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Posted October 25, 2010
Sellout tells the story of three seemingly very different people and their romantic entanglements in and out of their own race. Tammy is an educated and beautiful black woman, unerringly loyal to her man, only to discover that once again, she has been betrayed by his cheating. Furious, she kicks him out of both her apartment and her life, only later realizing just how much he had used her and how much worse it could have been. Having decided that she is done with men for awhile, especially black men, she picks up and moves from her hometown of Dallas, Texas to San Diego, California. Tammy's best friend Sheryl has strong feelings on the subject of interracial dating, hating to see a black man with a white woman. Her own brother Dedrick dates only white women, much to the dismay of his sister. His girlfriend is Penelope, the daughter of an extremely racist father who has passed his feelings on to her older brother. She knew that the men in her family would hate the idea of her romance with a black man, she never dreamed that it would go to the extent that it did. Terrill, Dedrick's best friend, has also sworn off black women, convinced that the drama just isn't worth it anymore. He bounces from one white woman to another, never settling, never finding what he is looking for with any of the women.
Being a 40 year old white woman, I am probably not the demographic for which this book was intended. But I literally could not put this book down. Yes, race and interracial dating were the main themes of this novel, but the themes of love, dissatisfaction, and self-discovery were completely universal. The opening scene in which Tammy discovers that her boyfriend is cheating is a perfect example of this. Black or white, a woman feels the same kind of pain when she discovers that she has been betrayed by the man she thought she loved.
The varying viewpoints of the different characters really made you think outside your own experiences and gave a level of understanding that you might not have had otherwise. At first, being a white woman, the attitudes of Sheryl really bothered me, but as I learned more about her, I began to understand the reasons behind her feelings. And while I may see the race issue differently, I could understand why she felt the way that she did. Tammy's struggles with men, reminded me of my own, even if the circumstances were different. I appreciated the honesty in the telling of her story, of her "relationship" with a white man. Terrill's own journey of self-discovery of his own issues with dating women of his own race was eye-opening as well. It really showed how someone else's viewpoint on your choices can make you think, and make you realize that you could be totally wrong. Penelope's struggle between her love for a black man and her racist upbringing was heartwrenching for me. The narrow-mindedness of her father and brother goes against everything I, as a reader, stand for and that made that part of the story emotional for me.
As I said, I could not put this book down, reading it in less than a day. I loved every part of it and the fact that it really made me think. The characters were real and well-developed, from main characters to the minor. The writing quality was excellent, but entirely real, even raw in places. I would highly recommend this book!
4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 18, 2012
Wow what can I say. I thought that this was a really good book. This book addressed a lot of things im sure many people are not willing to admit unless they are with a friend they can trust.
SellOut was a book about interacial dating and how people view it. The book follows three people (a white woman, a black woman, and a black male). These people go through personal journey's in dealing with realtionships within different races.
The book also opened up the minds of those, because i will admit ive said the same things the book has said being a black female .. like omg why do black men get rich and famous and get with a white woman.
This book was really good though it has a lot of drama and action and a lot of things people may deal with when it comes to interacial dating and dealing with family and coworkers and friends. I dont want to say too much because I dont want to ruin the book. It was a really good read with lots of pages for only .99.
So do you Sellout or Stayin.
Posted April 20, 2012
I am a firm believer that the experiences each of us have as children
help to shape the people that we become as adults. Some of us bear
witness to incidents that cause us to vow to live a completely
different life when we grow up while others may be unaware of how
those incidents affected them and find themselves reliving their
childhood as adults. Many more recognize the patterns yet feel
powerless to do anything about it.
In his debut novel “Sellout” James W. Lewis provides a captivating
exploration of how a group of professional young adults deal with race
and relationships. Each character, like many of us, want to find that
true love that we grew up believing in yet circumstances from their
past and situations in their present seem to be navigating their
Lewis masterfully creates dialogue among the characters that make you
feel as though you are listening in on a group of your friends and
riding the emotional relationship waves with them. Without boring the
reader, Lewis develops the characters with enough background
information to have an understanding of their current attitudes toward
My favorite character in “Sellout” is Tammy. After being in an
interracial relationship for more than three years, I could relate to
her mixed emotions about dating a white guy. In the beginning of the
relationship, you wonder if you gave up on black men too soon, you
feel a sense of insecurity when you are around other black people
wondering what they think of you but most of all, you wonder if there
is still hope for finding an African-American prince despite all of
the toads that have been thrown in your direction. Tammy wasn’t able to move
past those emotions but she was lucky enough to find a tall, dark and
handsome prince to pursue. In my opinion, she represents a woman who
may be wondering right now – why not date outside of my race?
I recommend this book to anyone who wants to spend a day or two with
some new friends getting the low down on what it’s really like to date
outside of their race.
Posted February 25, 2012
Posted February 11, 2012
Tammy is an African American Loan Officer who realizes that a successful black man is hard to find because of the growing number of black men dating white women. She’s contemplating dating white men, but is afraid of being called a sellout. Terrell an African American Optometrist has always been faithful to his girlfriend, but he finally becomes tired of her nasty attitude and lack of appreciation for him, so he finds himself dating white women. Penelope a Caucasian Analyst for the Navy secretly lusted after black men but knew she could never be with one because of her racist family. A one night stand with a black man made her decide to finally act on her interest.
I enjoyed the book as it was an easy read. The characters were well developed, however, I found myself more interested in Penelope’s character than the other two. I would have liked to read more on the other characters. More of Penelope’s background was revealed and her story was more action filled and interesting. I love the way the author was able to write so well from the eyes of Penelope whose character is so far from him. I would recommend this book to readers because it is entertaining and at time I found myself laughing out loud.
Posted January 18, 2012
The story line is a great concept but once you know what the book is about it kinda just drags on reiterating the same statements over and over. I found myself skipping over background information and only paying attention to what was in quatation marks. 3 stars cause it actually made it to publishing and the story line. I feel like there could have been a scenario of a wedding at the end in liue of all the beating the bush just to stress the subject line.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 11, 2011
This book deals with three different people trying to figure out dating. Add the interracial part and it gets a bit more complicated. They all intersect a bit with mutual friends, but their stories are told in separate chapters.
The story was a very fast read. I read it in one evening. It certainly isn't a book that I would have chosen to read, but I didn't hate it. I'm still not sure how I feel about it. It didn't really answer any questions or seem to solve anything. It just told the story of interracial dating from each perspective. The writing style was a bit cheesy or overdone in places, but since it was a "fluffy" style it wasn't too hard to read. In all honesty, I'm not sure if this will appeal to a broad audience. But for a few, this book will be a really great read that they can relate to.
I received this book free of charge in exchange for my honest review.
Posted November 3, 2011
The book allows the characters to work through a number of the stereotypes that are involved in interracial dating as well as race relations in general. We have black and white characters showing that they believe the stereotypes in their words, but we also have characters acting against what one might expect if one believed the stereotypes.
It is a thought provoking book, I enjoyed it, and it was well worth my time...check it out...
Posted June 14, 2011
I Also Recommend:
I MUST SAY THIS BOOK WAS A REALLY NICE READ. FOR SOMEONE WHO HAS NEVER DATED OUTSIDE OF THEIR RACE, THIS BOOK IS AN EYE OPENER. I CAN ONLY IMAGINE THE STARES AND THE NOT SO NICE THINGS THAT CAN BE SAID TO AN INTERRACIAL COUPLE. NEEDLESS TO SAY YOU MUST HAVE REALLY THICK SKIN FOR THIS LOVE TO SURVIVE. WELL JAMES M LEWIS DOES AND EXCELLENT JOB AT WEAVING THIS STORY OF THREE CHARACTERS DEALING WITH SOME ISSUES STEMMING FROM DATING SOMEONE OF THE OPPOSITE RACE. AND THE END IS QUITE SHOCKING, I NEVER EXPECTED IT TO GO THE WAY THAT IT DID. I ENJOYED READING THIS BOOK, AND I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT. ENJOY.......Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 26, 2010
James W. Lewis uses alternating first-person narrative to tell the stories of three very different people struggling with interracial dating and all that comes with it.
Tammy McDonald is fed up with men - black men. On a relationship losing streak she wonders if maybe it's time to switch things up. After all, black men, in droves, have been jumping ship by dating women other than black women. Well, two can play that game, and Tammy decides it's time to see if the grass is really greener on the other side.
Once you go black, you never go back, a statement Penelope Miller has found to be true. Despite her racist upbringing, she feels differently and is secretly involved with a black coworker. But what's done in the dark always comes to light, and not everyone is as willing to accept Penelope's choice of boyfriend.
Terrell Jackson has been there and done that with black women and has the t-shirt to show for it. Tired of the attitude that comes with dating a black woman, he is looking for an easier road to travel. Seeing the success his best friend Dedrick has been having with white women, Terrell decides to turn his back on black women.
Lewis speaks to the obvious but too often unaddressed. He cuts straight to the truth, hitting on all cylinders. I appreciate the fact that the author did not stay surface but went deeper to expose and establish the ultimate reasons each character chose to make the decisions made, something many in these real life situations don't know, don't recognize or won't acknowledge. Imbued with emotion and reality, "Sellout" is a novel well worth reading. I've said it before and I'll say it again, it's been difficult as of late to come up with an answer when asked what good books are out. "Sellout" definitely qualifies as a good book and I easily recommend it.
James W. Lewis has caught my attention and I look forward to his next endeavor.
Reviewed by: Toni
Posted November 21, 2010
SELLOUT by James W. Lewis....WOW..what can I say. Once I started this book I did not
want to put it down. The characters in Sellout are discovering the issues that come along with dating
outside of their race. Tammy, Terrell, Penelope and Dedrick each learn the issues that can
come with dating outside of your race.
Some call others sellout, but are you really ? Can one not love another of a different race?
Can one love and deal with the issues that comes with it ? Love has no color, Love don't
come easily. When Love comes I say go for it. Happiness matters more than what others
think of you. This book will really make you think about prejudice. Prejudice comes in all
colors, shapes and sizes.
Sellout takes interracial dating to another level. Readers will not see the twists coming,
the suspense....I was like no..that did not happen. This book had me doing some thinking and
laughing at times.
Sellout is a very entertaining novel and will keep you interested until the end.
The characters were well developed. The writing was excellent
I highly recommend this book to all women and men. Book clubs this will make a great
Posted September 8, 2010
Sellout by James Lewis brings up close the topic of interracial dating. As we follow Tammy, Penelope, and Terrell stories, we get the male-female-black-white story. As a black female, Tammy is fed up and attempts to date outside of her race. As much as she enjoys Dale, Tammy feels that she is missing something and turns to Terrell. Terrell's experience with dating black women made him decide to date other races, but he decided to give Tammy a chance. Tammy and Terrell's relationship takes off on a good note and they realize that they had not given up on dating their own race. Penelope's story is a little more complex. As a white female, she has always been attracted to black men despite her upbringing. Her father and brother have warned her against dating outside of her race and the consequences if they found out. So when she meets Dedrick, she is attracted to him. The relationship flourishes until they take a business trip to Penelope's home state. Penelope does not want to introduce Dedrick to her family, but her brother finds out and takes the law into his own hands. The consequences were almost deadly for Dedrick, but the love he felt for Penelope overshadowed them. Race is always a touchy subject. When a person truly falls in love, race is not important. The author did a great job with his first book and I look forward to reading others. --EbonyReader4Life (Circle of Color Book Club)Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 20, 2010
I picked this up as part of a book club. I could not make the meeting after purchasing it but read the book anyway. I could not put the book done. I loved the entire interracial aspect to it and the "realness" to it as well. Whether you are for or against interracial relationships this book is a great read!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 10, 2010
I really enjoyed this novel by James W. Lewsis. He took all of the known stereotypes about interacial dating and relationships and put it all out on the table. It shows perspectives from different cultures and how relationships within their own race or another effects their lives and the responses from their own culture. As someone that feels deeply that love has no boundaries whether it be race, age or social status I definately found it very interesting and relevent. In this book he portrays different characters viewpoints and how they were are all connected. I read it from front to back in two days. I can't wait to see what is in store next!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 24, 2010
Being a woman who is not black that has dated black men all of her life, I was very curious to read this novel. There have been a lot of books that I have read that bash interracial dating, always making fun of the white girl, sterotyping them to be blonde, airhead-ish, with no shape. That type of thing makes me shake my head. I look at it like the black women that are written about don't like to be sterotyped as having constant attitudes, so why do they make the white girls all seem like beach bunny air heads? Anyway, back to the book at hand. Sellout gave us a broad spectrum of character points of view, thrills, love and everything in between. James Lewis' characters are complex, endearing and well rounded. I went from loving some characters, to hating some, to being on the edge of my seat at the end. His writing flows smoothly, with no lulls in the story. It made me want to keep reading continuously until I finished, which I did. I definately look forward to reading anything he writes in the future.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 21, 2010
I have often said to myself when I see a black man with a white woman...Why? This is a question I believe we all as black women have ask ourselves. Now that I have a 19 year old son I think about this more, he is a college student and dates white and black women. Me as a mother would love for him to marry a black woman...but his happiness is all that really matters..I quess.
Well James W. Lewis did a wonderful job with this book... So after dealing with the tired/no good brothers who have cheated and hurt us time and time again enough to make a sister date a white man? Is she a Sellout if she does? And what about our black men who get tired of the black woman drama with her guards up, jealous, and not trusting is that enough to make him date only white women? Does that make him a Sellout? What about the white woman who only dates black men? Sellout? And lets not forget about the white man who thinks and acts like a black man and loves black women? Is he a Sellout?
But this book is so much more...I read it in a day because I could not put it down. It takes a turn that I did not expect and actually has you on edge. I dont want to give anything away because its a must read. I'm glad that I read this book because it hits home in so many ways...I tell my son all the time when dating white women "just because she likes you doesnt mean her father does".
This book actually made me think more about the word Sellout...does it actually mean racist? Can we actually be prejudice against our own? What a great job James W. Lewis...I wish you much success and I will always be a fan!
Posted July 19, 2010
Sellout is a "standout," an easy read with an ending that you just won't believe! A real page-turner. I found myself reading quickly through the last few chapters, just bursting at the seams to see how things would end. The author created real-life characters, and in a thoughtful, thought-provoking way, addresses the issues facing interracial couples.
No matter what your race, your background, or your views on interracial dating, this book is entertaining and interesting. Sellout does not disappoint!
Posted March 27, 2011
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Posted March 30, 2013
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Posted November 13, 2011
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