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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Celestial Blue Skies Book Signings

Celestial Blue Skies
I will be Signing Purchased Copies of My Novel at 
The Community Bookstore
2523 Bayou Rd. 
New Orleans
on
JUNE 28, 2014
I will also READ excerpts from my novel
including the Curse of the Mulatto
Please email your friends about this event.
I will also be at the 
LOUISIANA BOOK FESTIVAL 
on November 1, 2014 as a featured Panalist
My novel was a finalist in the William Faulkner William Wisdom Worldwide Contest
It has been recognized by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities
I am a Fellow with the Center for Black Literature in New York
Thank you for coming to my website.



Praise for Celestial Blue Skies Reviews

Maggie Collins’ mesmerizing novel takes us deep into the hearts and minds of a Louisiana creole family struggling to maintain their dignity and traditional values within an uncompromising world full of poverty, superstition, and intolerance. Celeste, the main character, must navigate through the rigid cultural code demanded from her family as she strives to transcend the bad reputation her mother has acquired in the community. She soon learns that those demands, although at times brutal and suffocating in the hands of her grandmother and matriarch, Maymay, come from a source of genuine love and caring. The values she learns from her family are what eventually guide her towards a stronger sense of self and a better, self-fulfilling life. A fabulous read, full of engaging complex characters and fascinating situations, Celestial Blue Skies, invites us to consider that at times the only type of love that can help us survive is an exacting, fierce one. --J.L. Torres, author of The Accidental Native and Boricua Passport Editor Saranac Review


 Maggie Collins writes about real people who live on the page. Celeste Bastille is a young woman who will win the reader and stay in her memory. Most of the characters are as vivid as Celeste and they are a family. As much as you want Celeste to find happiness in her own life, the family needs her. Collins weaves a tale as intriguing as the folktale that is the basis for the book. Celeste earns her Celestial Blue Sky. ~ Lee Grue, Editor, The New Laurel Review

It isn't often that I get to visit Creole homes in southwest Louisiana and just listen. I like to tell my friends here in Europe that New Orleans is a city of tribes who are more or less friendly to one another. Within the black community there are tribes with complex differences, within the white community there are tribes. But the tribe I love the most is the tribe of the heart. Ms. Collins is surely part of that. Celestial Blue Skies is a book of the heart. It describes a Creole family in southwest Louisiana some few years ago, with the authority of an insider. I found myself peering through watery eyes a number of times. Truthful books touch you that way. ~ Gordon Walmsley, Editor, The Copenhagen Review

Praise from Other Readers
 This book had me shaking at Chapter 3. I haven't read something like this since Sugar by Bernice L. McFadden.
Debbie Knatt Jones

Growing up in Louisiana in a small town and a Creole family, I was able to relate to this book. Of course it had the boudin, crackling, hot crawfish and crabs, the sugar cane and the Zydeco music that we Creoles love, but most of all, it had the love of family Maymay is like so many creole women I know. She holds the family together durning a crisis.
If I could tell the author anything, I would tell her thank you for writing this book because it reminded me of the love that I had with my grandmother. I had a digital copy but my son got me a hard copy for Mother's Day. Truthfully this is one of the best books I have read in a long time.

Terry Noel




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Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Celestial-Blue-Skies-Maggie-Collins/dp/069202347X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398824637&sr=8-1&keywords=celestial+blue+skies
Barnes and Noble
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/celestial-blue-skies-maggie-collins/1119365514?ean=2940149550692

In Belle Place, Louisiana, where the sugarcane grows a mile high to the bright blue sky, Celeste struggles with her mentally ill mother, Tut, and works with her grandmother Maymay to hold the Creole Bastille family together. Celeste has bigger dreams for her life, and is falling for the handsome and wealthy Vashan. But, when Tut runs away to live with the man she met working in the sugarcane to escape her reputation as the town whore, Maymay fears that Celeste will end up like her mother. And just as things are finally looking up for Tut, her past returns with violent, tragic results. Will Celeste end up like her mother, or will she redeem her family from the hoodoo curse that haunts them? And will she find love with someone from a culture just as exotic as her own?
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Maggie Collins was born and raised under the clear blue skies of Loreauville, Louisiana. She majored in English at the University of Louisiana and later earned a Master's degree from the University of New Orleans. An excerpt of this novel was published in "Louisiana Cultural Vistas" and was a 2009 finalist for the worldwide William Faulkner William Wisdom writing contest. She is a Center for Black Literature fellow and an Educational Diagnostician. She lives with her two sons and wonderful husband




 Praise for Celestial Blue Skies

Reviews Maggie Collins’ mesmerizing novel takes us deep into the hearts and minds of a Louisiana creole family struggling to maintain their dignity and traditional values within an uncompromising world full of poverty, superstition, and intolerance. Celeste, the main character, must navigate through the rigid cultural code demanded from her family as she strives to transcend the bad reputation her mother has acquired in the community. She soon learns that those demands, although at times brutal and suffocating in the hands of her grandmother and matriarch, Maymay, come from a source of genuine love and caring. The values she learns from her family are what eventually guide her towards a stronger sense of self and a better, self-fulfilling life. A fabulous read, full of engaging complex characters and fascinating situations, Celestial Blue Skies, invites us to consider that at times the only type of love that can help us survive is an exacting, fierce one.

 --J.L. Torres, author of The Accidental Native and Boricua Passport Editor Saranac Review

Maggie Collins writes about real people who live on the page. Celeste Bastille is a young woman who will win the reader and stay in her memory. Most of the characters are as vivid as Celeste and they are a family. As much as you want Celeste to find happiness in her own life, the family needs her. Collins weaves a tale as intriguing as the folktale that is the basis for the book. Celeste earns her Celestial Blue Sky. ~ Lee Grue, Editor, The New Laurel Review


 It isn't often that I get to visit Creole homes in southwest Louisiana and just listen. I like to tell my friends here in Europe that New Orleans is a city of tribes who are more or less friendly to one another. Within the black community there are tribes with complex differences, within the white community there are tribes. But the tribe I love the most is the tribe of the heart. Ms. Collins is surely part of that. Celestial Blue Skies is a book of the heart. It describes a Creole family in southwest Louisiana some few years ago, with the authority of an insider. I found myself peering through watery eyes a number of times. Truthful books touch you that way.

 ~ Gordon Walmsley,  Editor, The Copenhagen Review

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Maggie Collins writes about real people who live on the page.Celeste Bastille is a young woman who will win the reader and stay in her memory. Most of the characters are as vivid as Celeste and they are a family. As much as you want Celeste to find happiness in her own life, the family needs her. Collins weaves a tale as intriguing as the folk tale which is the basis for the book. Celeste earns her Celestial Blue Sky.

Lee Grue New Orleans poet and author
Publisher of the New Laurel Review



Lee Meitzen Grue is a Louisiana poet and fiction writer, who often writes about New Orleans culture and music. Her published books are: Trains and Other Intrusions: Poems; French Quarter Poems; In The Sweet Balance of The Flesh; and Goodbye, Silver, Silver Cloud, a collection of New Orleans stories. A spoken word CD with jazz accompaniment "Live! On Frenchmen Street" was released in 2000. Performing with jazz or reading without accompaniment, Grue has appeared in night clubs: The Knitting Factory in New York, Snug Harbor, and True Brew in New Orleans. and at literary festivals: The Tennessee Williams and Faulkner Festivals, and Jazz Fest in New Orleans. As a Visiting Writer, she has conducted seminars and performed her work at La Universidad de Barcelona in Spain; at Librairie, an English language bookstore in Paris, Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri, and at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa at an international symposium on “The Literature of Place" She has translated the work of Mexican poet David Huerta as part of “Bridging The Gulf”an exchange of four Mexico City poets and four new Orleans poets. The recipient of an NEA Fellowship; prizes in poetry and fiction from Deep South Writers; The Associated Writing Programs; and A PEN Syndicated Fiction Prize, Grue has taught at Tulane University, Westminster College, and Xavier University. She is the former Director of The New Orleans Poetry Forum and The First Backyard Poetry Theater and long time editor of The New Laurel Review. Grue is a member of The Authors Guild and is listed in Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in American Women. 

www.leegrue.com









It isn't often that I get to visit Creole homes in southwest Louisiana and just listen. I like to tell my friends here in Europe, that New Orleans is a city of tribes who are more or less friendly to one another. Within the black community there are tribes with complex differences, within the white community there are tribes. But the tribe I love the most is the tribe of the heart. Ms. Collins is surely part of that.Celestial Blue Skies is a book of the heartIt describes a Creole family in  southwest Louisiana some few years ago, with the authority of an insider. I found myself peering through watery eyes a number of times. Truthful books touch you that way.


Gordon Walmsley
author of Daisy, The Alchemical Adventures of a New Orleans Hermaphrodite
editor of The Copenhagen Review (www.copenhagenreview.com)

Gordan Walmsley, an internationally acclaimed poet, is author the new poetically constructed novel, Daisy, The Alchemical Adventures of a New Orleans Hermaphrodite, published in October, 2013 in Denmark as a limited edition. The book, written partially in prose, partially in verse, has been described by Lee Froehlich, Managing Editor of Playboy, as the "undaisiest of daisys." Gordon grew up in New Orleans ane was graduated from Princeton University and Tulane Law School and has been writing poetry ever since. His latest book of poems Echoes of a River, Poems of New Orleans and Beyond, was published in Ireland by Salmon. The Irish Times wrote: “Walmsley’sspirit of compassion and empathy shines through the pages. The shorter echo poems that are placed like waves in the volume lend a visual interpretative layer that helps the collection in imparting more complex readings ("something can arise / from a wave that falls / among the sounding words". Gordan is married to a Dane and has been living in Denmark for many years. Apart from writing poetry, he edits www.copenhagenreview.com which features a span of excellent writers from relatively unknown aspirants to Nobel Prize winners. He has translated a number of poets from German, Swedish, Norwegian, and Danish, including Tomas Tranströmer, Inger Christiansen and Katarina Frostenson.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Moray Olivier and Mattie Auzenne won the $25 Amazon Gift Cards. CONGRATULATIONS.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Celestial Blue Skies Cover Reveal



Synopsis

            Celestial Blue Skies is a coming of age story about young Creole and biracial Celeste who lives in poverty with her mentally ill mother, her grandmother, Maymay, her Aunt Bumblebee, her Uncle T-Red, her three illegitimate sisters, and her cousins. Celeste learns how to fend for herself and her sisters at a young age while also fighting rumors about her mother, Tut, the whore of Belle Place, a sleepy one traffic- light Southwestern Louisiana town.  Her mother Tut wants to leave all of them and live with a man she finds working in the sugarcane fields. Maymay fears that Celeste will end up like her mother. Will Celeste end up like her mother, or will she redeem her family from hoodoo and the Curse of the Mulatto? Will she find love herself with someone with a culture just as exotic as hers?



Biography

          I was born and raised under the clear blue skies of Loreauville, Louisiana. I majored in English at the University of Louisiana and later earned a Master’s degree from the University of New Orleans where I earned the title Educational Diagnostician. I am married with two young boys.
An excerpt of my novel was published in Louisiana Cultural Vistas. Celestial Blue Skies which was once titled The Curse of the Mulatto was a 2009 finalist finalist for the worldwide William Faulkner William Wisdom writing contest. It also placed as a finalist in the same 2011 competition as Celestial Blue Skies. I am a Center for Black Literature fellow.
Contact
maggieperrodin@yahoo.com
http://celestialblueskies.blogspot.com
Maggie Whodat Collins on Facebook
@maggie28 on twitter
Celestial blue skies on facebook



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Friday, February 28, 2014

Cover Reveal on Facebook Contact me if You need an Invite

https://www.facebook.com/events/589437181150325/?notif_t=plan_user_joined




BLACK BOYS DON’T SHOOT is an intense, experimental theater production aiming to cease gun fire on black youth across the globe. BBDS tackles the history-long obstacles and violence-dense ideology faced by and taught to black boys (particularly in America) from the 1700’s until now. The objective of Black Boys Don’t Shoot is to help members of the community re-establish the village mentality. We aim, with this production, to bring responsibility back to self while bringing accountability back to the entire community (the village). The production follows ten scripted monologue passages that discuss the effects of abandonment during slavery, the judicial system, poverty and fatherhood. Black Boys Don’t Shoot discusses solutions for becoming better men by seeking the divine within ourselves and mentoring young men. Writer/Director Charles Foster Jolivette is a 31 year old entertainer and entrepreneur from San Francisco California now living in New Orleans Louisiana. Charles began his career in writing shortly after he learned to walk, penning letters to Maya Angelou at 8 and rubbing elbows as an adolescent his Bay Area hometown with 2Pac Shakur. As a recording artist and talent manager, he has had the honor of working with Dick Gregory, Michael Franti and Paul Mooney among a slew of creative talents. His books include Etouffee, Le Midnight Roux and Bayou Babies. Foster Jolivette's upcoming release is an intense, experimental theater production aiming to cease gun fire on black youth. He calls the production, Black Boys Don't Shoot, "God's work!" Born and raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Tony Wilson is a multi-talented stage performer and recording artist now residing in New Orleans, Louisiana. An electric performer, Tony Wilson presents captivating, uplifting entertainment and is often referred to as "the most sought after Spoken Word artist in the Gulf Coast Region." Born in Jackson, Tennessee and raised in Henderson SIMPLE CITY Tennessee, Robert Deon is a 39-year-old United States ARMY SENIOR LEADER currently serving in Gulfport, Mississippi. Robert is an Iraqi War Veteran, a film and television actor and business owner. Deon also boasts that, "I'm the proud son of a preacher dedicated to pushing the positive word to the world.''

 A Scribe Called Quess? (aka Michael Moore) is a poet, educator, and an actor. Quess has spent four years as an English teacher and is is a founding member of Team SNO (Slam New Orleans), New Orleans’ first slam poetry team since Hurricane Katrina, and the only national championship team the city has ever produced having won competitions in 2010, 2012 and 2013. His accomplishments with Team SNO have earned him honors from the Mayor of New Orleans as well as from City Council.

32 year old Larry D.E. McGhee II, originally of Atlanta Georgia is a graduate of Morris Brown College and the North Atlanta School for performing arts. As an active duty U.S. Coast Guard for 8 years Larry was worked in counter narcotics and search and rescue. His daughter is the center of his world and music and acting are his passion. Of Black Boys Don't Shoot, Larry says, " I  hope it will light a fire in the hearts and minds of MEN both young and old to take a stand against what's happening to our FUTURE."

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Celestial Blue Skies: Celestial’s Blue Skies –Maggie Collins This is...

Celestial Blue Skies: Celestial’s Blue Skies –
Maggie Collins


 This is...
: Celestial’s Blue Skies – Maggie Collins  This is a fictional story set in the Bayou of Louisiana in 1989. Picture, country gravel, un...
Celestial’s Blue Skies –
Maggie Collins


 This is a fictional story set in the Bayou of Louisiana in 1989. Picture, country gravel, unpaved roads. It’s a one traffic light town set in Bell Place, Louisiana by the Bayou. My sister-girls and I could have been bred and raised in Bell Place, USA. Belle Place can be any fictional city in the South. Some of the major players include Maymay, the Bastille matriarch, married to T-Man. T-Red, the only son of Maymay and T-Man. Tut (Theresa Bastille), the only daughter of the Bastilles. In the African American culture we come up with nicknames for ourselves and that of our children. Our grand-parents were quick to give a child a nickname that way when you entered the room you did not know who they were talking about on the telephone. The life of Celeste and her family was the message of this novel. Looking at life from your children’s viewpoint brings insights overlooked for a mother trying to grind life in 24 hours and trying to survive with shelter, safety and food on the table. Issues addressed include racism within classes of women, the bayou with sugar cane stalks and surrounding community. Working the stalks, living around the stalks and finding love within the stalks. This novel was a page turner and held my attention because I wanted to know what was going to happen in the storyline. It was a realistic storyline set in everyday African-American families trying to rise out of poverty. My favorite character was Celeste’s mother, Tut. Tut is called “simple” by family and town members. Tut is the mother of Celeste and three other children. Tut is twenty four. Her mother called her “nasty, sinful and disgusting because she was sleeping with any man. She was labeled as the town whore. With hair down her waste she said that “Diana Ross stole her lyrics to “Upside Down.” Everybody says “Tut is known for her cutting up and acting up” therefore her brother T-Red instills the fear of God in her. Maymay once said “Tut, came into the world like “the soft winds in the Belle Place.” Tut, could be anyone’s best friend with a childlike quality in a woman’s body. The moral of this story is that often time’s family is all we have. “We all we got.” How we loved on each other, speak to each other resonates when God calls us home. Although Celeste is raised by the village, she none the less pushes her pain deep down inside of herself in regards to her mother’s behavior or lack of time to spend with her daughter. Celeste once said of her mother, that “Mama can’t change who she is, and we are who we are.” Each character’s presentation could become the sequel novel. I was so riveted I wanted to know what happens in the end. This was quite the page turner. I gave this novel a 4.5 because it was an excellent read. It was a summer breeze on a cold winter’s night. I recommend this book to book clubs to read amongst sister-girls to dissect and come up with a viable series of questions. A young lady trying to find her way in life would love the beauty of growing up around a family that guards their own. After completing this book I would read other books by this author.




Marilyn G. Diamond, a Sankofa Literacy Society and Delphine Publications Reviewer began reading at an early age and continued through college reading Harlequin novels. Books became as an escape mechanism for her while growing up in Brooklyn, New York. While working full-time Ms. Diamond raised three boys and other neighborhood children with a strict demeanor insisting on finishing homework and visiting libraries as positive incentives. After finishing college in Central New York, weather and medical issues bore down on Ms. Diamond, causing her to relocate. She now resides in South Carolina, where she is not only a book reviewer, but also a Published Author. Ms. Diamond took part in the Motherhood Diaries Anthology published by Simon and Shuster under ReShonda Tate Billengsley in 2013. “Having always maintained a journal there was always a desire to write. “As a reviewer she takes her occupation to heart. You can find this grand-mother, reading and reviewing various literature alongside starting a book club and inspiring the upcoming generations.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

a Rafflecopter giveaway


 
The giveaway will be for a New Orleans-inspired necklace (now) and one signed copy of the book when it’s available (w/swag):
 
A gunmetal locket with silver Fleur de Lis charm and red Swarovski crystal
 
 
Feel free to use as little or much as you’d like of the following information. And if you need or want anything else from me, please let me know :O)
 
Bio:
Lisa Maxwell is the author of Sweet Unrest   (Flux, October 2014). When she's not writing books, she teaches English at a local college. She lives near DC with her very patient husband and two not-so patient boys.
 
Author Photo:
 
Book Blurb:
Lucy Aimes has always been practical. But try as she might, she can’t come up with a logical explanation for the recurring dreams that have always haunted her. Dark dreams. Dreams of a long-ago place filled with people she shouldn’t know…but does.
 
When her family moves to a New Orleans plantation, Lucy’s dreams become more intense, and her search for answers draws her reluctantly into the old city’s world of Voodoo and mysticism. There, Lucy finds Alex, a mysterious boy who behaves as if they’ve known each other forever. Lucy knows Alex is hiding something, and her rational side doesn’t want to be drawn to him. But she is.
 
As she tries to uncover Alex’s secrets, a killer strikes close to home, and Lucy finds herself ensnared in a century-old vendetta. With the lives of everyone she loves in danger, Lucy will have to unravel the mystery of her dreams before it all comes to a deadly finish.
 

Monday, January 20, 2014

Celestial Blue Skies: DARK PARADISEAngie SandroJuly 1, 2014Grand Centr...

Celestial Blue Skies:

DARK PARADISEAngie SandroJuly 1, 2014Grand Centr...
: DARK PARADISE Angie Sandro July 1, 2014 Grand Central Publishing/ Forever Yours BOOK BLURB: DARK LEGACY Mala LaCroix ...


DARK PARADISE
Angie Sandro
July 1, 2014
Grand Central Publishing/ Forever Yours


BOOK BLURB:


DARK LEGACY

Mala LaCroix has spent her whole life trying to escape her destiny. As the last in a long line of “witch women,” she rejects the notion of spirits and hoodoo and instead does her best to blend in. But when she finds a dead body floating in the bayou behind her house, Mala taps into powers she never knew she had. She’s haunted by visions of the dead girl, demanding justice and vengeance.

DEADLY SECRETS

Landry Prince has always had a crush on Mala, but when Mala discovers his sister, murdered and marked in some sort of Satanic ritual, he starts to wonder if all the rumors about the LaCroix family are true. Yet after Mala uses her connection to the spirit world to identify his sister’s killer, he starts to form his own bond to her . . . a very physical one. As they move closer to each other and closer to the truth, Mala and Landry must risk everything—their families, their love, and even their lives.


GIVEAWAY:

Angie is giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card.


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ANGIE SANDRO:

Bio:


Angie Sandro was born at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri. Within six weeks, she began the first of eleven relocations throughout the United States, Spain, and Guam before the age of eighteen.

Friends were left behind. The only constants in her life were her family and the books she shipped wherever she went. Traveling the world inspired her imagination and allowed her to create her own imaginary friends. Visits to her father's family in Louisiana inspired this story.

Angie now lives in Northern California with her husband, two children, and an overweight Labrador


Author Links: