Author of THE TALKING DRUM
(INANNA PUBLICATIONS, MAY 2020)
Lisa Braxton is an Emmy-nominated former television journalist, an essayist, short story writer, and novelist. Her debut novel, The Talking Drum, is forthcoming from Inanna Publications in spring 2020. She is a fellow of the Kimbilio Fiction Writers Program and a book reviewer for 2040 Review.
Her stories and essays have appeared in Vermont Literary Review, Black Lives Have Always Mattered, Chicken Soup for the Soul and The Book of Hope. She received Honorable Mention in Writer’s Digest magazine’s 84th and 86th annual writing contests in the inspirational essay category.
She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Media from Hampton University, her Master of Science degree in Journalism from Northwestern University and her Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing from Southern New Hampshire University.
About THE TALKING DRUM
It is 1971. The fictional city of Bellport, Massachusetts, is in decline with an urban redevelopment project on the horizon expected to transform this dying factory town into a thriving economic center.
This planned transformation has a profound effect on the residents who live in Bellport as their own personal transformations take place.
Sydney Stallworth steps away from her fellowship and law studies at an elite university to support husband Malachi’s dream of opening a business in the heart of the black community of his hometown, Bellport.
For Omar Bassari, an immigrant from Senegal, Bellport is where he will establish his drumming career and the launching pad from which he will spread African culture across the world, while trying to hold onto his marriage.
Della Tolliver has built a fragile sanctuary in Bellport for herself, social activist boyfriend Kwamé Rodriguez, and daughter Jasmine, a troubled child prone to nightmares and outbursts.
Tensions rise as the demolition date moves closer, plans for gentrification are laid out, and the pace of suspicious fires picks up. The residents find themselves at odds with a political system manipulating their lives and question the future of their relationships.
The Talking Drum explores intra-racial, class, and cross-cultural tensions, along with the meaning of community and belonging.