“What Looks like Crazy on an Ordinary Day” by Pearl Cleage

Written by Ella

Ava Johnson has HIV and that’s the only reason she knows she shouldn’t be afraid of it. She’s a hair-dresser in Atlanta with a long list of clients and lovers. After deciding to write letters to her partners to suggest they get tested, one guys wife walks in with the letter demanding Ava “take it back,” as if it’s that simple. Soon enough Ava starts losing customers (as if you can get HIV from a wash-and-set). Ava decides to forfeit the madness and move back to her hometown, Idelwild, Michigan –but the drama doesn’t cease. 

Who isn’t looking for an escape? Even I was as I read this book. Pearl Cleage’s novel features so many brilliant illustrations of accidental strength. She presents us with a rare glimmer of hope that says, “it’ll all be ok,” even in the face is extreme doubt and pure ignorance.  Sometimes, the best way to escape the realities of live is to walk right up to them and stand up for yourself how you feel.