ReShonda
Bestselling Author
Award Winning Poet, Novelist & Journalist
Travels from: Houston, Texas

“ReShonda Tate has written a moving, insightful portrayal of a legend I thought that I knew. From the very first page, she locked me into the story and never let me go. I felt like I was living Hattie’s life, traveling with her through all of her loves and all of her losses, all of her tragedies and definitely her triumphs. This beautifully written novel is a brilliant portrayal of a conflicted woman, struggling to find her place in a world that didn’t accept her. Definitely a must-read.” — Victoria Christopher Murray, New York Times bestselling author of The First Ladies

 

As the national bestselling author of more than 50 books, ReShonda Tate has the credentials, and the passion, to bring stories to life. That’s exactly what she does in her latest novel, The Queen of Sugar Hill (William Morrow, Jan. 30, 2024), a fascinating fictional portrait of Hattie McDaniel, one of Hollywood’s most prolific but woefully underappreciated stars, and the first Black person to win an Oscar for her role as Mammy in the film classic Gone With the Wind.

A highly sought-after motivational speaker and award-winning poet, ReShonda is the recipient of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literature for her book Say Amen, Again and she was also nominated for her books Mama’s Boy and The Secret She Kept. She has received a plethora of distinguished awards and honors for her journalism, fiction, and poetry writing skills, including an induction into the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame and the Texas Literary Hall of Fame. Her books have been featured in numerous magazines, including USA Today, The Washington Post, Jet, People, Essence, and Ebony.

The Queen of Sugar Hill is ReShonda’s debut historical fiction novel, but she has written for both adults and teens, as well as nonfiction. Her sophomore novel, Let the Church Say Amen, was made into a film directed by actress Regina King, and produced by TD Jakes and Queen Latifah. ReShonda made her on-screen movie debut in the film which aired on BET and Netflix. Her book, The Secret She Kept, was also made into a movie and aired on TV One. ReShonda made a cameo in that movie as well.

A well-respected journalist for more than three decades, ReShonda has worked as a Television Reporter and Anchor for stations in Oklahoma City, Beaumont, and Houston. She is also Managing Editor for the Houston Defender Newspaper, as well as a radio news anchor and talk show host at KTSU Radio, 90.9 FM. She also works as a professional editor, ghostwriter, and literary consultant.

ReShonda is also the co-founder of the boutique publishing company, Brown Girls Books, with Victoria Christopher Murray. The company, which is aimed at producing quality books from fresh voices and fan favorites, boasts a roster of more than 40 authors. BGB’s subsidiary company, Brown Girls Entertainment, is branching out into the multimedia landscape, producing content for film, TV and the web.

A graduate of The University of Texas at Austin, ReShonda is a member of the Missouri City – Sugar Land Chapters of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and Jack & Jill of America. She is married to Jeffrey Caradine and is the mother of three children ages 23, 21, and 16, and two bonus children, ages 24 and 23.

ReShonda's Featured Titles

The Queen of Sugar Hill: A Novel of Hattie McDaniel

William Morrow Paperbacks |
Biographical Historical Fiction

Bestselling author ReShonda Tate presents a fascinating fictional portrait of Hattie McDaniel, one of Hollywood’s most prolific but woefully underappreciated stars—and the first Black person ever to win an Oscar for her role as Mammy in the critically acclaimed film classic Gone With the Wind.

It was supposed to be the highlight of her career, the pinnacle for which she’d worked all her life. And as Hattie McDaniel took the stage in 1940 to claim an honor that would make her the first African-American woman to win an Academy Award, she tearfully took her place in history. Between personal triumphs and tragedies, heartbreaking losses, and severe setbacks, this historic night of winning best supporting actress for her role as the sassy Mammy in the controversial movie Gone With the Wind was going to be life-changing. Or so she thought.

Months after winning the award, not only did the Oscar curse set in where Hattie couldn’t find work, but she found herself thrust in the middle of two worlds—Black and White—and not being welcomed in either. Whites only saw her as Mammy and Blacks detested the demeaning portrayal. As the NAACP waged an all-out war against Hattie and actors like her, the emotionally conflicted actor found herself struggling daily.

Through it all, Hattie continued her fight to pave a path for other Negro actors, while focusing on war efforts, fighting housing discrimination, and navigating four failed marriages. Luckily, she had a core group of friends to help her out—from Clark Gable to Louise Beavers to Ruby Berkley Goodwin and Dorothy Dandridge.

The Queen of Sugar Hill brings to life the powerful story of one woman who was driven by many passions—ambition, love, sex, family, friendship, and equality. In re-creating Hattie’s story, ReShonda Tate delivers an unforgettable novel of resilience, dedication, and determination—about what it takes to achieve your dreams—even when everything—and everyone—is against you.

Miss Pearly’s Girls: A Captivating Tale of Family Healing

Dafina |
Women’s Fiction

In this captivating family drama from award-winning, bestselling author ReShonda Tate Billingsley, four estranged sisters must return to rural Arkansas when their mother is diagnosed with a terminal illness. Their mother wants them to repair their shattered relationships, but first they’ll have to face the lies and obstacles they’ve worked so hard to leave behind…

Raising four very different daughters on her own in rural Arkansas wasn’t easy for Miss Pearly Bell. And she’s always regretted that the sisters went their separate ways for good—and never wanted to see each other again. But when Pearly is stricken with a terminal illness, she summons them all home—determined to somehow help them get right with each other and forgive…But that means dealing with past secrets and lies first.

As the oldest sister, pastor’s wife Maxine took her responsibility way too seriously—and never fails to judge everyone else. But a secret she can no longer keep will explode everything she stands for. Youngest sister Leslie is all about making a very different life with her new love—but she didn’t expect a shattering past truth to be suddenly revealed and uproot everything she ever thought she knew. Elegant PR professional Stella and her earthy twin, Star, don’t see eye-to-eye on anything—and now a long-ago deception could wipe out their last chance at a relationship.

Soon each sister must confront the illusions they’ve taken refuge in for so long and deal with each other woman-to-woman. But can building an all-too-fragile trust repair the damage done—and help them come together when they are needed most?

The Stolen Daughter

Dafina |
Women’s Fiction

Award-winning author ReShonda Tate Billingsley delivers a poignant, page-turning novel about the power—and fragility—of family, personal identity, and the choices we are called on to make . . .

Raised by a widowed mother, Jill Reed has come a long way from her difficult youth. But while she may not have had money, Jill never doubted she was rich in love. Her mother, Connie, made Jill the center of her world. Now, even though she has a young family of her own, it’s Jill’s turn to care for her ailing mother.

When early dementia begins to set in, Connie starts talking about Jill’s “other life.” Jill assumes it’s just rambling confusion. Still, Connie’s stories about Jill’s childhood, and her father’s early death, never quite added up. And when a strange man shows up to Jill’s job bearing news that turns Jill’s life upside down, there’s no denying Connie’s devastating secret.

As Jill sets out to learn more about her past, she’s stunned by what she learns and what it will mean for her future. Now, she must decide what price she’s willing to pay to claim the life that’s rightfully hers.

The Motherhood Diaries

Strebor |
Motherhood and Parenting

As a mother, you love your kids and you’d do anything for them—but chances are you’ve probably wondered, “What in the world was I thinking?” The Motherhood Diaries is full of humorous and enlightening stories from mothers who have wondered the same thing.

As the working mother of three children, ReShonda Tate Billingsley knows motherhood isn’t a perfect science. She openly shares stories with her thousands of followers on social media about her children: thirteen-year-old Mya, the diva whose Instagram post—and subsequent punishment—went viral; ten-year-old Morgan, who has a serious case of middle-child syndrome and a knack for giving her teachers a few of her mother’s favorite things; and finally, Myles, a witty and precocious five-year-old who, as his grandmother says, “has been here before.” It was while chronicling her journey that she discovered she wasn’t the only mother who longed for the days when she could use the restroom in peace, who sometimes sat in the driveway because she didn’t want to go in the house, and who sometimes wondered, is this what I signed up forHence, The Motherhood Diaries was born.

Through humorous and enlightening dialogue and narrative, ReShonda chronicles her own journey, as well as reveals candid imperfections of a mother trying to balance it all. With humorous and heartwarming stories from other mothers also trying to “get it right,” The Motherhood Diaries shares candid and honest conversations about the good, the bad and the downright disastrous path of mothering in the New Millennium.

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The legendary Hattie McDaniel

As the critically-acclaimed and often controversial big screen epic “Gone with the Wind” celebrates it’s 85th anniversary this year, ReShonda is poised to discuss one of the biggest stars to emerge from the drama – Hattie McDaniel. After years of extensive research, ReShonda presents a fascinating fictional portrait of McDaniel, one of Hollywood’s most prolific but woefully underappreciated stars—and the first Black person ever to win an Oscar for her role as Mammy. She shines a light on this legendary actor, her amazing friendship with actors like Clark Gable and Betty Davis, and discusses the triumphs and tragedies of McDaniel.

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So you want to write?

With many books to her credit, ReShonda has come a long way from when she self published her first novel in 2000. She shares her secrets to success and how you can bring out the writer in you.

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Parenting in the new millinium

Long before social media ‘shaming’ was popular, ReShonda made international news when she posted a punishment picture of her daughter on Facebook.

Believing that parents have to find new ways to discipline in the new millennium, she explored nontraditional punishments and found what worked best for her kids. But there is a fine line when it comes to parenting in the new millennium and ReShonda can speak about how to walk that line and raise happy, productive children.  She also talks about the latest technology that every parent should be aware of!

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Pursuing your passion

Are you doing what you were called to do? ReShonda talks about tapping into your passion to live a purpose-filled life.

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Why community unity is important

As a journalist with more than three decades of experience, ReShonda has seen firsthand what a collective effort can do for communities.

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Dream on!

In this spirited presentation for young people, ReShonda rallies youth not to let anyone stand in the way of their destiny and helps arm them with the tools to succeed in life.

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Black Hollywood and beyond

An avid Old Hollywood fan, ReShonda has spent years of researching some of the country’s biggest movie stars, with a particular affinity for Black Hollywood. Her talks include riveting insight that uncovers the bold manner in which many African Americans made a place for themselves in an industry where they were often included – and the white stars who helped them find their place in history.

Coming Soon!

Honors, Awards & Recognition

16 Best Books to Have on Your Radar in 2024, Essence Magazine
Texas Literary Hall of Fame – October, 2022
Texas Top Author – 2019
NAACP Image Award Nominee for Outstanding Literature – Mama’s Boy 2015
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literature – Say Amen, Again 2012
NAACP Image Award Nominee for Outstanding Literature – The Secret She Kept 2013
Arkansas Black Hall of Fame 2014
Houston Library Author of the Year – 2020
Houston’s Top Ten Authors – 2015
Rolling Out Magazine Top 25 Woman of Houston
Romantic Times Book of the Year 2007 (I Know I’ve Been Changed)
Library Journal Best Christian Fiction 2004 (Let the Church Say Amen)
National Association of Black Journalists Creative Spirit Award
YMCA Minority Achiever
Houston Top Professional
Houston Chronicle’s Woman on the Move
Houston Association of Black Journalists Regional Awards
Press Club of Houston Awards for Outstanding Reporting
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Jack and Jill of America, Inc.

Media Kit

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where you can download author photos and cover images.

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