REVIEWS

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Don’t take my word for it, here’s what readers have to say!

Book reviews

AUTHOR REVIEWS 

“Yecheilyah Ysrayl takes us on a colorful and thought provoking journey through the eyes of a mulatto slave woman Stella. Generations later, Stella’s descendant Cynthia May has no idea of Stella’s life as a slave, nor the true identity of their bloodline. Since Cynthia is a racist she is in for a rude awakening. Stella is reminiscent of a wonderfully written slave narrative, a story of history and pain, it is brilliant opener of the Stella series.“ 

- Kathryn Reed, on Stella Book One


“The book is of discovery, healing and a slight political stance. It covers issues from simple being to issues of current affairs. It's beautiful, soft and strong. From beginning to end the book is inspiring and reached into depths of my own inquisitive mind and soul. Not only does the cover capture me, but the words as well. I even found myself reading a few out loud.”

- Alyssa, on I am Soul


“I love the story line of this book.It was nice reading something fresh and new. I am from the South, so I was intrigued by the characters, the language used, and the setting. Wanda was my favorite character. I loved that she was strong willed, brave, resilient, and intelligent, in spite of her circumstances. It was great to see her stand up to a strong, intimidating woman like Ms. Cassandra.” - Shakeitha, on Even Salt Looks Like Sugar


“The first thing that drew me to this novel was its beautiful cover. A deep blue sky fading into a sunset which bakes an old country road golden brown. After reading the description and the first few pages, I was hooked by elegant prose and alliteration (e.g. “knew the mind of a mule”). I enjoyed the use of personification, when the author says that the sun was an overseer. What was it about Nora’s mother, Molly White? What family secret was always at the tip of the tongue? I enjoyed the way that mystery kept peeking out at you. To me, that tugs at the reader. Keeps him and her intrigued.”

James Fant, on Renaissance: The Nora White Story Book One


“I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Nora once again. One of the things that really got my interest is the time era of the story line. I am a fan of the Harlem Renaissance and history and with Nora I am able to feel like I am part of that time. Yecheilyah did a great job with incorporating history into a fictional list of characters that you could imagine that you were right there having enlightening conversations with. I had not really dug into Marcus Garvey and the UNIA but I will now since reading this portion of the story. I felt like I was at the rally and listening to the empowering speeches of one of greats. I was going through the motions with the family back in Mississippi and it really upset me how they were treated. Gideon was a true definition of a leader and even when he was down he was still strong.”

- Natashia Crawford, on Revolution: The Nora White Story Book 2


“Stella: Beyond the Colored Line is a fascinating walk through the ages–from slavery, to segregation, to the black power movement, to modern times. Through the eyes of one mixed race woman, the author touches on major events in African American history, allowing the reader to experience them in real time. The story deepens when Stella decides to live as a white woman and raise her children as whites. As her family grows and develops within a changing society, Stella and her children reveal complex perspectives and attitudes that make it clear that it doesn’t matter who your ancestors were. Nothing is just simply black or white.” - Christa Wojo., on Stella: Beyond the Colored Line


"Wow this was a Great Read!! The road to Freedom:Joseph's story, may be set In the time frame of the early 60's but its content is very relevant to today's current events. The writer takes you on a journey through the eyes of a young man named Joseph. He and his friends begin down a road with only the hope of wanting to somehow help the fight for equality of "African Americans" and to stop the mistreatment they suffered under segregation and Jim Crow laws. They realize that this task would be harder than they imagined. As they travel down the road of reality, they find that the segregated world they live in has been paved with cruelty, Injustice, and was blinded by hatred and strong resistance to even the notion of change. Joseph and his friends encountered first hand, the mistreatment and persecution of the "African American" people and those that helped them. " - SiYah, on The Road to Freedom: Joseph’s Story


“If something is wrong, you don’t sit back and let the wrong continue. You go out and you do your part to change it.” If the above quote speaks to you, you should read this book. The cast of characters are mostly young teenagers who want to change the world, but first need a plan. They all have different life experiences and bring their own perspectives to what they want to accomplish, which is really good for showing the reader other aspects (instead of just the narrator’s point of view). Right away on their journey, the group encounters racism that affects them all, yet some more than others. There are no exaggerations on the violence depicted, which can be a wake-up call for readers who don’t have as much knowledge of this part of history. The story itself leads to further research by grabbing the reader’s interest in gaining more knowledge about this period of time.”

- Swimming through Literature, on The Road to Freedom: Joseph’s Story


"The screenplay, Pearls Before Swine, reads like a movie script. I feel as though I'm acquainted with some of the characters. Yecheilyah Ysrayl's first screenplay is definitely an accomplishment. If you like drama, this is it. The suspense will keep you on the edge of your seat! The pearls are most intriguing! Discover what these pearls represent. Undoubtedly, you will gain insight from this powerful mystery." - Amazon Customer, on Pearls Before Swine


"This is an amazing book. You can find your self playing out each scene as if a movie is playing out in your mind. Each character has a story that you can somehow relate to yourself. Wonderfully written this page turner will have you asking for more and more. This is a book that was truly hard to put down.” - Constance Humphrey, on Pearls Before Swine

 

"Yecheilyah Ysrayl has crafted an outstanding novel that takes the reader on the migration that black elders have described all our lives. Ms. Ysrayl handles this large cast of characters exceptionally well and adds depth to many of the minor characters making us curious to know who they are and what they know."

- Linda Mimms, on Renaissance: The Nora White Story Book 1


"Stella is a story that resonates with me and challenged the sensibilities of people who judge others based on the color of their skin. Cynthia's world is turned upside down with the knowledge that she is black and Alex abandons her as a result. The lesson in this is we are all tied together in some way and God did not intend for humans to be separated simply based on skin tone. After the story is over, the author provides a history lesson for us about the existence of slavery in the North and the misinformation we are prone to believe. She also explains how slaves chose to change their names after being set free with some great examples to back it up. " - Lisa W. Tetting on Stella: Between Slavery and Freedom


"Excellent read, My husband bought them as a present for me, and thou English is not my first language I found it really easy to read, very educational, and i must say i enjoy the fact that I needed to do some research and learnt new things, I certainly recommend it and also encourage you to give it as a present to a friend, family or even a work college, you will certainly leave a print in their hearts. Kind regards." -  Estefania Lugo, on The Stella Trilogy


"This trilogy hit the nail on the head and painted vivid pictures of what it meant to be black during the time of slavery. It also introduces an aspect many of us are not exposed to especially when one is mixed and is faced with the hard choice of choosing which “side” you will let the world see and how this benefits you and in the long run how it affects you as a person and your family. The character Stella is a strong woman faced with hard choices and carries burdens that we cannot fathom. It is eye opening of the racial diversities that we still encounter today, making it a bitter pill to swallow no matter which side of the spectrum you’re looking at it. These stories all tell a tale of their own, each taking you down a path you did not see coming. They are all unique in their own way and are quite interesting considering there are three generations represented. Great read for everyone and interesting to discuss in a book club. There is enough material to dive through for days! Go get your copies now and learn more about our history." - Kasapo Chibwe, on The Stella Trilogy


"This story retells the history of many African-American families alive today. It is a heritage rich with strife and suffering but also filled with a hope and a desire to finally grasp the freedom that has been so elusive and out of reach for so many. At times, I was forced to accept some uncomfortable truths about our American past. There is nothing wrong with that. This story makes you think about freedom and what it really means to you as a person, and as an American. I loved this story because it is through the learning of other’s journeys that we begin to learn much about ourselves. Their pain becomes our pain and we begin to see through their eyes. Stella Mae will touch your soul with such a sweet simplicity you won’t even know it." - Colleen Chesebro, on Stella: Beyond the Colored Line


“Yecheilyah Ysrayl expertly writes the vibrant 1920’s of the Harlem Renaissance into life. Nora White, a young, naïve, high-spirited, aspiring writer from Mississippi finds herself in over her head when she befriends the rising stars of the Harlem literary elite – Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston. Beautifully written and well researched, the author did a terrific job transporting her readers, and her fictional character Nora White, to a magical period in New York City, enriched with jazz and poetry, contrasted against Nora’s family home in rural Mississippi where the segregation law of Jim Crow was still in effect. Ms. Ysrayl wrote regional/period dialect as effortlessly and expertly as William Faulkner and Tennessee Williams painting her scenes descriptively and characters deftly.” - Luna Saint Claire, on Renaissance: The Nora White Story Book 1

Read more reviews by visiting Yecheilyah's Amazon Author Page here.