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NICK CHILES, an award-winning journalist, has written for Essence, Dallas Morning News, New York Times, Newsday, and other publications. He won a Pulitzer Prize as part of the New York Newsday staff covering a fatal subway crash in 1992. One of his short stories appeared in Brotherman: The Odyssey of Black Men in America (Ballantine), an anthology that won a 1996 American Book Award. The editor-in-chief of Odyssey Couleur, a multicultural travel magazine, he currently resides in the Atlanta metro area with his wife, Denene Millner.
EVERY LITTLE STEP
by Bobby Brown and Nick Chiles
Dey Street Books – June 13, 2016
New York Times Bestseller
Bobby Brown, the singer, dancer, and all-around amazing performer, first became famous at the age of fourteen as a part of the Boston group New Edition. But it was his solo career and the release of his 1988 album, Don’t Be Cruel, with its chart-topping title track, as well as hit songs “My Prerogative” and “Every Little Step,” that made him infamous. As he toured the world, wowing fans, scoring hit after hit, earning millions, Brown found himself the fodder of tabloids. When he married the most celebrated singer in the world at the time, pop princess Whitney Houston, he began a life under a microscope. The couple’s every move was tracked, and jaw-dropping stories were told about drug addiction, physical violence, and worse, with Brown always cast as the villain. Forever branded, Brown was trapped in a spiral of rage against the media and drug addiction, fighting for the will to get himself clean and keep his family together.
Now the man behind the misconceptions, rumors, and lies bares his soul. In this honest, raw, and at times heartbreaking account, Brown tells the truth of his life. Every Little Step is the story of a kid growing up in the projects of Boston, always on the move and always looking for an audience. Brown reveals what really happened when he left New Edition to launch his solo career and tales of his relationships with some of the most prominent pop divas in the world, including intimate details of his marriage to Houston that describe the purity of their love and the devastation he felt as it crumbled. Most poignantly, he finally speaks about losing his beloved daughter Bobbi Kristina. And through it all, Brown shows himself to be a family man, devoted to his children and his wife; a man who cared for both of his parents right up until their deaths; and a man who can admit where he faltered, but had the strength to stand up again.
I became famous with New Edition when I was just fourteen.
As a solo artist, I released an album before my twentieth birthday that many have noted as altering the course of R & B music. In my twenties, I fell in love with the biggest music star on the planet. Our marriage kept more than a few gossip tabloids in business.
I am still trying to grapple with the incredible pain and trauma of losing my daughter.
But despite my three decades in the harsh media glare, the public has never really heard my story. What Bobby Brown is thinking, what he’s doing, what he did do, what he didn’t do.
Early on, I cemented my reputation as “the bad boy of R & B.” And it stuck. But now that label feels too one-dimensional. I feel like I owe it to myself and the ones I love, and will always love, to be honest.
I want to tell the real story.
THE REJECTED STONE
Cash Money Content/Simon & Schuster – October 8, 2013
Lord knows, Rev Al has had his personal and very public ups and downs – but he’s come out bigger and better than ever. Though the host of MSNBC’s PoliticsNation is as fiery and outspoken as ever about the events and issues that matter most, he’s learned that the only way we can get right as a nation is by getting right from within.
In this, his first book in over a decade, Rev Al will take you behind the scenes of some unexpected places – from officiating Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston’s funerals, hanging out with Jay-Z and President Barack Obama at the White House, to taking charge of the Trayvon Martin case. And he will discuss how he came to his unexpected conclusions in such areas as Immigration, Gay Rights, Religion and the Family. But the heart of the book is an intimate discussion of his own personal evolution from street activist, pulpit provocateur and civil rights leader to the man he is today – one hundred pounds slimmer, and according to the New York Observer “the most thoughtful voice on cable.” No, the Rev. Al you met ten years ago isn’t the same man you’ll meet today. And he has a simple promise. We can transform this nation and we can all lead better lives if we’re willing to transform our hearts and transform our minds.
By Etan Thomas with Nick Chiles
New American Library – May 1, 2012
“Be there. Those seven letters encompass the tao of fatherhood.” —Etan Thomas
In Fatherhood, beloved NBA player, poet, youth advocate, and devoted dad Etan Thomas speaks from his heart on what matters most in his life: being there for his children. As a highly respected player in the NBA and a leading participant in President Obama’s Fatherhood Initiative, Etan has reached out to young men (often young fathers) in the juvenile detention system and in local communities. He knows firsthand the difference having a father in your life every day can make—and as a father of three, Etan walks the talk in his own life.
Now he brings together a chorus of voices—highly revered professional athletes and coaches, actors and performing artists, politicians and leaders of faith—to weigh in on the importance of being a father in our nation today. Isaiah Washington, Howard Dean, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Taye Diggs, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Tony Hawk, Al Sharpton, Chuck D and many more share what they’ve learned from being a father, having a father, or in some cases not having a father around.
Through these inspiring personal experiences, Etan and the men he’s gathered together hope to share the message that by standing up and taking an active role as fathers, men not only find their own lives more joyful and fulfilling—they pass on to the next generation an unshakable legacy of love, wisdom, responsibility, and strength.
By Kirk Franklin and Nick Chiles
Gotham – May 18, 2010
Seven-time Grammy award winning artist offers an inspiring blend of God and grit for building a fulfilling life.
“The Blueprint is a transparent approach to talking about issues-from marriage to politics to sex and religion-and it’s from my perspective. Not from a Princeton, mainline, protestant, evangelical or liberal viewpoint, but from a 2010 Christian moderate with swag.”
Gospel artist Kirk Franklin’s faith wasn’t always as strong as it is today. His father abandoned his family; his mother constantly told Kirk that he was an unwanted child and left him to be adopted when he was four; his sister became a crack addict; he never saw a black man who was faithful in marriage. Despite his shaky foundation he found strength and success through his music and through God.
In The Blueprint, Franklin will explain how by communicating with life’s architect, God, he learned to see hardships as necessary life propellants and moved on to become the bestselling gospel musician in recent history, as well as a devoted husband and loving father.
This is not a step program, it’s a lifelong journey. With Franklin’s guidance, you will:
-pursue your dreams without losing yourself in the chase
It’s time to take faith out of the church pews and into our everyday lives. With hope, devotion, and strength, The Blueprint offers a plan to help you move beyond hardships to create your own personal Blueprint for life.
Praise for THE BLUEPRINT
“One of the biggest superstars in gospel…Franklin revolutionized gospel with his hip, contemporary sound.”—Jet
“Kirk Franklin is his genre’s most consistently successful mainstream artists for the past fifteen years, thanks to his fusing of gospel messages with hip-hop and pop beats.”—USA Today
“Once again, Kirk Franklin takes the church beyond the traditional, transitioning his life’s experiences into life lessons. Clearly there is more to this man than great music. You will feel the beat of his heart and faith.”—T.D. Jakes
A LOVE STORY
By Denene Millner and Nick Chiles
Dutton Adult – June 3, 2004
The irresistible husband-and-wife duo behind Love Don’t Live Here Anymore and In Love and War returns with another romantic round of “his and hers” storytelling.
Writing with a winning combination of wit and dead-on savvy, Denene Millner and Nick Chiles take the tension up a notch in novels that unfold through alternating points of view. Now they apply their delicious he said/she said approach to the story of two childhood friends who wonder if the unbreakable bond they formed in their once-in-a-lifetime friendship would be in danger of snapping if they become lovers.
Aaron and Nina have been buddies ever since he moved into her neighborhood and offered her a piece of candy. Their families could not have been more different, but growing up across the street from each other helped these instant friends discover how much they actually had in common. Now, twenty-five years later, their friendship is stronger than ever. They’ve seen each other through a string of broken hearts and family feuds, but these playmates turned soul mates haven’t let their platonic love develop into anything more. With a lifetime of friendship at stake, is it worth it to take a chance on romance?
Fun and sexy, with secrets revealed at every turn, A Love Story proves that romance is even sweeter-and scarier-when the stakes are sky high.
Praise for A LOVE STORY
“The skillful and balanced rendering of his/her voices deepens the reader’s insights into the characters’ symbiotic relationship. This above-average summer romance should find its way to many beach blankets.” – Publishers Weekly
“Funny and real… Millner and her man bring alive the ‘everything-to-lose, everything-to-gain’ dynamic that intense attraction can create.” – Honey Magazine
“Perfect for hopeless romantics looking to learn how relationships really operate.” – Upscale
IN LOVE AND WAR
By Denene Millner and Nick Chiles
Dutton Adult – January 27, 2003
Denene Millner and Nick Chiles made waves with Love Don’t Live Here Anymore, their debut novel hailed by critics for its “insightful look at modern marriage” (Publisher’s Weekly) and its “humor, compassion and honesty” (Booklist).
In Love and War takes us into the lives of Zaria Chance, sister of Mikki Chance-Murphy, the female protagonist of Love Don’t Live Here Anymore, and Kenneth Roman, a teacher and basketball coach. When Zaria walks into Kenneth’s classroom to discuss her son’s unruly behavior, there is instant conflict as these two strong personalities go head-to-head-but there is also a powerful physical attraction. Though they see the world in completely different ways, it soon becomes clear they can’t live without each other. But when Kenneth gets caught in a colossal lie, Zaria must decide whether she can overcome her pain and outrage to take him back.
Told in alternating viewpoints, this warm-hearted, sensual novel gives us an intimate perspective on each of the main characters’ thoughts and feelings-the suspicions of the single mom and the panic of the wary bachelor. Peopled by a cast of complex and appealing characters drawn from real life and imbued with the candor, compassion, and humor that made their first novel a success, this Millner-Chiles tale is for anyone who has ever loved, lusted, and struggled to make a relationship work in the face of irrepressible drama and intense emotional baggage.
Praise for IN LOVE AND WAR
“A husband-wife team who blend two distinctive voices into a seamless, satisfying whole.” – Kirkus Reviews
“A penetrating portrayal of start-to-finish real love that unfolds with all of the bumps along the way.” – Upscale
“Funny and real…bring[s] alive the dynamic that intense attraction can create.” – Honey Magazine
“These sharp-tongued, intelligent protagonists crackle with life.” – Publishers Weekly
LOVE DON’T LIVE HERE ANYMORE
By Denene Millner and Nick Chiles
Dutton Adult – February 28, 2002
The Washington Post called Denene Millner and Nick Chiles’s What Brothers Think, What Sistahs Know “a funny and frank relationship survival guide.” Now this husband-and-wife writing team make their fiction debut in a spirited and original novel for anyone who has ever tried to find the right balance between career and love—in the face of ambition, financial struggle, and sexual temptation.
Randy Murphy and Mikki Chance-Murphy are a contemporary couple whose marital bond is tested by the demands of their emerging professional lives. He is an ad executive who has temporarily relocated to Paris to pursue a prestigious account. She is a fashion designer living in Brooklyn, trying to move her struggling bridal boutique into the black.
Unfolding in alternating chapters from each of their points of view, Love Don’t Live Here Anymore tells the story of what happens to a marriage when infidelity and distance-both physical and emotional-enter the equation. As Mikki finds herself powerfully drawn to her husband’s best friend, it will take some major shaking up-not to mention faith, understanding, and lots of love-to put the pieces of their marriage back together. If it’s not too late.
A novel about the choices that shape our lives and relationships, this is a moving and captivating addition to contemporary African-American fiction.
Praise for LOVE DON’T LIVE HERE ANYMORE
“Love Don’t Live Here Anymore is wise, witty, and loads of fun, a charming, tender story for anyone who believes in the power of love.” – Valerie Wilson Wesley, author of Ain’t Nobody’s Business If I Do
“This husband-and-wife team again tackles the complex issues that couples face, but they broaden their successful theme of exposing the male and female perspective now in a powerful fiction debut….Millner and Chiles’s first novel is written with humor, compassion, and honesty.” – Booklist
“[An] entertaining first novel….An insightful look at modern marriage.” – Publishers Weekly
“Clever…filled with hip references and attitudes.” – Kirkus Reviews
“Love Don’t Live Here Anymore offers up real-life characters dealing with their problems head-on.” – Black Issues Book Review
“The book is perfect for hopeless romantics looking to learn how relationships really operate.” – Upscale
MONEY, POWER, RESPECT
By Denene Millner and Nick Chiles
William Morrow – January 9, 2001
First, In What Brothers Think, What Sistahs Know, the bold and beautiful Denene Milner and Nick Chiles gave the real deal of love and relationships. It was hailed as the African American Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus. Then, in What Brothers Think, What Sistahs Know About Sex, the savvy supercouple told African American daters and maters how to get it on and heat it up in the bedroom — or wherever else couple may find themselves.
Now Nick and Denene have set their sites on three of the hottest topics facing couples today. Money. Can he deal when she makes more? Power. He’s at the office 24/7. Where does she get her face-time? Respect. How much of their dirty laundry should both he and she air to their friends? In their inimitable he-said/she-said format and hip approach, Denene and Nick reveal the real deal on what black men and women think about financial issues, power struggles, and the importance of respect. They delve into everything , from whose career is more important to who should punish the kids to who should pay for dinner.
Enlivened by their trademark humor and sassy and bold approach, the message in Money, Power, Respect is crystal clear: While money issues may lead to power struggles, this doesn’t have to lead to lack of Respect. In this perspective and insightful guide, Nick and Denene show couples how engaging in fierce, sincere communication will have both partners wearing the pants in the family.
Praise for MONEY, POWER, RESPECT
Gold Pen Award Nominee, Black Writers Alliance
“[Millner and Chiles’s] lively book will spark debate.” – Publishers Weekly