Big Girls Don't Cry (2 Cassettes)by Connie Briscoe, Marilyn McCoo (Read by)
In her eagerly-awaited second novelBig Girls Don't Cry, bestselling author Connie Briscoe (Sisters and Lovers) examines the issues faced by a young black woman determined to be successful both professionally and romantically. Growing up in a loving and supportive middle-class family in Washington, DC, in the '60s, Naomi Jefferson worries about what to wear, her bra size and meeting boys, and she has dreams of one day opening her own clothing store. While she knows racism is a problem (occasional brushes with the uglier side of people don't let her forget it), Naomi is, at heart, just like any other teenage girl.
All of that changes when Joshua, Naomi's older brother, is killed in an accident on his way to a civil rights demonstration in Chicago. Racism becomes a personal issue, and Naomi decides that she needs to help bring about changes in the system. At college in Atlanta, she becomes immersed in politics, organizing protests and butting heads with school administrations as well as with her boyfriend, who isn't too friendly to the cause. Disillusioned by authority figures and betrayed by the man she loves, Naomi returns home, confused about the world and her place in it.
Witty, sensitive, bittersweet and triumphant, Big Girls Don't Cry is a compelling portrait of a woman who refuses to compromise her standards -- cloudy as they may be at times -- in her quest for satisfaction. In Big Girls Don't Cry, Briscoe has created a heroine and a story to which any woman who has faced the frustrations of glass ceilings, the pain of loss and sacrifice and the perils and pleasures of love will immediately relate.
In early 1960s Washington, D.C., Naomi Jefferson's most pressing issues are extracurricular activities (piano or ballet?), her older brother Joshua's superiority complex, and romance (will she ever be kissed?). Her family, meantime, is being affected by the Civil Rights movement: Joshua's becoming a radical while her parentsmiddle-class African-Americans who've become resigned to the racism they've been struggling against all their livesprefer to fight within the system. By contrast, Naomi's new friend Jennifer (who's rich, spoiled, and won't associate with Naomi's best friend Debbie because she's "too dark") accepts the status quo. As children, Naomi and Debbie had always planned to open their own business someday, but they hadn't counted on the (stereotypical) pitfalls of growing up black in America: Debbie gets pregnant and Naomi meets all the wrong men, dabbles with drugs, drops out of college, then loses Joshua to the cause she's only just begun to understand. Thanks to her iron-willed parents and Joshua's best friend Dean, however, she does get back on track, earning an MBA degree and a highly prized position as a unit manager at Systems Solutions, Inc., a major D.C. consulting firm. But when she's passed up for a promotion she's more than earned, she decides to go one step further and fulfill her childhood dreams, professional and personal. Only the appearance of Joseph, the adolescent son no one knew Joshua had, threatens to throw a wrench into the works.
Briscoe's been touted as another McMillan or even a peer of Morrison's, but the stilted dialogue, heavy-handed moralizing, and plodding plot here keep her in a lesser league entirely.
- HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- 2 Cassettes
- Product dimensions:
- 4.57(w) x 7.11(h) x 0.82(d)
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