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: