From the Corner to the Corner Office


An impassioned, inspiring motivational manifesto.

An African-American man shares his evolution from drug dealer to college-graduate professional, social analysis, and empowerment tips in this debut motivational memoir.

Barlow describes his narrative, aimed particularly at minority youth, as a “semi- autobiographical/motivational book based on the premise that no one is born a failure…period.” Instead, “minorities must contend with a plethora of obstacles which are mainly a result of the disparate treatment they have endured for generations.” After providing supporting statistics, Barlow segues into his life story. Born in Harlem in 1971, he was abandoned by his mother at an early age and primarily raised by his father and grandmother. His father encouraged him to be a critical thinker and held a regular job, but had money-management issues, having “been a hustler for most of his life…used to fast money.” At age 13, Barlow became a drug dealer’s lookout and then a pusher himself, dropping out of high school at 16. At 18, after almost getting arrested a second time, which would have meant significant jail time, Barlow moved back with his grandmother, finished high school at night while working regular jobs, and then attended and graduated from college. Now “a senior legal assistant, easily grossing six figures,” Barlow is proud that “my relationship with my daughters is the testament of a misguided teenager who evolved into a well-rounded man and exemplary father.” Close to this volume’s midpoint, the author offers his “blueprint for success,” focused on how to become an “intellectual gangsta” (with a helpful reading list provided) and concluding with social and racial commentary. The Autobiography of Malcolm X is No. 1 on the reading list, and this book has a similar intensity and advocacy. Barlow’s recollections of his days as a dealer are particularly evocative, even shocking, with the author at one point noting that he worked the same hallway with several other pushers because “there were so many customers that we still made money.” In his social criticism, Barlow addresses government involvement in the Flint, Michigan, water crisis: “The residents of Flint, Michigan, the majority of whom are black and impoverished, were knowingly allowed to drink and bathe in water contaminated with lead.”

An impassioned, inspiring motivational manifesto.

Pub Date: July 27, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4834-4949-4

Page Count: 110

Publisher: Lulu

Review Posted Online: Sept. 12, 2016



This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996




An extravaganza in Bemelmans' inimitable vein, but written almost dead pan, with sly, amusing, sometimes biting undertones, breaking through. For Bemelmans was "the man who came to cocktails". And his hostess was Lady Mendl (Elsie de Wolfe), arbiter of American decorating taste over a generation. Lady Mendl was an incredible person,- self-made in proper American tradition on the one hand, for she had been haunted by the poverty of her childhood, and the years of struggle up from its ugliness,- until she became synonymous with the exotic, exquisite, worshipper at beauty's whrine. Bemelmans draws a portrait in extremes, through apt descriptions, through hilarious anecdote, through surprisingly sympathetic and understanding bits of appreciation. The scene shifts from Hollywood to the home she loved the best in Versailles. One meets in passing a vast roster of famous figures of the international and artistic set. And always one feels Bemelmans, slightly offstage, observing, recording, commenting, illustrated.

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 1955

ISBN: 0670717797

Page Count: -

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1955

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