by Colette Barris
Claretta Street the first novel by Colette Barris is the story of Pacoima, a bustling little town in the sixties located in the San Fernando Valley of Southern California. Claretta Street follows the lives of four young African American girls known as the Babies, growing up in the vortex of the turbulent change of the sixties becoming young adults in the decadent and destructive eighties. Today countless discussions on the peril of Black America proliferates the media, academia and social scientists in real time; propelling this continuous Greek tragedy into the main frame of America and the world. However, the incendiary foundation and epoch of this unfolding disaster must be told and the veil of destruction exposed-the eighties. Claretta Street by Colette Barris takes the reader on a ride of unbelievable clarity and cause, as Denise in ancient griot form becomes the voice of the diaspora both prophetic and naive. Stripping down in plain view the causes and emotions of a time of great hope and sadness to preserve through decadence and decline. Claretta Street is the story of hope and change coupled with the unfortunate forces and juxtaposition of man s inhumanity and struggle all the while seeking hope and love. Pacoima provides the foundation for Colette Barris s remarkable journey to author, she is a graduate of the University of Southern California.