A very moving and inspirational poem by an influential black poet of the Harlem Renissance era, begins our main character's search in life, to climb the crystal stair. The story moves you through the remarkable life of, Maxine, her mother Rose, and Maxines's siblings. It is a story of difficult choices that the characters made in life, different lifestyles, tragedies and triumphs, and spans four decades of life for the black Bostonian family. This saga is a Yes I Can book.
The beginning of the story takes place in the 1950's in Boston's black working class districts, and continues to the present time, 2000. Maxine has serious choices that she has to make in her life, and the choices she makes are not always predictable. Growing up in a working class, dysfunctional family, with a strong mother whom she loves and respects, a shadowy father, who moves in and out of her life, and her many siblings, all who have stories to tell of their own, makes for interesting reading.
The opening scene begins with Maxine leading her family to safety from a horrific house fire in which everything material was lost. The family has to move until their house is rebuilt. Maxine lives through the violent break up of her mother and stepfather, makes some serious changes in her own life, thereby alienating her from her friends, but opening up the door to a new way of life. Little did Maxine know, but some of her life begins to mirror her mother's in many ways.
Throughout the many ups and downs in her life as she searches for the meaning of the crystal stair, readers will laugh, cry and finally feel the joys that Maxine discovers. This book gives a behind the veil peek at a black American girl who takes an unknown path in her search for answers, she chooses to become a Muslim in the 1960's Civil Rights Era. Follow her through adulthood. In Search of the Crystal Stair is about difficult choices one makes in life, rebuilding after tragedy strikes, and never giving up hopes of finding the object of your dreams.
The story is short, a novella, but it is packed full of heart and soul. Many readers will identify with it whether they are young or old. It crosses racial and ethnic barriers in its push to encourage others to dream, and work to accomplish their dreams despite difficulties.