2nd Time Around

( 11 )

Overview

Yes, Raheim "Pooquie" Rivers and Mitchell "Little Bit" Crawford are back - they've got a serious love thang goin' on, and IT'S ALL JOOD. But for Raheim, it's a trip that promises to be both phat and frightening. As he struggles with being in love with another man for the first time, he must also come to terms with the murder of his homeboy, Derrick "D.C." Carter, and confront his father, who returns after abandoning him and his mother over sixteen years ago. Add his ever-curious five-year-old son, Junior, to the ...
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Overview

Yes, Raheim "Pooquie" Rivers and Mitchell "Little Bit" Crawford are back - they've got a serious love thang goin' on, and IT'S ALL JOOD. But for Raheim, it's a trip that promises to be both phat and frightening. As he struggles with being in love with another man for the first time, he must also come to terms with the murder of his homeboy, Derrick "D.C." Carter, and confront his father, who returns after abandoning him and his mother over sixteen years ago. Add his ever-curious five-year-old son, Junior, to the mix, and it's no wonder Raheim doesn't go mad crazy. Rut he manages to survive it all - thanks to the passion and patience of the man he loves.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The Second Time Around is the sequel to B-Boy Blues, Hardy's hugely successful first "Africentric" gay hip-hop novel. Raheim Rivers is back, and he's trying to pick up the pieces and carry on with his life. The narrative is mostly dialogueeither Raheim's conversations with himself or with the people in his lifeand it provides an engaging, immediate window to Raheim's character and his dawning maturity. The novel begins with and is centered around Raheim's reconciliation with his lover, Little Bit, who left him after Raheim hit him in a fit of jealousy. Through a series of flashbacks to his youth, readers learn what made Raheim the man he is nowa black man in love with another black man, not entirely out of the closet, prone to bursts of verbal violence and, most importantly, a man with an enormous capacity for love and for learning from his mistakes. Added to Raheim's struggle to win back Little Bit's trust are the complexities of co-raising his son, L'il Brotha Man. Raheim is determined to be a better father to his son than the one who left him and his mother behind. Things move in cycles of beginnings and endings, from Raheim's burgeoning modeling career to L'il Brotha Man's graduation from kindergarten. The result is an upbeat tale which, while confronting issues of violence, racism and homophobia, is romantic, absolutely sensual and downright funny. (Nov.)
Kirkus Reviews
Hardy's follow-up to 1994's B-Boy Blues preserves the author's rep as a dazzling chronicler of "street," gay, African-American culture.

Sheer reporterly skill, however, sometimes gets in the way of structure and plot. A barrage of authentic dialogue casts the lives of Raheim "Pooquie" Rivers, a bicycle messenger, and Mitchell "Little Bit" Crawford, a journalist, in high relief: The men are still in love and still contending with the significant differences both between their individual cultures and more particularly between the gay black and white worlds. Raheim is raising his young son, "L'il Brotha Man," while remaining conflicted about his sexuality. He hasn't been able to shake his hand-grenade temper and appetite for lapsing into African-American hypermasculine poses, despite the fact that his homosexuality is becoming more visible. Interspersed throughout are chapters labeled "Rewind," which offer glimpses of Raheim's former life—the birth of his son, for instance, plus a few saucy meditations, delivered in serious slang, on the pleasures of the flesh. In quick succession, Raheim becomes a male model and learns that his father is not, as he was led to believe, dead. A poignant moment follows in which Raheim has to explain this fact to L'il Brotha Man; Raheim's courage, both at rebelling against his father's example and sticking by L'il Brotha Man, and at working on his relationship with Mitchell, emphasize Hardy's upbeat attitude toward black-family alternatives. The story's tied up rather too tidily at the end, and Hardy doesn't always succeed in masking a thin plot with electrifying dialogue, but the characters—and their language—virtually jump off the page.

Hardy manages to combine unself-conscious sentiment and blistering emotion in voices that refocus gay and African-American storytelling. A thoroughly fresh presence in an increasingly crowded field.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781555833725
  • Publisher: Alyson Publications
  • Publication date: 10/1/1996
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 229
  • Product dimensions: 5.44 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Read an Excerpt

Excerpt


STICKS AND STONES

I was takin Li'l Brotha Man ta Little Bit's place ta spend tha weekend wit' us when...

"Daddy?"

"Yeah, my man?"

"What's a faggot?"

Day-am, where the fuck that come from?

Li'l Brotha Man is just too fuckin much. He smarter than I was when I was his age. But since he started school, he be askin even mo' questions. He say his teacher tells him not ta be afraid of askin, and I don't think he should be. But sometimes, them questions just be wild....

"Daddy, what are the clouds made of?"

"Daddy, how does the sun know when to come out?"

"Daddy, how does the moon know when to come out?"

"Daddy, if the world is round, how come when it turn we don't fall off?"

"Daddy, if there is a God, how come we can't see him?"

"Daddy, how do we know God is a him?"

"Daddy, how do they get the Rice Krispies to talk to me?"

But this question was straight-up wack.

Well, I guess it ain't that tha question was wack but that he was askin it. I mean, he was only five. So, I just had ta know...

"Where you hear that word?" I asked, tryin ta look at him and drive at tha same time.

"Terrence."

"Terrence? Who he?"

"Remember, Daddy, he's my friend from school."

"Oh, yeah."

"He has a twin sister. Her name is Theresa."

"Uh-huh...did he call you that word?"

"No. He said that's what his daddy called Michael Jackson."

"Michael Jackson?"Yes. I asked him what it mean, but he didn't know. He said that his daddy said it because he didn't want him to watch Michael on TV because of what he did to those boys."

"Did his daddy say what Michael did?"

"That Michael touched them, and that he slept in the same bed with them."

Me 'n' Sunshine had already talked ta him about lettin people "touch" him, so I know I ain't had ta go over that again. Li'l Brotha Man, he real sharp. But this? I had ta take a real deep breath.

"Li'l Brotha Man, listen ta me real close, a'ight?"

He folded his hands in his lap, his eyes wide, and looked at me. "Yes."

"We don't know if Michael did anything ta them boys...they just allegations. Can you say that word? A-lee-gay-shuns."

"A-lee-gay-shuns." He just loved soundin words out.

"Right."

"What does that word mean, Daddy?"

"A allegation is somethin that ain't been proved yet. You know, it's just one person's word against another. So we don't know if what them boys say is true or not."

"You mean...they could be tellin a fib?"

"Yeah, they could be tellin a fib."

"Why would they do that?"

"I don't know...maybe cuz they parents know they can get some money from Michael.... Anyway, we don't know if anything happened, so it ain't right ta prejudge somebody. You know what that word mean, prejudge?"

"Pre-judge? I think so. Is that when you think something about someone without knowing anything about them?"

"Yeah. How you know that?"

"We talked about that in class. Misses Scott says it's not nice to prejudge."

"That's right. And you wouldn't want nobody saying things about you that ain't true, or prejudgin you by what somebody else say, right?"

He shook his head. "No."

"So, I don't want you going 'round sayin things you don't know ain't true or not."

"OK, Daddy."

He smiled. He seemed a'ight wit' what I said. I was glad, cuz explainin shit ta him is hard. But then...

"Daddy?"

"Yeah?"

"You didn't answer my question."

Day-am...I almost got away.

I tried playin it off. "What question?"

But he wasn't havin it. "What is a faggot?"

Shit. What tha fuck do I say? This is one of them times when bein a parent ain't tha least bit cute. You gotta explain things that are hard ta explain, 'specially when they so young.

I took another deep breath. "Li'l Brotha Man, it's a bad word...some people use it when...well, they say it ta boys who...boys who don't act like boys."

"Boys who don't act like boys...? What do you mean, Daddy?"

"Uh..." Day-am, where's Little Bit when I need him? This is somethin he be good at. "Some boys don't wanna be boys...they wanna be girls...see, there are boy things and girl things...like, jumpin rope is a girl thing, and if you see a boy doin that, jumpin rope wit' girls, people will say that he trying ta be a girl, that he is...that word."

Tha tip of his left thumb went inta his mouth. He was thinkin. It reminded me of...me. "So Terrence's daddy said that because Michael jumps rope with girls?"

I chuckled. "No, Li'l Brotha Man. I guess Terrence's daddy called Michael that cuz...some people think that Michael don't act like a man...cuz he wear makeup, and he got a high-pitch voice...but you callin somebody outa they name when you do that, and it ain't right."

"So it's not a nice word?"

"No, it ain't, and I don't want ya usin it or callin somebody it. You don't like it when somebody calls you a bad word, right?"

He nodded. "No, I don't."

"So, don't do it ta nobody. It's like you prejudgin somebody cuz of the way they look, or act or talk, or sound."

He understood; I could tell by tha look on his face. We was quiet fuh a bit, and I was able ta breathe a big mutha-fuckin sigh of relief.

I smiled. "You like Michael?"

"Yes, I do. But Terrence says I shouldn't."

"Well, if you like him, you like him. Don't be listenin ta what Terrence say. People always comin down on Michael. I mean, I don't really like him, but it prob'ly aint' easy fuh him, bein tha richest Black man in tha world."

He looked at me like I was buggin. "Michael Jackson is Black, Daddy?"

"Yeah, he Black. Whatcha think he is?"

"He looks white!"

"I know he do, Li'l Brotha Man, but he Black."

I laughed.


Excerpted from 2nd Time Around by James Earl Hardy. Copyright © 1996 by James Earl Hardy. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.


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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 11 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2005

    DEEP TO THE CORE

    This book is so Deep...I love everything about this book. The love Rahiem and his Lil,Bit has is so passionate and not false love that we find so much in house holds these days. I love it and let me tell you if you looking for a good read check this out.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2005

    Not as good as B-Boys Blues

    B-Boy Blues had me staying up until 3am just to find out about 'Pooquie' and 'Little Bit'. I had a hard time getting through 2nd time around. I have all the books to B-Boy Blues I hope they get better.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2003

    kool book

    the book is kool i hope hes comeing out wiht more soon. iwonder dose he plain on making a moive out of th book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2003

    Understanding our brothas

    After reading this novel I was able to realize just how blind I have been to the gay/bisexual lifestyle. I now realize why men do some of the things they do while trying to maintain a relationship with a man and a woman the choices they must make the pain and mis-understanding, the concept of: Keeping it on the DL (Down Low). Mitchell and Raheim have a good relationship, but there is something missing as it is in most relationships: commitment and loyalty. Hardy gives us a damn good idea of the Baby Mama drama meets: Is that your Boyfriend? (Asked by the obvious onlookers). It is a compelling story with all the things we ever wanted to know about: B Boys, Brothas on tha Down Low and men who love men. I enjoyed the book and it will stand paramount in my mind I am certain of that. Good book for a summer read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2002

    OFF THE HOOK

    AM ABOUT 2-3PAGES FINISH, THIS OFF IS OFF THE HOOK AM HOPING THAT RAMIEAM WILL EVER TELL HIS MOTHER, SUNSHINE AND YES THAT NO GOOD FATHER OF HIS. WHEN I READ THE PART ABOUT HIS FATHER AND WHAT HE DID TO THE MOTHER AND SON AND EVEN LIL BROTH MAN IT BROKE MY HEART, CAUSE I TOO WENT THROW THE SAME THING THEY WENT THROW. WHEN I SAW THE BACK OF THE BOOK TO LET ME KNOW MORE ABOUT THE BOOK IT REALLY GOT TO ME ABOUT THE FATHER PART AND THE RAHIEM WAS GAY. BEING A GAY MAN MYSELF I COULD FEEL WHAT HE WAS GOING THROW.... TO SOME IT ALL UP ONCE AGAIN THIS BOOK WAS OFF THE HOOK.....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2002

    IT'S GREAT

    THIS BOOK KEEPS YOUR ATTENTION WITH THE FAMILY AND RELATIONSHIP ISSUES . ALSO THE EBONICS, THE WAY HARDY PUT THE HIP-HOP SLANG IN THE BOOK MADE ME WANT TO READ IT BECAUSE HE USES WORDS LIKE I USE WORDS. HARDY IS A BRILLIANT WRITER.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 12, 2001

    better than b boy blues

    ok, i read this book before i read b boy blues and i have to say that this was better. great and really believable storylines. you hate Pookie you love pookie, either way it's all good. in the end everything manages to work themself out. i really recommend though that you read the first book first as to not be lost in the gist of things. anyway... read and find out what the hype is about.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2000

    A Love Letter

    Versatile- That's the word that best describes Hardy's talent. I never read a trilogy with three such distinctive writing styles, all aptly suited to the subject. I read this novel three years ago. I recently reread it. I have to say, I loved it even more the 'Second Time Around.' It is so eloquent, so expressive, so beautiful; it is like a love letter to Little Bit from Pooquie. The black gay community is lucky to have an uncompromising voice such as Hardy. Thanks once again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2000

    James did it again!!!

    I feel like this is the best out of the three. It was interestingly written, and unbelievably heart taking, I have cried a few times through out the story, It's amazing, he did it again!! I will cherish and base my life on the love Rahiem (pookie) and Mitchell (lit'le bit) share.Keep up the good work J.E.H.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2000

    SECOND TIME AROUND NOT AS GOOD

    Maybe I wasn't as gripped as I was with B-BOY BLUES, but THE SECOND TIME AROUND did have it's good points. Rahiem's love for his son and his devotion to his true love kept the story in place. I was glad to be on the inside track as Rahiem began to go upscale with his modeling career, but to tell the truth, even with all the juicy secrets and backstory, his character didn't have the same appeal without his other half. Still, one truly enjoyable ride.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2000

    Anyone can relate....

    I just finished part two of Mr. Hardy's books ('B-Boy Blues' being the first part) and I loved it! First of all 'B-Boy Blues' was in the words of Little Bit's and now it is Pooquie's turn in '2nd Time Around'. With this book, anyone can read it: Straight or Gay. It is a book about two people in a relationship, two people in love; the ups and downs. Some people turn their nose up to the fact that it happens to be two men. If they can get over that (which is very small), they will see that this is a great book! Well done Mr. Hardy! I only hope that there are more books to come! Let me stop here so I can get buy his next book! :-)

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