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Works by
Terry McMillan
(Writer)

Fiction
  • Mama (1987)
    Focusing on the African-American woman's experience, Mama reflects on children, men, money, loneliness and alcoholism through Mildred Peacock's life and family. Hattie Winston's inflections, pace and clarity are excellent; her warm, expressive voice consistently portrays the characters. Winston's best characterizations are Mildred and her eldest daughter, Freda, who are the focus of the story. Slow, sexy blues music precedes and follows the narrative, adding flavor to the circular, repetitious pattern of life. Freda's pondering, "How can you save your family from itself?" gets at the essence of Mama.

  • Disappearing Acts (1989)
    Buy the movie, Disappearing Acts (2000), DVD  VHS
    Zora Banks (Sanaa Lathan) is a school teacher and aspiring singer hoping to become a successful star while taking a break from heartache. Franklin Swift (Wesley Snipes) is a down-on-his-luck construction worker and not-quite divorced father of two hoping to start his own business. The two meet and fall in love and during the course of the stormy relationship, they both come to some startling conclusions about love and each other.

  • Waiting to Exhale (1992)

    • ROBIN STOKES is a successful insurance professional recovering from a dead-end love affair. "They say love is a two-way street. But I don't believe it because the one I've been on for the last two years was a dirt road." After months of depression , shopping and dating all the wrong men, she's getting by with a little help from her friends -- and still determined to find the Real Thing...

    • BERNADINE HARRIS has the kids,the house, and the BMW, but a young white bookkeeper has her husband. Now, propped by her prescription for Xanax and her first pack of cigarettes in 106 days, she's entering a whole new world....

    • GLORIA MATTHEWS owns one of the few stylish beauty salons for black women in Phoenix, and finds solace in religion, her teenage son, other people's hair, and food. Her social and emotional bank accounts are low, but a sweet suprise is about to open up her life....

    • SAVANNAH JACKSON is a public relations executive -- educated, attractive, and unmarried. On the verge of moving to her fourth city in fifteen years, she's lobbying the Lord, "Could You send me a decent man? Could he be full of zest, and please, a slow, tender, passionate lover -- and could he already be what he aspired to?" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

    Buy the movie, Waiting to Exhale (1995)  DVD VHS
    This story based on the best selling novel by Terry McMillan follows the lives of four African-American women as they try to deal with their very lives. Friendship becomes the strongest bond between these women as men, careers, and families take them in different directions. Often light-hearted this movie speaks about some of the problems and struggles the modern women face in today's world.

  • How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1996)
    Stella Payne is forty-two, divorced, a high-powered investment analyst, mother of eleven-year-old Quincy- and she does it all. In fact, if she doesn't do it, it doesn't get done, from Little League carpool duty to analyzing portfolios to folding the laundry and bringing home the bacon. She does it all well, too, if her chic house, personal trainer, BMW, and her loving son are any indication. So what if there's been no one to share her bed with lately, let alone rock her world? Stella doesn't mind it too much; she probably wouldn't have the energy for love - and all of love's nasty fallout - anyway.

    But when Stella takes a spur-of-the-moment vacation to Jamaica, her world gets rocked to the core - not just by the relaxing effects of the sun and sea and an island full of attractive men, but by one man in particular. He's tall, lean, soft-spoken, Jamaican, smells of citrus and the ocean - and is half her age. The tropics have cast their spell and Stella soon realizes she has come to a cataclysmic juncture: not only must she confront her hopes and fears about love, she must question all of her expectations, passions, and ideas about life and the way she has lived it.

    Told in Stella's own exuberant, dead-on, dead honest voice, How Stella Got Her Groove Back is full of Terry McMillan's signature humor, heart, and insight. More than a love story, it is ultimately a novel about how a woman saves her own life - and what she must risk to do it.

    Buy the movie, How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1998)  DVD  VHS
    Stella (Angela Bassett) is a highly successful, forty-something San Francisco stock broker who is persuaded by her colorful New York girlfriend Delilah (Whoopi Goldberg) to take a well deserved, first-class vacation to Jamaica. As she soaks in the beauty of the island, she encounters a strapping, young islander, Winston Shakespeare (Taye Diggs). His pursuits for her turn into a hot and steamy romance that forces Stella to take personal inventory of her life and try to find a balance between her desire for love and companionship, and the responsibilities of mother and corporate executive. 

  • A Day Late and a Dollar Short (2001)
    Much-heralded and long awaited, Terry McMillan's tour-de-force novel introduces the Price family-matriarch Viola, her sometimes-husband Cecil, and their four adult kids, each of whom sees life-and one another-through thick and thin, and entirely on their own terms. With her hallmark exuberance and cast of characters so sassy, resilient, and full of life that they breathe, dream, and shout right off the page, the author of the phenomenal best-sellers Waiting to Exhale and How Stella Got Her Groove Back has given us a novel that takes us ever-further into the hearts, minds, and souls of America-and gives us six more friends we never want to leave.

  • The Interruption of Everything (2005)
    Marilyn Grimes, wife and mother of three, has made a career of deferring her dreams to build a suburban California home and lifestyle with her workaholic husband, Leon. She also troubleshoots for her grown kids, cares for her live-in mother-in-law (and elderly poodle, Snuffy), keeps tabs on her girlfriends Paulette and Bunny and her own aging mother and foster sister— and holds down a part- time job. But at forty-four, Marilyn’s got too much on her plate and nothing to feed her passion. She feels like she’s about ready to jump. She’s just not sure where.

  • It's OK if You're Clueless: and 23 More Tips for the College Bound (2006)
    When her son Solomon graduated from high school, Terry McMillan was asked to be the guest speaker at the commencement ceremony. Determined not to be dull or redundant, Terry thought back to when she was stepping out into the world for the first time and the things she wished people had told her. Printing up what she thought were the most important tips for these new graduates, Terry was surprised to find that not only were these homemade pamphlets a hit with the students, but their parents clamored for copies too.

    Now with It’s Ok If You’re Clueless, Terry McMillan brings her trademark wit and sass to every son and daughter about to take their first tentative steps into adulthood. Offering such nuggets as “Sit up straight,” “Don’t listen to your parents,” and “Bring your laundry home,” as well as “See the world” and “Read anything and everything,” It’s Ok If You’re Clueless is packed with the commonsense advice and conversational tone that have made her novels classic bestsellers. Equal parts witty and wise, It’s Ok If You’re Clueless is the perfect gift for the college bound this May.

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