Book Reviews

In My Shoes!


In YB Taylor’s Shoes, I found songs of truth. A rhythmic chant; our communal thoughts posed so precisely by this talented poet. At times it seems like she is reading my mind, distilling my thoughts into fluid chants of verse. Remarkably timely and timeless, our memories placed on the page with the melodies of our histories celebrated or challenged with every phrase. 

Daphne Maxwell Reid

"Very interesting!"

Raven Lynch, Head Buyer

VMFA Gift Shop


I See You!


"To ebony kings and queens for which the struggle continues."

I have always believed the best writing accomplishes several tasks. It commands your attention, evokes strong feeling, compels you to think, and inspires you to act. Y.B. Taylor excels in every regard. She garners your rapt attention and respect when she refrains, AIN’T GOT TIME FOR CRAZY!  

Reading Y.B. Taylor’s poetry evokes a multi-sensory experience. You almost smell the “oh-so sweet rich fertilized life-giving soil” of the Motherland in I SEE MYSELF. It is easy to visualize the poignant Gordon Parks photos in IMAGERY from the VMFA exhibit.  

Page after page, the rhythm of her writing, the syncopation of the verse bring to mind tribal drumbeats and village elders chanting, “yes, go, tell them my child.”  

Sabrina Squire, Award-winning News Anchor

Keeping It Real!


"To my mother, whom I physically resemble, and whose behaviors and actions I frequently emulate, but not as frequently as she would like."

This literary child of yours is filled with intellectual common sense and valuable information. After finishing the book, I found myself re-reading some of the poems. "I am Here Because..." inspired me to do a little librarian research on Rockfarm Estate; I saw the names Ned and Doily.  

Please continue to use your literary gift; it is impressive as well as informative.

Mary Jackson, Retired Librarian

“THE” ULTIMATE REVIEW - Your new book, “Keeping It Real!,” is GREAT!  I know you worked hard on this one.... It was a real page turner.  However, I couldn't have gotten through it without The "Write" Stuff and the Endnotes.  

My Mom!

Out of Bounds


"To my father, Archie Bernest Burrell (1928-2003), you remain an inspiration for many of my poems."

You surpassed the superlative with this book.  I began reading the first poem and asked my husband to listen.  He was enjoying it so much, I sat and read the entire book.  Of course, having an audience, the expressions became more pronounced with each entry.   My husband said, "Keep on writing - he enjoyed it."  I, too, wish your dad could see you now - a prolific writer.  

Mary Jackson, Retired Librarian

I am of the opinion that this is your best work to date. Powerful!  

Jerry Williams, Ardent Supporter

Journeys of Freedom


"To my parents, who started me on my journeys; to my husband, who supports my journeys; to my daughters, for whom I continue my journeys."

... I thoroughly enjoyed reading “Journeys of Freedom.”  Since [“What I Know...] taught me that every read reveals something new, I was even more excited as I approached my second and my third reads of this, your second book.   

As with the first book, the introductory quotes are brilliant and serve as a most unique trait for your works.  The selection and pairing of each is not only appropriate, but further serves to lift the meaning of your prose.   

While neither of your works allows the reader to decline to any sense of hopelessness, present in your first book was a smoldering anger many of us know all too well.  However, “Journeys of Freedom” seems to speak more of lessons to be taught and lessons to be learned.  So eloquently stated, there is an accountability inferred here that we, as stewards of our own history, cannot shirk.


What I Know...


"To those who have 'been there and done that'!

To those too young to remember!

To those who don't understand, but want to!"

Thank you for “What I Know ... .” 

I really enjoyed it.  

Nikki Giovanni

“Poems of Life” gives an insight and view from a little black girl to a successful black woman....  It takes you from pain to accomplishments seamlessly....  Although you are a “Lady of the Pen,” you are also myfriend; thanks for allowing me to walk in your GRACE and seeing LIFE from a black female's point of view....  Peace  

Darryl Ellis, DNA Fitness, LLC

Your book made me laugh and cry, and think. ... I don’t go a week without reading from it.  My favorite is “Renaissance Woman.”   

Ruth Stirling, Ruth Stirling Travel 

Where You Can Find...