AND GREAT BLESSINGS
" Congrats on so much good work! The Conversations brand is multi-layered. Thanks for including Zoom Power in your Top 25. I really appreciate your support." --- Monica Carter Tagore, author of SACRIFICE THE ONE and ZOOM POWER
"Conversations, thank you for supporting my book, The Enemy Between My Legs. I appreciate you! It is truly an honor to be recognized by such a great book club!" --- Stephanie L. Jones, bestselling author of The Enemy Between My Legs
"I have just listened to our interview several times now, and have also shared it with some family and friends. And each time I hear it, I marvel at your mastery of interviewing technique. It is certainly something that is a talent, because I've seen many veterans of broadcasting not able to accomplish what you do so naturally and easily. Part of the success you have comes from your gentlemanly behavior that puts interviewees at ease. So thanks again for your kind treatment. I wish you all the best in whatever you do in your career, be it hosting of a book club, interviewing on national TV, writing books yourself, or some dream you hold in your secret heart. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and all those you care about."--- Donald Greco, author of ABRAMO'S GIFT (Chosen as one of Conversations Best Kept Literary Secrets, 2008)

Missed any of Conversations' list? See the links below:

Conversations' Top 25 Non-Fiction Titles of 2008
Conversations' Top 25 Musical Performers of 2008
Conversations' Top 50 Fiction Titles of 2008
Conversations Best Kept Literary Secrets of 2008

Enjoy our selections, and remember to share them with your family and friends. This is one addiction that is worth passing around.

Cyrus A. Webb, President
Conversations Book Club

Friday, December 5, 2008

CBC Report: Author Joseph F. Henderson featured by

Conversations Book Club and Shadow Play Entertainment is pleased to announce that author Joseph Henderson (I DON'T WANT TO DIE ALL ALONE) was recently interviewed by our literary partner Joey Pinkney at (see below)
joseph henderson headshot i dont want to die alone book cover

Here is an excerpt:

"Joseph, the sixth child of nine children, describes a sad but shockingly true story of growing up on the streets at a young age. After a life filled with crime, drugs, money, cars, and women, Joe realizes that life and time is catching up to him. He shares with the readers his days of living in below zero temperatures in Michigan with no heat; nightly pit stops through ice and snow to raid the supermarket garbage dumpsters. He talk of feasting on goldfish, turtles, and mallard ducks from the neighborhood park pond.

"Journey with Joe as he tells an all out, no holds barred tale of physical, mental, and sexual abuse. He tells of living in a household where discipline consisted of holding encyclopedias in each hand while balancing on one foot and whippings with electrical cords, brooms, two-by-fours, and garden hoses. After being shot on a street corner, later escaping a drive by shooting, then the subsequent brutal murder of his sixteen year old brother, feel the passion with Joe, as he explains several suicide attempts his family never knew about.

"Feeling he would 'die all alone,' Joe makes a desperate and emotional attempt to apologize and ask forgiveness from family, friends, and foes that suffered during his reign of torment." To read the full interview, visit this link:

Joseph Henderson's memoir I DON'T WANT TO DIE ALL ALONE was also chosen as one of Conversations' "Top 100 of 2008" and he is a member of The Best of Mississippi Class of 2008 for his literary contribution. In 2009 he will be a guest judge and make history as being part of the literary reality show "The Write Stuff" ( . To find out more about the author, visit

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Monday, December 1, 2008

REVEALED: Conversations' Best Kept Literary Secrets of 2008

THIS IS IT: Conversations Book Club is pleased to release its final listing for great reads in 2008! These are books that have become favorites of ours but may not have been on the radar when our other lists were compiled. They are what we call "Best Kept Literary Secrets" of the year. Now that they are known to you, feel free to pass them on to others.
To see the entire listing of books that made this year's listing, visit this link:

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Author M. G. Hardie talks with Conversations LIVE! here!

Missed Conversations LIVE!'s interview with author M. G. Hardie? Listen to the entire podcast here!
M. G. Hardie (author of Every Day Life) talked about what started him on his path as an author, why the book is designed the way that it is and who he thinks will benefit the most from the story he tells. During the course of the discussion he also shows how he deals with the pressures of marketing his book and handling the challenges that come from being a new author. Host Cyrus A. Webb also revealed during the discussion that Hardie's book Every Day Life had been chosen as one of the "25 Best Kept Literary Secrets of 2008" by Conversations Book Club, with the full listing being released on Monday, November 17, 2008. (To see past winners of this acknowledgement, visit For more information about Conversations, visit

Saturday, October 4, 2008

CBC Report: Bestselling author Angel Hunter in Mississippi, Day One

It was a historic day in Mississippi on Friday, October 3, 2008: Bestselling author Angel M. Hunter made her first visit to Mississippi, becoming the 28th author this year to support Conversations Book Club in its encouragement of reading!
Though she has been a friend of Conversations Book Club for over a year, it was the first time the book club President and author had officially met. The afternoon was spent at Wal-Mart on HWY 18 in Jackson, Mississippi. There Hunter spent time signing books for the store as well as talking with book lovers and aspiring authors about her journey from self-publishing to being with one of the most respected publishers in the business.
Among those who came to meet the author were Mississippi authors Joseph Henderson (I Don't Want To Die All Alone) and Kia Stokes (Unbound).
(ABOVE: author Kia Stokes, author Angel M. Hunter, author Joseph Henderson and his wife)
Haven't read any of her titles? Well visit bookstores nationwide to find SISTER GIRLS, FAKING IT, TURNED OUT, SISTER GIRLS 2 and her collaboration with new York Times Bestselling author Carl Weber in A DOLLAR AND A DREAM. Conversations Book Club was pleased to work with Ms. Hunter in coordinating this visit.
(NOTE: Author Angel M. Hunter was also the 50th guest to appear on Conversations LIVE! radio show in 2008. If you missed that interview on Blog Talk Radio, listen here:
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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Conversations LIVE! talks with Bestselling author Angel M. Hunter today at 12p.m. CST

Essence Bestselling author Angel M. Hunter was first introduced on the literary scene for many in 2003 with the book A Dollar And A Dream (co-authored with La Jill Hunt, Dwayne S. Joseph and Carl Weber), and we knew then that she was here to stay. Now with titles such as Sister Girls (1 & 2), Faking It, Turned Out and contributions to anthologies, she is one of the household names in literature that readers will continue to enjoy as time goes on.
On Wednesday, September 17, 2008 she talks with Conversations LIVE! about her remarkable career and she helps the show celebrate its 50th episode on the air since it moved to Blog Talk Radio in June 2008. Join the discussion at 12p.m. CST by listening to the show live at or call-in to listen at 347.426.3645.
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Monday, August 18, 2008

Conversations discusses "The Prayer Chest" with authors August Gold & Joel Fotinos

Join Conversations LIVE! radio show on Tuesday, August 19, 2008 at 10a.m. CST when host Cyrus A. Webb will interview both August Gold and Joel Fotinos, authors of "The Prayer Chest"!They will discuss their literary partnership, the purpose of the book and take your questions! Listen to the show live online at or call in at (347) 426-3645.
In 2007, "The Prayer Chest" was named one of the year "Best Kept Literary Secrets", and in 2008 it has been named one of the summer's "Top 20 Summer Reads" of the year. Come see what all the excitement is about! JOIN THE ADDICTION: Get hooked on books!

Listen to Conversations LIVE!'s interview with Bestselling author John Saul

Citizen Broadcasting - Blog Talk Radio

Bestselling author John Saul has been pleasing as well as frightening readers for over 30 years---and now he joins Conversations LIVE! to discuss his career and new book FACES OF FEAR. This is one you don't want to miss!
This is John Saul's second interview with Conversations and his first full-hour interview since the release of the book six days ago. For more information on the author visit wants to share this with you:
Click on the player or the link below to listen to the Conversations LIVE! with C. A. Webb (Guest Bestselling author John Saul) show

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Monday, August 18, 2008 @ 12p.m CST--- Conversations talks with author John Saul

Monday, August 18, 2008 @ 12p.m. CST --- Conversations LIVE! with C. A. Webb welcomes back International Bestselling author John Saul. The author began working with Conversations in 2007 and has been scaring readers for decades with over 30 titles in print. In a exclusive one hour interview, he will talk live with the Conversations audience about his long career and his new book FACES OF FEAR that was released in August 2008.
Listen live to the interview by visiting You can join the conversations by calling in at (347) 426-3645. JOIN THE ADDICTION: Get hooked on books!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Conversations reviews "The Prayer Chest" by Bestselling authors August Gold and Joel Fotinos

Conversations Book Club is pleased to announce that this week's book review is "The Prayer Chest" by bestselling authors August Gold and Joel Fotinos. The book was also chosen by the book club as one of its "Top 20 Summer Reads of 2008!"

Each week Conversations' Founder Cyrus A. Webb shares information about what he feels should be on your bookshelf. They can be found in print form every Saturday in the Clarion Ledger newspaper (Rankin Ledger insert). To read this week's review, follow this link:

Enjoyed the review? Then join Conversations LIVE! radio show on Tuesday, August 19, 2008 at 10a.m. CST when Webb will interview both authors for the hour! Listen to the show live online at

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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Conversations reviews Bestselling author Erin Gruwell's TEACH WITH YOUR HEART

Conversations Book Club Founder and President, Cyrus A. Webb, is pleased to announce that the book review that appears today in the Clarion Ledger Newspaper is of Erin Gruwell's memoir TEACH WITH YOUR HEART. Many of you may remember Gruwell as the leader of the Freedom Writers organization. She was portrayed by Award-winning actress Hillary Swank in the movie adaptation of her first book. 
(see below)
To read the review, simply visit this link:
NOTE: Cyrus Webb will be interviewing New York Times bestselling author Erin Gruwell during his nationwide radio show, Conversations LIVE! on Wednesday, July 30th at noon Central Standard Time. The show can be heard live by visiting the Web site at Call-ins are welcome at (347) 426-3645.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

CBC Report: Bestselling author Theresa Gonsalves--- July 22,23, 2008

This is been an author visit I have been looking forward to for almost two years. I was first introduced to Bestselling author Theresa Gonsalves in 2006, just before I started the book club. At the time I was simply the editor of the Conversations Magazine as well as interviewing authors for the Clarion Ledger newspaper. I knew very little about her at first, but her book OBSESSIONS drew me in,and I have been hooked ever since.
After interviews, discussions with Conversations Book Club and an exclusive on my radio show, the two of us met each other for the first time on Tuesday, July 22, 2008 to begin her historic visit to Mississippi promoting her two books OBSESSIONS and THE MAN IN THE WOODS.
On Tuesday we began the day at Wal-Mart on HWY 18 in Jackson, MS with sales being made immediately during the first hour. Joining us was book club member and friend Martin Perkins and it was an awesome experience. Almost a case of books was sold during this event, and then we were on to Richard Wright Library in Jackson, MS where we met with other book lovers for a  pleasant end to the day.

On Wednesday, July 23rd, we returned to Wal-Mart for day two of Gonsalves' visit, with more sales being made, more curious readers wanting to ask questions and congratulate her and real conversations had with others who have experienced some of what the author has written about.
It was a pleasant sight to see: book lovers of all ages, races and backgrounds united for their desire for a good read---and Theresa Gonsalves provited that. Even at her hotel, she was able to talk with others about her stories with books being sold there as well along with hearty conversations about why she felt the need to share her story.
A perfect way to spend her first visit to Mississippi---and there will be more to report soon.
Enjoy your day. Enjoy your life. Enjoy Mississippi!  

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Conversations Presents Its "Top 20 Summer Reads", 2008!

"Conversations Book Club ( is pleased to announce its "Top 20 Summer Reads" of 2008. We read and review dozens of books each month, however, these stood out as books we thought would give you that refreshment you need from the regular run-of-the-mill read. During the months of July and August we challenge you to visit your favorite bookstore or online shop and purchase these book that range from nonfiction, self-help, mystery, suspense, erotica, engaging or just plain fun! Believe us: these are the books that we believe readers of any genre will appreciate because the authors have delivered us their best. See a title you have already enjoyed? Then make sure to tell at least 2 people about it and why they should give it a chance as well."

CONVERSATIONS' "TOP 20 SUMMER READS", 2008 (Arranged in no particular order)
1. "Bloggers' Delight, Volume 1 (Love & Redemption)" by Firefly Publishing & Entertainment
2. "One Dead Lawyer" by Tony Lindsay
3. "Final Fling," by Torrian Ferguson & Brian W. Smith
4. "A Street Girl Named Desire," by Treasure Blue
5. "No Place Safe" by Kim Reid
6. "Hiding in Hiphop" by Terrance Dean
7. "Electric Honey" by Sam Love
8. "The Prayer Chest" by August Gold & Joel Fontinos
9. "Gettin' Caught Up Wit' Nina," by P. Elaine Archie
10. "My Life in Porn," by Bobby Blake
11. "Do Travel Writers Go To Hell?" by Thomas Kohnstamm
12. "Pulpit Confessions," by Peron F. Long
13. "Rollin' With Dre," by Bruce Williams
14. "Grown & Gangsta," by Jacki-O
15. "The Enemy Between My Legs," by Stephanie Jones
16. "Obsessions," by Theresa J. Gonsalves
17. "Zoom Power," by Monica Carter Tagore
18. "How To Wow," by Frances Cole Jones
19. "My Soul Cries Out," by Sherri Lewis
20. "Destiny...Interrupted," by Erica N. Martin/Greg O. Jones

"Want to hear from these authors? Many of them will be featured through our website this summer or our internet radio program at We salute the authors and look forward to their next literary treasure." --- Cyrus A. Webb, Conversations Book Club President

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