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Table of Contents
Navigating life can be a challenge for any teenager, but some issues and struggles are unique to African American teens. This book offers some real life guidance that many African American teen girls need. In a conversational, teen-appropriate language and style, Billie Montgomery Cook addresses a wide range of topics, including:
• Body image• Self-esteem• Sexuality• Fear• Friendship• and much, much more
"This book is simply an essential tool in guiding you or your teen to a stronger level of self-respect, self-love, and a true relationship with Christ. I highly recommend it as a tool to engage in dialogue at home as well as at church or school. It easily bridges the gap between any age group, and proves that parents can, indeed, understand!" Naima A. C. Dodard, Newnan, GA
"I find this book very interesting because some of those issues she wrote to teen girls could very well apply to the 21+ age group, too. Her straight-forward writing keeps your attention, and, her biblical references will get you reading the Bible. She says her chapters only touch the surface. She is correct. She could say much more. However, touching the surface works for teen girls who need short, simple and real information. For those teens who want to read more, she suggests some additional resources. I would certainly recommend this book as a resource for a teen girl bible study group. With the mass of print and electronic media portraying girls as anything but Godly and virtuous, Cook's book establishes a different and higher standard of living." Karen Lemmons "APOOO Bookclub", Detroit, Michigan
"An essential part of every household with a teen girl, THE REAL DEAL enables teens to dig deep inside their spiritual selves to find answers to life's most common problems. What I enjoyed most about this book is that although it was written with teen girls in mind, it can also be used by adult women who suffer esteem issues or who aren't sure how to overcome various hurdles that come their way. Reading this book enabled me to do a little soul-searching and because of it I am stronger in my faith." Eraina B. Tinnin, The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers
"The Real Deal thoroughly and intensively attacks the worldly evils that confront today's African American teen girls, and upholds the joy they can find in God." Black Issues Book Review, November-December 2004
"Make this book a gift to your young lady!" gospeltoday.com, May/June 04
"Cook...has hit on a winning formula in her book as she speaks directly and personally to black teenage girls in a language they can understand." Online Review of Books and Current Affairs
"The Real Deal: A Spiritual Guide for Black Teen Girls is like a treasure of letters from a dear, understanding and insightful aunt, providing loving advice for living and reminders of the worth of each young woman's life." The Communicator, July/August 2004
"Black teen girls will pick up this book because it talks about the real deal. They'll be amazed how life-changing the real deal can be." CBA Marketplace, May 2004
"...A hard nosed, yet compassionate and illuminating must read for black teen girls (and their parents)." Wendy Reid ,Online Review of Books & Current Affairs
“As Black teen girls read this book, they will be empowered and comforted, and reminded of the fact that God is interested in the ‘real deal’ about their lives.” Jennifer Clue, Precious Times
"Billie Montgomery Cook covers a lot of valuable ground in relatively few pages. She addresses very well the concerns faced by her target audience and others...I would highly recommend this book for church discussion groups. It would also be a nice personal gift from family, godparents or youth workers." Donna L. Gilton,YouthWorker Journal, September/October 2007
"Publisher's Pick. Must Read! We recommend that parents read this book with their teenage girls to get a full understanding on 'the real deal'." Image magazine, Winter 2008
Billie Montgomery/Cook is a proud Spelman graduate ('73) and retired University Administrator (Old Dominion Univ.). She is a freelance writer, author, local history researcher, playwright and dramaturg. Additionally, she has served as Coordinator of Drama Ministry for a number of years (Third Bapt. Church) and is Creative Director of The Not-Just-for- February Players, an African American Readers Theatre Troupe.
Cook's first book published by Judson Press, The Real Deal: A Spiritual Guide for Black Teen Girls, is a national best seller! Initially written to her daughter, Jeanina (deceased) who was facing the trials of puberty, countless "daughters/nieces/granddaughters, etc.," along with rites of passage groups, church youth groups, VBS programming, sororities, social/civic groups, etc., use this text in helping "their daughters" to understand the importance of building a spiritual connection with God, the Father.
Sisters of Scripture: Mentors in Womanhood, Cook's second book with Judson was honored by winning The Illumination Award for Devotionals (2015, The Jenkins Group). This text has proven to be effective and exciting Bible study/ discussion resource material for not only singles/women's church groups and prison ministries (Sunday School, VBS, etc.) across the country but teen groups as well.
Billie Cook's latest book, Rise Up and Pray: Sustenance for A Pandemic, The 2020 Presidential Election and Beyond, is a collection of prayers taken from her Facebook pages over the span of the year 2020 during the time of universal Covid 19/pandemic confinement. So many things happened that year - so many lives lost, the presidential election and it's ongoing aftermath, etc. Like so many others, prayer became Cook's "lifeline". She shares them within these pages.
Billie M/Cook resides in Portsmouth, VA with her husband, (retired) Rev. Keith S. Cook. Presently, they are members of Ebenezer Baptist Church, Portsmouth, VA.
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