Confessions in B-Flat: A Book Review and Recipe Links

I do hope everyone had a very happy holiday (considering).  It was all relaxing and low key here.  We did make a lot of phone calls and zoomed to open presents with Mom, Sis, the BiL, and Nephews I and II.   Like I said, considering, it was a great holiday.  I’ll highlight all of our kitchen and food gifts soon for “In My Kitchen.”

Today, I want to highlight a book for the TLC book tour:  Confessions in B-Flat by Donna Hill.

About the book:

Essence bestselling author Donna Hill brings us an emotional love story set against the powerful backdrop of the civil rights movement that gripped a nation―a story as timely as it is timeless…

The year is 1963. In Harlem, the epicenter of Black culture, the fight for equality has never been stronger. The time is now. Enough is enough. Yet even within its ranks, a different kind of battle rages. Love thy neighbor? Or rise up against your oppressors?

Jason Tanner has just arrived in New York to help spread the message of his mentor, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., of passive resistance, while beat poet Anita Hopkins believes the teachings of Malcolm X with all her heart: that the way to true freedom is “by any means necessary.” When Jason sees Anita perform her poetry at the iconic B-Flat lounge, he’s transfixed. And Anita has never met anyone who can match her wit for wit like this…

One movement, two warring ideologies–can love be enough to unite them?

Confessions in B-Flat is a celebration of the hard-won victories of those who came before us, and a stark reminder of just how far we still have to go.

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

Entangled Publishing

Connect with Donna

Website | Facebook | Instagram

What I thought…

I was expecting a history review and lessons about the Civil Rights Movement and less of a romance.  I got a bit both.  I usually stay away from novels with the “romance” label but I’m glad I didn’t here.

Hill weaves a tale about two idealists.   Jason, a young man from Atlanta, travels to NYC to help with recruitment for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jrs.’ cause.  Anita, a native New Yorker, is a follower of Malcolm X.  They meet on a bus ride north and learn of the Birmingham bombing together.   Even though they have different ideologies, they fall in love.

As the two live through some of the most momentous and historical events of the decade (and maybe even of the century), the love story is the heart of this novel.   The two live through the assassinations of JFK and Malcom X, the Bed-Stuy and Harlem riots, and the Vietnam war.

The only criticism I have for the novel is that of the history.   There are historical photos and links sprinkled throughout the book that I found hurt the flow of the novel.  I would have preferred these positioned in the center of the book (like with some biographies and non-fiction works) or at the end.   I sometimes, also, wanted a bit more, a bit more of what Jason and Anita were feeling during these tumultuous times.

Overall, I did enjoy the novel and will be passing it along.

The Food:

There’s a great deal of good Southern food in the novel.  Jason grew up in the Atlanta but Anita’s family also had roots in the South.  Here’s what was mentioned:

  • Peach cobbler
  • Pizza
  • Chicken and waffles
  • Spaghetti (with sausage, ground beef, green peppers, and tomatoes)
  • Bacon, home fries, grits, and eggs
  • Diner food (burgers, wings, fries)
  • Street vendor pretzels
  • Ribs, spicy collard greens, potato salad
  • Thanksgiving dinner (fresh green beans simmering in seasonings and a smoked turkey neck, macaroni and cheese, ham with pineapple and maraschino cherries, turkey)
  • Food from Paschal’s (fried chicken, peach cobbler)
  • Rum and coke
  • Sweet potato and apple pies
  • Sweet tea

I’m sure I missed some references.   And, since it is still the holiday season and I can’t honestly cook anything more—there’s just too much stuff in the fridge.  (I won’t even mention eating more.)

So, instead of cooking something inspired by Confessions in B-Flat, I will point you in the direction of some previously posted recipes that I would have revisited if I had the time.

Peach Cobbler




Apple Pie(s)

Please check out the other reviews on the TLC tour:


Tuesday, November 24th: She Just Loves Books and @shejustlovesbooks

Monday, November 30th: @never_withouta_book

Tuesday, December 1st: @careylovestobook

Friday, December 4th: @the_unwined

Friday, December 4th: Run Wright and @karen_runwright

Monday, December 7th: Not in Jersey and @notinjersey

Wednesday, December 9th: @booksaremagictoo

Thursday, December 10th: @kpthebookworm

Friday, December 11th: @itsbibliotherapy

Monday, December 14th: Nurse Bookie and @nurse_bookie

Wednesday, December 16th: @mrsboomreads

Thursday, December 17th: Blunt Scissors Book Reviews and @bluntscissorsbookreviews

Monday, December 21st: @babygotbooks4life

Monday, December 28th: Eliot’s Eats


8 comments to Confessions in B-Flat: A Book Review and Recipe Links

  • My fridge is also LOADED with food…and I still want to bake and cook. LOL…too much time during the lockdown.

    • With all the time at home and the few days off of teleworking, I did want to cook a lot. With all the sweet stuff I made, I should not be baking cookies anytime soon.

  • I’m with you in that I like the historical pictures and references either at the end or grouped in the middle. sounds like an interesting book. Peach cobbler is a classic and so delicious!

  • Mae

    That list is very intriguing. I wonder how well-researched it is, in terms of foods that were really popular in that era. It looks ok but I really don’t know anything about New York food. I think my antipathy to romance novels is stronger than yours, so I guess I wouldn’t choose to read it.

    be well and have a great New Year’s holiday… mae at

    • I would say that it is very well researched (at least what I’ve read about Hill would lead me to believe that). I am glad I read it, romance and all 🙂

  • I am not familiar with this book, perhaps because i am in the UK and its not on peoples radar in the same way. I also steer away from romance novels, but I am admirer of both MLK and MX so you have peaked my interest and i would very much like to read this book, so may in the future come to order it, as i have a number of others on my shelf to read first, but i will get there. Thank you so much for sharing and putting it on my radar.