Katrina Spencer is the author of Six O’clock and lives in Texas with her husband and daughter. She readily admits that if she was trapped on a desert island, the three things she couldn’t live without are her family, her bible, and her hair weave. Learn more about her at katrinaspencer.com and stop by her blog, Curl Up and Write, where she dishes about writing, hair and more. You can also follow her on Twitter and friend her on Facebook to catch more of her funny observations on the writing life.
Mariah "Weavy Wonder" Stevens doesn't take no for an answer. Her take charge, tough-as-nails exterior has helped her become Book Review Editor at Spirit Magazine—no small feat considering she's only 29. She lives in a stunning apartment in Manhattan, her clothes are ripped straight from the runways, and her manicured nails are never chipped. Life is good.
Her secret weapon? Her long, glorious weave, which she's been wearing since she was 16. It's her power, her strength, and she's completely addicted to it. She can't even remember what her real hair looks like.
In a sudden move, Spirit Magazine folds, and for the first time in her life, Mariah's left asking, “What's next?” With her savings dwindling, she's forced to remove her weave and make the call that she hasn't made in years—the call home.
Now Mariah is back home in Houston, living with her well-to-do biracial sister and light skinned mother, both who are blessed with hair long enough to sleep in. Mariah has always stuck out like a sore thumb, and is constantly reminded of such with her dark skin and kinky short hair.
Living in Houston has Mariah facing her old demons and without the support of her weave she's losing her most important asset: her confidence. When she discovers a family secret, it opens the doors to her past and threatens to break her already fragile world apart. With her sister by her side, Mariah is determined to learn the truth.
Unbeweaveable is about Mariah's quest to confront questions of love, loyalty, and family to find her way back home.
Why should we read Unbeweaveable?
Because you’ll open the book and think it’s ‘just about hair’ and see that it touches on so many other issues—the prejudices within our own race, the power of forgiveness, and the importance of family. But above all else? It’s a great story and an entertaining read.
What called you to write Unbeweaveable?
Let’s face it, hair weave is a part of our culture. Even if you don’t wear it, you have to admit the impact it’s made in women’s lives—black and white alike. When I was a hairstylist, I specialized in weave, so I wore it a lot—my hair was a form of advertising. When I stopped doing hair, I didn’t wear my weave as much, and I felt a vast difference in my confidence when I wasn’t wearing the weave. I had to give myself pep talks, reminding myself that I was beautiful—with or without the weave. It got me thinking, “With so many women wearing weave, what would happen to a woman’s confidence if she wore weave all the time?” Then the idea for Unbeweaveable was born.
I think a lot of women can identify with Unbeweaveable’s main character, Mariah—a strong woman who loses her way when she places her faith and self-confidence—misguidingly—in a material object, only to have that object taken away, leaving her very foundation crumbled. What reactions have you received from women who have read Unbeweaveable?
I have received so many POSITIVE emails from my readers; it astounds me how this book have affected people. That’s one of the perks of being a writer, hearing from your readers and knowing that something you create touches them. Several people told me that the title was so zany that they expected the book to be fluff. They were surprised about the deep issues the book touched on. I was so glad that people got the message of the book—that loving yourself is the most beautiful thing in the world.
Fill in the statement: Hair is to Mariah as AIR is to Katrina.
Word Association: Think fast: What’s the first thought that comes to you when you read the following words:
Writing: My passion
Love: My family
Family: My lifeline
Katrina Spencer: Wife, mother and loyal friend