Meet Constance Kluesener Gorman, author of The Great Black Hope. Constance is a private tutor, but also occasionally teaches business, chemistry and mathematic classes at local universities in Greater Cincinnati. She holds a B.A. in Chemistry from Miami University, an M.B.A. from the University of Cincinnati and a B.S. in Education from the McGregor School at Antioch University. Although Constance has been published as a writer in technical journals and other print media relating to her business career, The Great Black Hope is her first effort in writing a nonfiction novel. She plans to write and publish the remaining fifty-seven or so other stories relating to her spiritual favors and experiences. Welcome to Book Blather, Constance.
People can keep dark secrets or be in the closet about many things. An extra-marital affair, alcoholism or sexual abuse are some of the top secrets kept hidden in the deep recesses of someone’s daily living. However, the most common secret may be the inability to read, or rather, illiteracy. The Great Black Hope is a true-life story that chronicles the life of a high school student with a secret that haunted him for years. His name is Tony Daniels.
Tony, a youth from the inner city, always stood out as a talented football player ever since his years in grade school. By the time he reached high school, Tony was a standout on the football field racking up substantial sacks of the opposing team’s quarterback as a defensive lineman for his team. In December 2003, he was voted First Team – all districts- by The Cincinnati Enquirer’s All Stars group of football coaches and staff of Greater Cincinnati with 70 tackles, 30 tackles for a loss, 9 sacks and a fumble recovery.
Yet, despite all the accolades given to Tony for his football achievements, Tony suffered from a continual state of sadness. Deep inside him, he kept a secret so painful that he found it hard to share it with anyone. Then, Tony found he faced an obstacle that no street smarts or physical strength could conquer-illiteracy. Tony could read simple three or four letter words. But, words that contained vowel blends or multiple consonants were beyond his reach to comprehend. Tony survived school by cheating his whole way through in order to hide his disability. But, when the state proficiency tests came during 9th grade, and Tony was required to pass them in order to graduate from high school, he knew that his secret had to be told. It had to be told to SOMEBODY.
He couldn’t tell his mother because in his earlier grade school years he was somewhat of a discipline problem for the schools. Tony just didn’t want to disappoint his mother again! Looking back, Tony surmises that his issues at school all stemmed from his inability to read and the frustration he experienced when he couldn’t learn subject matter at the pace of the rest of his classmates. He couldn’t tell his best friend and older brother, Mike, because Mike was also a standout football player and Tony didn’t want to alarm him in any way. All in all, Tony didn’t want to disappoint anyone or be a burden to his family. So, he kept his illiteracy disability a secret until it was impossible to continue any longer.
At the time, I was a chemistry teacher at his high school. I had also taught Tony's brother, Mike, a year ahead of him at the same school. Mike was slightly academically challenged and never hesitated to get help from a teacher after school. He was on track for a college football scholarship and didn’t want to compromise his chances by getting a poor grade in any subject. I tutored him occasionally after school, along with many of my other students. With these tutoring sessions, Mike learned I was the type of teacher who would put in the time to help out one of her students. So, when Tony started having trouble in school the following year, Mike pointed him in my direction.
Tony shared his secret with me and, together, we embarked on an adventure to rid him of illiteracy, as well as his continual bouts with depression and a life threatening heart ailment. Once Tony became an avid reader, I continued mentoring him and helped him pursue his dreams of college football and the NFL. Along the way, Tony picked up other mentors, such as Levi Jones of the Cincinnati Bengals, Lawrence Taylor of the New York Giants and NFL Hall of Fame, and a consortium of heart surgeons at Ohio Heart.
The Great Black Hope is an inspirational story of hope for readers who may have a dark secret, suffer from depression or despair about one of the many bumps in the road of life. The book is currently being considered for a book-to-film project by the film industry.
The Great Black Hope can be purchased at Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Apple Stores, Sony, Kobo, Baker and Taylor and all other retail outlets in print and e-book format.
The Great Black Hope website: http://sufficientgracebook.weebly.com