Newman, Alison Mills



Alison Mills Newman’s novel Francisco—“profoundly underappreciated” (NY Times)—has long been out of print and impossible to find. Written in her early twenties in a “fluently funky mix of standard and nonstandard English” (Harryette Mullen), Mills Newman tells the vibrant story of a young black woman’s love affair with an indie filmmaker, Francisco. Described as “a portrait of the artist as a young black woman trying to find a way back to herself” in the new foreword by Saidiya Hartman, Francisco unfolds like an on-the-road diary of a young actress and musician as she becomes increasingly disillusioned with success in Hollywood. She chronicles her bohemian life with her filmmaker lover, visiting friends and family up and down California, and her involvement in the 1970s Black Arts movement. Angela Davis, Muhammad Ali, Pharoah Sanders, Melvin Van Peebles, Frank Silvera, and Amiri Baraka make appearances, along with other artists and writers like Ishmael Reed and Joe Overstreet. Love and friendship, long revealing conversations, parties and dancing in Berkeley and LA—Francisco celebrates “the workins of a positive alive life that is good value, quality, carin, truth . . . the gift of art for the survival of the human heart."


Alison Mills Newman started her career as the first African American teenage actress on a television series (Julia). As a musician and vocalist she has performed with Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry, Weather Report, and Taj Mahal. She is an award-winning film director and the author of the novel Maggie 3. Mills Newman is the president of Keep the Faith Film Ministries, a chaplain at Fulton County Jail, and has five beautiful children with the late Francisco Toscono Newman, as well as ten grandchildren.