PAKET UMROH BULAN FEBRUARI MARET APRIL MEI 2017

TRAVEL UMROH RESMI KEMENAG RI

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Lihat Biaya Umroh 2018 Lihat Paket Umroh Desember 2017





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LISt Harga Bahan Bangunan 2013

 

PASIR

Pasir Putih bangka / m3 : Rp. 265.000

Pasir Putih Bangka / pick up : Rp. 600.000

Pasir Putih Bangka / truk : Rp. 1.550.000

Pasir Mundu (per m3) : Rp. 250.000

Pasir Cileungsi / m3 : Rp. 200.000

BATU

Split / pick up : Rp. 265.000

Batako Semen Besar / buah : Rp. 2.500

Batu Bata Merah ( biasa )/ buah : Rp. 500

Batu Bata Merah ( oven ) / buah : Rp. 650

Batu Kali Belah / m3 : Rp. 185.000

Batu Knecker / m3 : Rp. 200.000

BATU ALAM

Batu Candi ( 30 x 30 ) / m2 : Rp. 150.000

Batu Andesit ( 30 x 30 ) / m2 : Rp. 180.000

Batu Pancawarna / 25 kg : Rp. 75.000

Batu Bali / 10 kg : Rp. 70.000

SEMEN

Semen Holcim ( 40 kg ) : Rp. 65.000

Semen Holcim ( 50 kg ) : Rp. 75.000

Semen Tiga Roda ( 50 kg ) : Rp. 70.000

Semen Padang ( 50 kg ) : Rp. 65.000

MU – 100 Plester Premium ( 40 kg ) : Rp. 65.000

MU – 200 Acian Plester & Beton ( 5 kg ) : Rp. 25.000

MU – 301 Pasangan Bata + Plester ( 10 kg ) : Rp. 25.000

MU – 450 Perekat Keramik Lantai ( 5 kg ) : Rp. 35.000

MU – Finish Coat Repair ( 25 kg ) : Rp. 335.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

HEBEL

Blok Reguler Tebal 10 mm (per m3) : Rp 610.000

Blok Jumbo (per m3) : Rp 580.000

Anak Tangga (per m3) : Rp 2.300.000

Panel (per m3) : Rp 320.000

BESI BETON

Diameter 6mm/batang  : Rp 23.500

Diameter 8mm / batang : Rp 35.000 (TYS ), Rp. 38.000 ( HJ ), Rp. 25.500 ( SP )

Diameter 10mm/batang :  Rp. 53.000 ( TYS ), Rp. 52.000 ( HJ ), Rp. 48.000 ( SP )

Diameter 12mm /batang :  Rp. 80.000 ( HJ ), Rp. 77.000 ( TYS )

Diameter 16mm (12m) :  Rp 145.000

Besi Hollow ( 20 x 40 ) : Rp. 18.000

Besi Hollow ( 40 x 40 ) : Rp. 24.000

Seng Gelombang ( 182 x 91 x 0.2 ) : Rp. 36.000

Plat Alumunium ( 2 x 1 x 0.2 tebal ) : Rp. 35.000

Plat alumunium / meter : Rp. 20.000

PAKU KAYU

Paku kayu uk. 2 cm / kg : Rp. 18.000

Paku Kayu uk. 2.5 cm / kg : Rp. 17.000

Paku Kayu uk. 3 cm / kg : Rp. 16.000

Paku Kayu uk. 4 cm / kg : Rp. 15.000

Paku Kayu uk. 5 cm / kg : Rp. 14.000

Paku Kayu uk. 7 cm / kg : Rp. 14.000

Paku Kayu uk. 10 cm / kg : Rp. 14.000

TRIPLEK

Tebal 3mm  : Rp 40.000

Tebal 4mm  : Rp 50.000

Tebal 6mm : Rp 65.000

Tebal 9mm : Rp 100.000

Tebal 12mm : Rp 135.000

Tebal 15mm : Rp 175.000

Tebal 18mm : Rp 195.000

GRC BOARD : Rp. 50.000

PAKU BETON PUTIH

Ukuran 2.5 cm / kg : Rp. 34.000

Ukuran 3 cm / kg : Rp. 34.000

Ukuran 4 cm / kg : Rp. 34.000

Ukuran 5 cm / kg : Rp. 34.000

Ukuran 6 cm / kg : Rp. 32.000

Ukuran 7 cm / kg : Rp. 32.000

Ukuran 10 cm / kg : Rp. 32.000

Ukuran 12.5 cm / kg : Rp. 32.000

PAKU BETON HITAM

Ukuran 3 cm / kg : Rp. 17.500

Ukuran 5 cm / kg : Rp. 16.000

Ukuran 7 cm / kg : Rp. 14.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

KACA

A. Kaca Bening

Tebal 3 mm  : Rp 80.000

Tebal 5 mm  : Rp 87.500

Tebal 8 mm  : Rp 140.000

Tebal 10 mm : Rp 200.000

B. Kaca Rayben

Tebal 3 mm : Rp 65.000

Tebal 5 mm  : Rp 62.500

Tebal 6 mm  : Rp 125.000

Tebal 8 mm : Rp 220.000

C. Kaca Tempered

Kaca Clear tempered 5 mm ( m2 ) : Rp. 200.000

Kaca Clear tempered 6 mm ( m2 ) : Rp. 250.500

Kaca Clear tempered 8 mm ( m2 ) : Rp. 375.000

Kaca Clear tempered 10 mm ( m2 ) : Rp. 400.000

Kaca Clear tempered 12 mm ( m2 ) : Rp. 450.000

Kaca Clear tempered 15 mm ( m2 ) : Rp. 1.950.000

Kaca Clear tempered 19 mm ( m2 ) : rp. 2.450.000

PAPAN FIBER SEMEN / TRIPLEK

A. GRC

GRC / Versaboard 4.0 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) /lembar : Rp. 53.500

GRC / Versaboard 6.0 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 )/lembar : Rp. 93.500

GRC / Versaboard 9.0 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) /lembar : rp. 129.000

B. TRIPLEK

Tebal 3 mm / lembar : Rp. 42.000

Tebal 4 mm / lembar : Rp. 53.000

Tebal 6 mm / lembar : Rp. 95.000

Tebal 9 mm / lembar : Rp. 110.000

Tebal 12 mm / lembar : Rp. 150.000

Tebal 15 mm / lembar : Rp. 190.000

Tebal 18 mm / lembar : Rp. 235.000

C. GYPSUM

Jayaboard 9 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) / lembar : Rp. 57.000

Elephant 9 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) / lembar : Rp. 56.000

Knauf 9 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) / lembar : Rp. 53.500

Star 9 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) / lembar : Rp. 53.000

Aplus 9 mm ( 1.20 x 2.40 ) / lembar : Rp. 52.500

KAYU

A. Reng

Meranti (2×3) per batang  : Rp 15.000

Meranti (3×4) per batang  : Rp 17.500

Borneo (2×3) per batang : Rp 20.500

Borneo (3×4) per batang : Rp 22.000

Kamper (2×3) per batang : Rp 17.000

Kamper (3×4) per batang : Rp 20.500

B. Kaso

Meranti (4×6) per batang Rp 32.500

Meranti (5×7) per batang Rp 39.000

Borneo (4×6) per batang Rp 28.000

Borneo (5×7) per batang Rp 43.000

Kamper (4×6) per batang Rp 50.000

Kamper (5×7) per batang Rp 70.000

C. Galar

Meranti (5×10) per batang Rp 60.000

Borneo (5×10) per batang Rp 60.000

Kamper (5×10) per batang Rp 95.000

D. Balok

Meranti (6×12) per batang Rp 80.000

Meranti (8×12) per batang Rp 125.000

Borneo (6×12) per batang Rp 80.000

Borneo (8×12) per batang Rp 100.000

Kamper (6×12) per batang Rp 185.000

Kamper (8×12) per batang Rp 210.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

CAT TEMBOK

A. Interior

Dulux Pearl Glo (2,5 lt ) Rp. 180.000

Dulux Pentalite Standard Colour ( 2,5 lt ) Rp. 137.000

Dulux Weather Shield Exterior/Brilliant white ( 2,5 lt ) Rp. 215.000

Dulux (2,5 lt) Rp 117.500

Dulux (20 lt) Rp 850.000

Mowilex ( 1 lt ) Rp. 60.000

Mowilex (2,5 lt) Rp 130.000

Mowilex (20 lt) Rp. 915.000

Catylac (5 kg) Rp 93.500

Catylac (25 kg) Rp 355.000

Avitex ( 5 kg ) Rp. 73.500

Vinilex (5 kg) Rp 75.000

Vinilex (25 kg) Rp 445.000

Metrolite ( 1 kg ) Rp. 24.000

Metrolite (3 lt) Rp 78.000

Metrolite ( 16 ltr / pail) Rp 380.000

Matex ( 4kg) Rp 60.000

Matex (25 kg) Rp 295.000

Profitex (5 kg) Rp 26.500

Profitex (25 kg) Rp 120.000

B. Eksterior

Dulux (2,5 lt) Rp 187.500

Dulux (20 lt) Rp 1.285.000

Mowilex (2,5 lt) Rp 160.000

Mowilex (20 lt) Rp 1.250.000

CAT KAYU

Dulux 1 kg Rp 35.000

Mowilex 1 kg Rp 60.000

Catylac 1 kg Rp 35.000

Glotex 1 kg Rp 35.000

Emco 1 kg Rp 35.000

Globe Supergloss Rp 43.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

GENTENG KERAMIK

Kanmuri Milenio (Double Interlocking)

- Warna Natural Rp 5.700

- Warna Standard Rp 6.500

- Warna Spesial Rp 8.500

- Warna Exclusive Rp 11.500

Kanmuri Espancia

- Warna Natural Rp 5.500

- Warna Standard Rp 8.700

- Warna Spesial Rp 9.700

- Warna Exclusive Rp 10.500

M Class (Double Interlocking)

- Warna Natural Rp 5.500

- Warna Standard Rp 6.000

- Warna Spesial Rp 8.000

- Warna Premium Rp 11.000

- Genteng Knok Natural Rp 15.000

GENTENG BETON

- Morando Rp. 3.750,-/pc (20pcs/m2)

- Berglazur Rp 3.500,-

- Natural Rp 2.000

- Moner Rp 5.350,- (9pcs/m2)

IDEAL

- Berglazur Rp 2.650/pc

- Natural Rp 1.750/pc

GENTENG METAL

Sun Roof Venus

Ukuran 38,5 x 80 cm S/S Rp 23.000

Ukuran 38,5 x 80 cm D/S Rp 27.500

Sun Roof Pluto

Ukuran 38,5 x 80 cm S/S Rp 17.500

Ukuran 38,5 x 80 cm D/S Rp 20.000

ASBES

Jabesmen

150×105 (per lembar gelombang kecil) Rp 40.000

180×105 (per lembar gelombang kecil) Rp 45.000

210×105 (per lembar gelombang kecil) Rp 50.000

240×105 (per lembar gelombang kecil) Rp 55.500

270×105 (per lembar gelombang kecil) Rp 65.000

300×105 (per lembar gelombang kecil) Rp 75.000

SENG GELOMBANG

Seng Plat

Tebal 0.20 Rp 27.500

Tebal 0.25 Rp 37.500

Tebal 0.30 Rp 42.500

Seng Gelombang

Tebal 0.20 Rp 49.000

Tebal 0.30 Rp 59.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

PIPA PVC

- Wavin 0,5 inci Rp 17.500

0,75 inci Rp 22.000

1 inci Rp 30.000

2 inci Rp 65.000

3 inci Rp 120.000

4 inci Rp 200.000

- Rucika 0,5 inci Rp 25.000

1 inci Rp 45.000

2 inci Rp 52.500

4 inci Rp 168.000

8 inci Rp 635.000

- Lucky

0,5 inci Rp 8.500

0,75 inci Rp 13.000

1 inci Rp 15.000

2 inci Rp 33.000

3 inci Rp 64.000

4 inci Rp 103.000

- Unggul

0,5 inci Rp 8.500

0,75 inci Rp 11.000

1 inci Rp 15.000

2 inci Rp 27.000

3 inci Rp 40.000

4 inci Rp 55.000

- Maspion

0,5 inci Rp 13.500

0,75 inci Rp 16.500

1 inci Rp 21.500

2 inci Rp 51.500

3 inci Rp 100.000

4 inci Rp 150.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

KERAMIK LANTAI ARWANA

20×20

Tua Rp 35.000

Muda Rp 34.000

30×30

Putih Rp 30.000

Marble Rp 32.000

Fancy Rp 37.500

40×40

Putih Rp 30.000

Marble Rp 33.000

LANTAI KAYU

Kronotec (per meter) Rp 225.000

HDM Glossy (per boks) Rp 550.000

KERAMIK DINDING

20×20

Roman

(putih) Rp 50.000

(motif) Rp 55.000

Masterina

(putih) Rp 40.000

(motif) Rp 50.000

KIA

(putih) Rp 37.500

(motif) Rp 42.500

20×25

Mulia

(warna muda) Rp 45.000

(warna tua) Rp 50.000

IKAD

(warna muda) Rp 42.500

(warna tua) Rp 52.500

Roman

25×33 Roman Rp 50.000

33×50 Roman Rp 80.000

30×30 Hercules (putih) Rp 42.500

Acura (putih) Rp 35.000

KIG (warna) Rp 40.000

KIA (warna) Rp 40.000

60 x 60 Platinum Rp 125.000

30 x 60 Platinum Rp 75.000

58 x 58 Platinum Rp 110.000

Selain info bahan bangunan 2013, silahkat lihat homepage kami untuk tips dan informasi renovasi rumah

SANITARI

KLOSET DUDUK

Sanremo Classis CCST Rp 1.325.000

Lexington Rp 3.500.000

Granada 3000 CCST Rp 1.275.000

Granada II Space CCST Rp 1.500.000

Projecta Rp 1.000.000

KLOSET JONGKOK

Rapi EX Squat Rp 250.000

WASTAFEL/LAVATORY

San Remo 55 Lava & Pedestal Rp 650.000

Studio 3000 Lava & Pedestal Rp 475.000

Studio 50 Lavatory Rp 250.000

Studio 45 Lavatory Rp 200.000

GRANIT

Impero 40×40 Rp 125.000

Granito 40×40 Rp 210.000

Inesa 40×40 Rp 175.000

Niro 40×40 Rp 160.000

Essenza 40×40 Rp 175.000

KUNCI

Firo Rp 275.000

Napoli Rp 30.000

Romaco Rp 65.000

Ferza Rp 33.500

Top Rp 30.000

Paloma Rp 420.000

Yale Rp 125.000

Beluci Rp 130.000

Note : Kami tidak menjual bahan bangunan diatas, Daftar Harga Bangunan yang kami masukkan dalam blog ini  sifatnya sebagai Info dan acuan untuk membantu membuat anggaran atau estimasi dalam membangun dan merenovasi rumah. Koreksi mengenai perubahan /perbedaan harga dari teman-teman akan sangat kami hargai.......

LIST BAHAN BANGUNAN

Emotional Spiritual Quotient (ESQ) adalah kombinasi dari EQ dan SQ, merger antara kecerdasan emosional dan spiritual control. Manfaat yang dapat dicapai adalah keseimbangan antara hubungan horizontal (manusia ke manusia) dan Vertikal (manusia dan Tuhan) .... Selanjutnya

EMOTIONAL SPIRITUAL QUOTIENT (ESQ)

Di dalam pasaran besi beton dikenal adanya istilah full, gemuk, dan kurus atau banci. Besi kok gemuk dan banci, ada-ada saja ya. Besi full adalah besi beton yang telah memiliki dimensi yang sama dengan yang disebutkan. Misalkan saja besi 10 full, maka diameternya jika diukur adalah 10 mm pas dengan panjang standart  12 meter. Sedangkan besi gemuk adalah besi yang diameternya lebih besar dari yang disebutkan tapi panjangnya belum tentu standart 12 meter. Misalkan saja besi 10 gemuk, akan diperoleh ukuran diameter lebih dari 10 mm, misalkan 11,2 mm dengan panjang dapat  12 meter ataupun 11,6 meter.

Kemudian besi kurus atau banci, misalakan disebut besi 10 kurus, maka ukuran diameternya akan di kisaran 8 mm saja dengan panjang dapat dibawah 12 meter ataupun tepat. Semoga ini dapat berguna buat yang menginginkannnya.

BERANDA PROFIL MY GALLERY FORUM KONSULTASI SURVEY DAFTAR TULISAN RSS SUBSCRIBE: RSS FEED DESKONSTRUKSI PERSONAL BLOG ARTIKEL & BERITA SEPUTAR DUNIA DESAIN BANGUNAN, ARSITEKTUR, DAN KONSTRUKSI TIPS MEMILIH B

London, Saco-Indonesia – Akhir-akhir ini, pengguna kendaraan bermotor dihadapkan dengan bayang-bayang kenaikan harga BBM. Tidak perlu khawatir, karena irit tidaknya konsumsi bahan bakar bukan semata-mata karena faktor minyak murah, tetapi juga perlakuan terhadap kendaraan itu sendiri.

KompasOtomotif merangkum delapan nasihat yang dilansir about.com untuk pengguna sepeda motor agar konsumsi bahan bakar irit, berangkat dari sudut pandang perilaku. Berikut tipsnya:

1. Memanaskan mesin sudah jadi ritual. Tapi kebanyakan sepeda motor berteknologi injeksi sudah bisa dinaiki instan setelah dinyalakan. Jika Anda yakin performa sepeda motor tidak turun, langsung tancap lebih baik dan lebih cepat memanaskan mesin ketimbang membuang bahan bakar saat dipanaskan dalam kondisi diam.

2. Salah satu yang paling efektif, memelihara tekanan angin. Cari tekanan yang direkomendasikan yang biasa tertempel pada sepeda motor atau buku petunjuk kendaraan. Tekanan ban yang pas tak hanya menghemat bahan bakar, tetapi juga meningkatkan pengendalian.

3. Performa sepeda motor akan baik jika mesin terawat. Pahami bahwa saringan udara bersih, busi fresh, saringan bensin bebas kotoran, dan setelan bagus, sangat besar peranannya mengirit bahan bakar. Lakukan ini.

4. Fokus memelihara kecepatan konstan. Tarik tuas gas perlahan dan jangan menghentak, apalagi menggeber- geber gas. Sok-sokan ngebut padahal di depan bakal macet, hanya akan membuang bahan bakar sia- sia.

5. Berpikirlah begini: Batas kecepatan di jalan diciptakan Polisi bukan hanya untuk menertibkan, melainkan juga menghemat bahan bakar. Tarik gas memang enak, dan menimbulkan perasaan meledak-ledak karena adrenalin meningkat deras, tapi bahan bakar dijamin jauh lebih boros.

6. Bobot pasti mempengaruhi konsumsi bahan bakar. Kurangi komponen tambahan yang tidak perlu. Misalnya, boks di kanan-kiri-belakang, jika tidak ada isinya, kenapa harus dipasang untuk dipakai berangkat kerja? Pasanglah hanya kalau butuh, misalnya touring.

7. Aerodinamis itu penting. Sebisa mungkin buang peralatan yang membuat angin "menabrak" keras sepeda motor, misalnya tameng angin (windshield) yang tegak lurus. Usahakan memasang tameng angin yang aerodinamis, bila perlu posisinya tak terlalu tinggi.

8. Berkendaralah di jalan yang benar (aspal). Banyak sepeda motor kurang sabar dengan mengambil jalan tanah di sebelahnya, atau bahkan naik trotoar rusak hanya untuk menyalip dua atau tiga kendaraan lain dan mengorbankan pejalan kaki. Sia-sia, dan percayalah bahwa jalan yang tak mulus menambah konsumsi bahan bakar.

Selamat berkendara hemat, nyaman, dan aman.

Sumber: about.com/Kompas Otomotif
Editor : Maulana Lee
New Jelajahi Kompas.com Bersama Teman-Teman Facebook Anda Learn more Home | Tips N Trik Sepeda Motor ingin irit? Lakukan Ini!

Kami PT PUTRA MAS DUA SAUDARA, adalah sebuah perusahaan yang bergerak di bidang specialis jasa pengiriman mobil ke seluruh Indonesia Dari manapun , dan kemanapun asal dan tujuan mobil anda, kami senantiasa siap untuk membantu anda. Kami mempunyai cara tersendiri dalam melayani kebutuhan anda dalam bidang pengiriman mobil kesayangan anda. Kami senantiasa memberikan solusi yang terbaik buat anda, sehingga dapat memenuhi kebutuhan anda dengan mudah dan nyaman.

Dengan kepercayaan Putra Mas Dua Saudara yang kemudian di singkat PMDS berkomitmen untuk terus meningkatkan segala sumberdaya manusia yang dimiliki. Disertai dengan sistem dan iklim kerja yang kondusif. Dimana terjaga hubungan yang saling menunjang satu dengan yang lain dalam meningkatkan semangat, kreativitas, loyalitas dan kepedulian antar pekerja. Kesemuanya di persembahkan guna memberikan rasa aman dan kenyamanan terhadap pelayanan yang di berikan.

Hubungan yang tidak kalah penting yang menjadi komitmen PMDS adalah terjaganya iklim kondusif terhadap Mitra Kerja. Dimana sikap saling menunjang ini demi kelancaran kiriman yang telah di percayakan. Karena menyadari persaingan yang semakin ketat PMDS tidak henti-hentinya berbenah, memperbaiki dan belajar dari segala hal yang berkaitan dengan jasa pengiriman. Dengan tidak mengabaikan rasa tanggung jawab dan Mengutamakan kepuasan pelanggan.

PENGIRIMAN MOBIL ANTAR PULAU

BALTIMORE — In the afternoons, the streets of Locust Point are clean and nearly silent. In front of the rowhouses, potted plants rest next to steps of brick or concrete. There is a shopping center nearby with restaurants, and a grocery store filled with fresh foods.

And the National Guard and the police are largely absent. So, too, residents say, are worries about what happened a few miles away on April 27 when, in a space of hours, parts of this city became riot zones.

“They’re not our reality,” Ashley Fowler, 30, said on Monday at the restaurant where she works. “They’re not what we’re living right now. We live in, not to be racist, white America.”

As Baltimore considers its way forward after the violent unrest brought by the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who died of injuries he suffered while in police custody, residents in its predominantly white neighborhoods acknowledge that they are sometimes struggling to understand what beyond Mr. Gray’s death spurred the turmoil here. For many, the poverty and troubled schools of gritty West Baltimore are distant troubles, glimpsed only when they pass through the area on their way somewhere else.

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Officers blocked traffic at Pennsylvania and West North Avenues after reports that a gun was discharged in the area. Credit Drew Angerer for The New York Times

And so neighborhoods of Baltimore are facing altogether different reckonings after Mr. Gray’s death. In mostly black communities like Sandtown-Winchester, where some of the most destructive rioting played out last week, residents are hoping businesses will reopen and that the police will change their strategies. But in mostly white areas like Canton and Locust Point, some residents wonder what role, if any, they should play in reimagining stretches of Baltimore where they do not live.

“Most of the people are kind of at a loss as to what they’re supposed to do,” said Dr. Richard Lamb, a dentist who has practiced in the same Locust Point office for nearly 39 years. “I listen to the news reports. I listen to the clergymen. I listen to the facts of the rampant unemployment and the lack of opportunities in the area. Listen, I pay my taxes. Exactly what can I do?”

And in Canton, where the restaurants have clever names like Nacho Mama’s and Holy Crepe Bakery and Café, Sara Bahr said solutions seemed out of reach for a proudly liberal city.

“I can only imagine how frustrated they must be,” said Ms. Bahr, 36, a nurse who was out with her 3-year-old daughter, Sally. “I just wish I knew how to solve poverty. I don’t know what to do to make it better.”

The day of unrest and the overwhelmingly peaceful demonstrations that followed led to hundreds of arrests, often for violations of the curfew imposed on the city for five consecutive nights while National Guard soldiers patrolled the streets. Although there were isolated instances of trouble in Canton, the neighborhood association said on its website, many parts of southeast Baltimore were physically untouched by the tumult.

Tensions in the city bubbled anew on Monday after reports that the police had wounded a black man in Northwest Baltimore. The authorities denied those reports and sent officers to talk with the crowds that gathered while other officers clutching shields blocked traffic at Pennsylvania and West North Avenues.

Lt. Col. Melvin Russell, a community police officer, said officers had stopped a man suspected of carrying a handgun and that “one of those rounds was spent.”

Colonel Russell said officers had not opened fire, “so we couldn’t have shot him.”

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Lambi Vasilakopoulos, right, who runs a casual restaurant in Canton, said he was incensed by last week's looting and predicted tensions would worsen. Credit Drew Angerer for The New York Times

The colonel said the man had not been injured but was taken to a hospital as a precaution. Nearby, many people stood in disbelief, despite the efforts by the authorities to quash reports they described as “unfounded.”

Monday’s episode was a brief moment in a larger drama that has yielded anger and confusion. Although many people said they were familiar with accounts of the police harassing or intimidating residents, many in Canton and Locust Point said they had never experienced it themselves. When they watched the unrest, which many protesters said was fueled by feelings that they lived only on Baltimore’s margins, even those like Ms. Bahr who were pained by what they saw said they could scarcely comprehend the emotions associated with it.

But others, like Lambi Vasilakopoulos, who runs a casual restaurant in Canton, said they were incensed by what unfolded last week.

“What happened wasn’t called for. Protests are one thing; looting is another thing,” he said, adding, “We’re very frustrated because we’re the ones who are going to pay for this.”

There were pockets of optimism, though, that Baltimore would enter a period of reconciliation.

“I’m just hoping for peace,” Natalie Boies, 53, said in front of the Locust Point home where she has lived for 50 years. “Learn to love each other; be patient with each other; find justice; and care.”

A skeptical Mr. Vasilakopoulos predicted tensions would worsen.

“It cannot be fixed,” he said. “It’s going to get worse. Why? Because people don’t obey the laws. They don’t want to obey them.”

But there were few fears that the violence that plagued West Baltimore last week would play out on these relaxed streets. The authorities, Ms. Fowler said, would make sure of that.

“They kept us safe here,” she said. “I didn’t feel uncomfortable when I was in my house three blocks away from here. I knew I was going to be O.K. because I knew they weren’t going to let anyone come and loot our properties or our businesses or burn our cars.”

Baltimore Residents Away From Turmoil Consider Their Role

Mr. Miller, of the firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges, represented companies including Lehman Brothers, General Motors and American Airlines, and mentored many of the top Chapter 11 practitioners today.

Harvey R. Miller, Renowned Bankruptcy Lawyer, Dies at 82

BEIJING (AP) — The head of Taiwan's Nationalists reaffirmed the party's support for eventual unification with the mainland when he met Monday with Chinese President Xi Jinping as part of continuing rapprochement between the former bitter enemies.

Nationalist Party Chairman Eric Chu, a likely presidential candidate next year, also affirmed Taiwan's desire to join the proposed Chinese-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank during the meeting in Beijing. China claims Taiwan as its own territory and doesn't want the island to join using a name that might imply it is an independent country.

Chu's comments during his meeting with Xi were carried live on Hong Kong-based broadcaster Phoenix Television.

The Nationalists were driven to Taiwan by Mao Zedong's Communists during the Chinese civil war in 1949, leading to decades of hostility between the sides. Chu, who took over as party leader in January, is the third Nationalist chairman to visit the mainland and the first since 2009.

Relations between the communist-ruled mainland and the self-governing democratic island of Taiwan began to warm in the 1990s, partly out of their common opposition to Taiwan's formal independence from China, a position advocated by the island's Democratic Progressive Party.

Despite increasingly close economic ties, the prospect of political unification has grown increasingly unpopular on Taiwan, especially with younger voters. Opposition to the Nationalists' pro-China policies was seen as a driver behind heavy local electoral defeats for the party last year that led to Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou resigning as party chairman.

Taiwan party leader affirms eventual reunion with China

Mr. Pfaff was an international affairs columnist and author who found Washington’s intervention in world affairs often misguided.

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A lapsed seminarian, Mr. Chambers succeeded Saul Alinsky as leader of the social justice umbrella group Industrial Areas Foundation.

Edward Chambers, Early Leader in Community Organizing, Dies at 85

Mr. Goldberg was a serial Silicon Valley entrepreneur and venture capitalist who was married to Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer of Facebook.

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Ms. Rendell was a prolific writer of intricately plotted mystery novels that combined psychological insight, social conscience and teeth-chattering terror.

Ruth Rendell, Novelist Who Thrilled and Educated, Dies at 85

Judge Patterson helped to protect the rights of Attica inmates after the prison riot in 1971 and later served on the Federal District Court in Manhattan.

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Pronovost, who played for the Red Wings, was not a prolific scorer, but he was a consummate team player with bruising checks and fearless bursts up the ice that could puncture a defense.

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Hockey is not exactly known as a city game, but played on roller skates, it once held sway as the sport of choice in many New York neighborhoods.

“City kids had no rinks, no ice, but they would do anything to play hockey,” said Edward Moffett, former director of the Long Island City Y.M.C.A. Roller Hockey League, in Queens, whose games were played in city playgrounds going back to the 1940s.

From the 1960s through the 1980s, the league had more than 60 teams, he said. Players included the Mullen brothers of Hell’s Kitchen and Dan Dorion of Astoria, Queens, who would later play on ice for the National Hockey League.

One street legend from the heyday of New York roller hockey was Craig Allen, who lived in the Woodside Houses projects and became one of the city’s hardest hitters and top scorers.

“Craig was a warrior, one of the best roller hockey players in the city in the ’70s,” said Dave Garmendia, 60, a retired New York police officer who grew up playing with Mr. Allen. “His teammates loved him and his opponents feared him.”

Young Craig took up hockey on the streets of Queens in the 1960s, playing pickup games between sewer covers, wearing steel-wheeled skates clamped onto school shoes and using a roll of electrical tape as the puck.

His skill and ferocity drew attention, Mr. Garmendia said, but so did his skin color. He was black, in a sport made up almost entirely by white players.

“Roller hockey was a white kid’s game, plain and simple, but Craig broke the color barrier,” Mr. Garmendia said. “We used to say Craig did more for race relations than the N.A.A.C.P.”

Mr. Allen went on to coach and referee roller hockey in New York before moving several years ago to South Carolina. But he continued to organize an annual alumni game at Dutch Kills Playground in Long Island City, the same site that held the local championship games.

The reunion this year was on Saturday, but Mr. Allen never made it. On April 26, just before boarding the bus to New York, he died of an asthma attack at age 61.

Word of his death spread rapidly among hundreds of his old hockey colleagues who resolved to continue with the event, now renamed the Craig Allen Memorial Roller Hockey Reunion.

The turnout on Saturday was the largest ever, with players pulling on their old equipment, choosing sides and taking once again to the rink of cracked blacktop with faded lines and circles. They wore no helmets, although one player wore a fedora.

Another, Vinnie Juliano, 77, of Long Island City, wore his hearing aids, along with his 50-year-old taped-up quads, or four-wheeled skates with a leather boot. Many players here never converted to in-line skates, and neither did Mr. Allen, whose photograph appeared on a poster hanging behind the players’ bench.

“I’m seeing people walking by wondering why all these rusty, grizzly old guys are here playing hockey,” one player, Tommy Dominguez, said. “We’re here for Craig, and let me tell you, these old guys still play hard.”

Everyone seemed to have a Craig Allen story, from his earliest teams at Public School 151 to the Bryant Rangers, the Woodside Wings, the Woodside Blues and more.

Mr. Allen, who became a yellow-cab driver, was always recruiting new talent. He gained the nickname Cabby for his habit of stopping at playgrounds all over the city to scout players.

Teams were organized around neighborhoods and churches, and often sponsored by local bars. Mr. Allen, for one, played for bars, including Garry Owen’s and on the Fiddler’s Green Jokers team in Inwood, Manhattan.

Play was tough and fights were frequent.

“We were basically street gangs on skates,” said Steve Rogg, 56, a mail clerk who grew up in Jackson Heights, Queens, and who on Saturday wore his Riedell Classic quads from 1972. “If another team caught up with you the night before a game, they tossed you a beating so you couldn’t play the next day.”

Mr. Garmendia said Mr. Allen’s skin color provoked many fights.

“When we’d go to some ignorant neighborhoods, a lot of players would use slurs,” Mr. Garmendia said, recalling a game in Ozone Park, Queens, where local fans parked motorcycles in a lineup next to the blacktop and taunted Mr. Allen. Mr. Garmendia said he checked a player into the motorcycles, “and the bikes went down like dominoes, which started a serious brawl.”

A group of fans at a game in Brooklyn once stuck a pole through the rink fence as Mr. Allen skated by and broke his jaw, Mr. Garmendia said, adding that carloads of reinforcements soon arrived to defend Mr. Allen.

And at another racially incited brawl, the police responded with six patrol cars and a helicopter.

Before play began on Saturday, the players gathered at center rink to honor Mr. Allen. Billy Barnwell, 59, of Woodside, recalled once how an all-white, all-star squad snubbed Mr. Allen by playing him third string. He scored seven goals in the first game and made first string immediately.

“He’d always hear racial stuff before the game, and I’d ask him, ‘How do you put up with that?’” Mr. Barnwell recalled. “Craig would say, ‘We’ll take care of it,’ and by the end of the game, he’d win guys over. They’d say, ‘This guy’s good.’”

Tribute for a Roller Hockey Warrior

Ms. von Furstenberg made her debut in the movies and on the Broadway stage in the early 1950s as a teenager and later reinvented herself as a television actress, writer and philanthropist.

Betsy von Furstenberg, Baroness and Versatile Actress, Dies at 83

Ms. Plisetskaya, renowned for her fluidity of movement, expressive acting and willful personality, danced on the Bolshoi stage well into her 60s, but her life was shadowed by Stalinism.

Maya Plisetskaya, Ballerina Who Embodied Bolshoi, Dies at 89

UNITED NATIONS — Wearing pinstripes and a pince-nez, Staffan de Mistura, the United Nations envoy for Syria, arrived at the Security Council one Tuesday afternoon in February and announced that President Bashar al-Assad had agreed to halt airstrikes over Aleppo. Would the rebels, Mr. de Mistura suggested, agree to halt their shelling?

What he did not announce, but everyone knew by then, was that the Assad government had begun a military offensive to encircle opposition-held enclaves in Aleppo and that fierce fighting was underway. It would take only a few days for rebel leaders, having pushed back Syrian government forces, to outright reject Mr. de Mistura’s proposed freeze in the fighting, dooming the latest diplomatic overture on Syria.

Diplomacy is often about appearing to be doing something until the time is ripe for a deal to be done.

 

 

Now, with Mr. Assad’s forces having suffered a string of losses on the battlefield and the United States reaching at least a partial rapprochement with Mr. Assad’s main backer, Iran, Mr. de Mistura is changing course. Starting Monday, he is set to hold a series of closed talks in Geneva with the warring sides and their main supporters. Iran will be among them.

In an interview at United Nations headquarters last week, Mr. de Mistura hinted that the changing circumstances, both military and diplomatic, may have prompted various backers of the war to question how much longer the bloodshed could go on.

“Will that have an impact in accelerating the willingness for a political solution? We need to test it,” he said. “The Geneva consultations may be a good umbrella for testing that. It’s an occasion for asking everyone, including the government, if there is any new way that they are looking at a political solution, as they too claim they want.”

He said he would have a better assessment at the end of June, when he expects to wrap up his consultations. That coincides with the deadline for a final agreement in the Iran nuclear talks.

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Whether a nuclear deal with Iran will pave the way for a new opening on peace talks in Syria remains to be seen. Increasingly, though, world leaders are explicitly linking the two, with the European Union’s top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, suggesting last week that a nuclear agreement could spur Tehran to play “a major but positive role in Syria.”

It could hardly come soon enough. Now in its fifth year, the Syrian war has claimed 220,000 lives, prompted an exodus of more than three million refugees and unleashed jihadist groups across the region. “This conflict is producing a question mark in many — where is it leading and whether this can be sustained,” Mr. de Mistura said.

Part Italian, part Swedish, Mr. de Mistura has worked with the United Nations for more than 40 years, but he is more widely known for his dapper style than for any diplomatic coups. Syria is by far the toughest assignment of his career — indeed, two of the organization’s most seasoned diplomats, Lakhdar Brahimi and Kofi Annan, tried to do the job and gave up — and critics have wondered aloud whether Mr. de Mistura is up to the task.

He served as a United Nations envoy in Afghanistan and Iraq, and before that in Lebanon, where a former minister recalled, with some scorn, that he spent many hours sunbathing at a private club in the hills above Beirut. Those who know him say he has a taste for fine suits and can sometimes speak too soon and too much, just as they point to his diplomatic missteps and hyperbole.

They cite, for instance, a news conference in October, when he raised the specter of Srebrenica, where thousands of Muslims were massacred in 1995 during the Balkans war, in warning that the Syrian border town of Kobani could fall to the Islamic State. In February, he was photographed at a party in Damascus, the Syrian capital, celebrating the anniversary of the Iranian revolution just as Syrian forces, aided by Iran, were pummeling rebel-held suburbs of Damascus; critics seized on that as evidence of his coziness with the government.

Mouin Rabbani, who served briefly as the head of Mr. de Mistura’s political affairs unit and has since emerged as one of his most outspoken critics, said Mr. de Mistura did not have the background necessary for the job. “This isn’t someone well known for his political vision or political imagination, and his closest confidants lack the requisite knowledge and experience,” Mr. Rabbani said.

As a deputy foreign minister in the Italian government, Mr. de Mistura was tasked in 2012 with freeing two Italian marines detained in India for shooting at Indian fishermen. He made 19 trips to India, to little effect. One marine was allowed to return to Italy for medical reasons; the other remains in India.

He said he initially turned down the Syria job when the United Nations secretary general approached him last August, only to change his mind the next day, after a sleepless, guilt-ridden night.

Mr. de Mistura compared his role in Syria to that of a doctor faced with a terminally ill patient. His goal in brokering a freeze in the fighting, he said, was to alleviate suffering. He settled on Aleppo as the location for its “fame,” he said, a decision that some questioned, considering that Aleppo was far trickier than the many other lesser-known towns where activists had negotiated temporary local cease-fires.

“Everybody, at least in Europe, are very familiar with the value of Aleppo,” Mr. de Mistura said. “So I was using that as an icebreaker.”

The cease-fire negotiations, to which he had devoted six months, fell apart quickly because of the government’s military offensive in Aleppo the very day of his announcement at the Security Council. Privately, United Nations diplomats said Mr. de Mistura had been manipulated. To this, Mr. de Mistura said only that he was “disappointed and concerned.”

Tarek Fares, a former rebel fighter, said after a recent visit to Aleppo that no Syrian would admit publicly to supporting Mr. de Mistura’s cease-fire proposal. “If anyone said they went to a de Mistura meeting in Gaziantep, they would be arrested,” is how he put it, referring to the Turkish city where negotiations between the two sides were held.

Secretary General Ban Ki-moon remains staunchly behind Mr. de Mistura’s efforts. His defenders point out that he is at the center of one of the world’s toughest diplomatic problems, charged with mediating a conflict in which two of the world’s most powerful nations — Russia, which supports Mr. Assad, and the United States, which has called for his ouster — remain deadlocked.

R. Nicholas Burns, a former State Department official who now teaches at Harvard, credited Mr. de Mistura for trying to negotiate a cease-fire even when the chances of success were exceedingly small — and the chances of a political deal even smaller. For his efforts to work, Professor Burns argued, the world powers will first have to come to an agreement of their own.

“He needs the help of outside powers,” he said. “It starts with backers of Assad. That’s Russia and Iran. De Mistura is there, waiting.”

With Iran Talks, a Tangled Path to Ending Syria’s War

THE WRITERS ASHLEY AND JAQUAVIS COLEMAN know the value of a good curtain-raiser. The couple have co-authored dozens of novels, and they like to start them with a bang: a headlong action sequence, a blast of violence or sex that rocks readers back on their heels. But the Colemans concede they would be hard-pressed to dream up anything more gripping than their own real-life opening scene.

In the summer of 2001, JaQuavis Coleman was a 16-year-old foster child in Flint, Mich., the former auto-manufacturing mecca that had devolved, in the wake of General Motors’ plant closures, into one of the country’s most dangerous cities, with a decimated economy and a violent crime rate more than three times the national average. When JaQuavis was 8, social services had removed him from his mother’s home. He spent years bouncing between foster families. At 16, JaQuavis was also a businessman: a crack dealer with a network of street-corner peddlers in his employ.

One day that summer, JaQuavis met a fellow dealer in a parking lot on Flint’s west side. He was there to make a bulk sale of a quarter-brick, or “nine-piece” — a nine-ounce parcel of cocaine, with a street value of about $11,000. In the middle of the transaction, JaQuavis heard the telltale chirp of a walkie-talkie. His customer, he now realized, was an undercover policeman. JaQuavis jumped into his car and spun out onto the road, with two unmarked police cars in pursuit. He didn’t want to get into a high-speed chase, so he whipped his car into a church parking lot and made a run for it, darting into an alleyway behind a row of small houses, where he tossed the quarter-brick into some bushes. When JaQuavis reached the small residential street on the other side of the houses, he was greeted by the police, who handcuffed him and went to search behind the houses where, they told him, they were certain he had ditched the drugs. JaQuavis had been dealing since he was 12, had amassed more than $100,000 and had never been arrested. Now, he thought: It’s over.

But when the police looked in the bushes, they couldn’t find any cocaine. They interrogated JaQuavis, who denied having ever possessed or sold drugs. They combed the backyard alley some more. After an hour of fruitless efforts, the police were forced to unlock the handcuffs and release their suspect.

JaQuavis was baffled by the turn of events until the next day, when he received a phone call. The previous afternoon, a 15-year-old girl had been sitting in her home on the west side of Flint when she heard sirens. She looked out of the window of her bedroom, and watched a young man throw a package in the bushes behind her house. She recognized him. He was a high school classmate — a handsome, charismatic boy whom she had admired from afar. The girl crept outside and grabbed the bundle, which she hid in her basement. “I have something that belongs to you,” Ashley Snell told JaQuavis Coleman when she reached him by phone. “You wanna come over here and pick it up?”

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Three of the nearly 50 works of urban fiction published by the Colemans over the last decade, often featuring drug deals, violence, sex and a brash kind of feminism.Credit Marko Metzinger

In the Colemans’ first novel, “Dirty Money” (2005), they told a version of this story. The outline was the same: the drug deal gone bad, the dope chucked in the bushes, the fateful phone call. To the extent that the authors took poetic license, it was to tone down the meet-cute improbability of the true-life events. In “Dirty Money,” the girl, Anari, and the crack dealer, Maurice, circle each other warily for a year or so before coupling up. But the facts of Ashley and JaQuavis’s romance outstripped pulp fiction. They fell in love more or less at first sight, moved into their own apartment while still in high school and were married in 2008. “We were together from the day we met,” Ashley says. “I don’t think we’ve spent more than a week apart in total over the past 14 years.”

That partnership turned out to be creative and entrepreneurial as well as romantic. Over the past decade, the Colemans have published nearly 50 books, sometimes as solo writers, sometimes under pseudonyms, but usually as collaborators with a byline that has become a trusted brand: “Ashley & JaQuavis.” They are marquee stars of urban fiction, or street lit, a genre whose inner-city settings and lurid mix of crime, sex and sensationalism have earned it comparisons to gangsta rap. The emergence of street lit is one of the big stories in recent American publishing, a juggernaut that has generated huge sales by catering to a readership — young, black and, for the most part, female — that historically has been ill-served by the book business. But the genre is also widely maligned. Street lit is subject to a kind of triple snobbery: scorned by literati who look down on genre fiction generally, ignored by a white publishing establishment that remains largely indifferent to black books and disparaged by African-American intellectuals for poor writing, coarse values and trafficking in racial stereotypes.

But if a certain kind of cultural prestige is shut off to the Colemans, they have reaped other rewards. They’ve built a large and loyal fan base, which gobbles up the new Ashley & JaQuavis titles that arrive every few months. Many of those books are sold at street-corner stands and other off-the-grid venues in African-American neighborhoods, a literary gray market that doesn’t register a blip on best-seller tallies. Yet the Colemans’ most popular series now regularly crack the trade fiction best-seller lists of The New York Times and Publishers Weekly. For years, the pair had no literary agent; they sold hundreds of thousands of books without banking a penny in royalties. Still, they have earned millions of dollars, almost exclusively from cash-for-manuscript deals negotiated directly with independent publishing houses. In short, though little known outside of the world of urban fiction, the Colemans are one of America’s most successful literary couples, a distinction they’ve achieved, they insist, because of their work’s gritty authenticity and their devotion to a primal literary virtue: the power of the ripping yarn.

“When you read our books, you’re gonna realize: ‘Ashley & JaQuavis are storytellers,’ ” says Ashley. “Our tales will get your heart pounding.”

THE COLEMANS’ HOME BASE — the cottage from which they operate their cottage industry — is a spacious four-bedroom house in a genteel suburb about 35 miles north of downtown Detroit. The house is plush, but when I visited this past winter, it was sparsely appointed. The couple had just recently moved in, and had only had time to fully furnish the bedroom of their 4-year-old son, Quaye.

In conversation, Ashley and JaQuavis exude both modesty and bravado: gratitude for their good fortune and bootstrappers’ pride in having made their own luck. They talk a lot about their time in the trenches, the years they spent as a drug dealer and “ride-or-die girl” tandem. In Flint they learned to “grind hard.” Writing, they say, is merely a more elevated kind of grind.

“Instead of hitting the block like we used to, we hit the laptops,” says Ashley. “I know what every word is worth. So while I’m writing, I’m like: ‘Okay, there’s a hundred dollars. There’s a thousand dollars. There’s five thousand dollars.’ ”

They maintain a rigorous regimen. They each try to write 5,000 words per day, five days a week. The writers stagger their shifts: JaQuavis goes to bed at 7 p.m. and wakes up early, around 3 or 4 in the morning, to work while his wife and child sleep. Ashley writes during the day, often in libraries or at Starbucks.

They divide the labor in other ways. Chapters are divvied up more or less equally, with tasks assigned according to individual strengths. (JaQuavis typically handles character development. Ashley loves writing murder scenes.) The results are stitched together, with no editorial interference from one author in the other’s text. The real work, they contend, is the brainstorming. The Colemans spend weeks mapping out their plot-driven books — long conversations that turn into elaborate diagrams on dry-erase boards. “JaQuavis and I are so close, it makes the process real easy,” says Ashley. “Sometimes when I’m thinking of something, a plot point, he’ll say it out loud, and I’m like: ‘Wait — did I say that?’ ”

Their collaboration developed by accident, and on the fly. Both were bookish teenagers. Ashley read lots of Judy Blume and John Grisham; JaQuavis liked Shakespeare, Richard Wright and “Atlas Shrugged.” (Their first official date was at a Borders bookstore, where Ashley bought “The Coldest Winter Ever,” the Sister Souljah novel often credited with kick-starting the contemporary street-lit movement.) In 2003, Ashley, then 17, was forced to terminate an ectopic pregnancy. She was bedridden for three weeks, and to provide distraction and boost her spirits, JaQuavis challenged his girlfriend to a writing contest. “She just wasn’t talking. She was laying in bed. I said, ‘You know what? I bet you I could write a better book than you.’ My wife is real competitive. So I said, ‘Yo, all right, $500 bet.’ And I saw her eyes spark, like, ‘What?! You can’t write no better book than me!’ So I wrote about three chapters. She wrote about three chapters. Two days later, we switched.”

The result, hammered out in a few days, would become “Dirty Money.” Two years later, when Ashley and JaQuavis were students at Ferris State University in Western Michigan, they sold the manuscript to Urban Books, a street-lit imprint founded by the best-selling author Carl Weber. At the time, JaQuavis was still making his living selling drugs. When Ashley got the phone call informing her that their book had been bought, she assumed they’d hit it big, and flushed more than $10,000 worth of cocaine down the toilet. Their advance was a mere $4,000.

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The roots of street lit, found in the midcentury detective novels of Chester Himes and the ‘60s and ‘70s “ghetto fiction” of Iceberg Slim and Donald Goines.Credit Marko Metzinger

Those advances would soon increase, eventually reaching five and six figures. The Colemans built their career, JaQuavis says, in a manner that made sense to him as a veteran dope peddler: by flooding the street with product. From the start, they were prolific, churning out books at a rate of four or five a year. Their novels made their way into stores; the now-defunct chain Waldenbooks, which had stores in urban areas typically bypassed by booksellers, was a major engine of the street-lit market. But Ashley and JaQuavis took advantage of distribution channels established by pioneering urban fiction authors such as Teri Woods and Vickie Stringer, and a network of street-corner tables, magazine stands, corner shops and bodegas. Like rappers who establish their bona fides with gray-market mixtapes, street-lit authors use this system to circumnavigate industry gatekeepers, bringing their work straight to the genre’s core readership. But urban fiction has other aficionados, in less likely places. “Our books are so popular in the prison system,” JaQuavis says. “We’re banned in certain penitentiaries. Inmates fight over the books — there are incidents, you know? I have loved ones in jail, and they’re like: ‘Yo, your books can’t come in here. It’s against the rules.’ ”

The appeal of the Colemans’ work is not hard to fathom. The books are formulaic and taut; they deliver the expected goods efficiently and exuberantly. The titles telegraph the contents: “Diary of a Street Diva,” “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang,” “Murderville.” The novels serve up a stream of explicit sex and violence in a slangy, tangy, profane voice. In Ashley & JaQuavis’s books people don’t get killed: they get “popped,” “laid out,” get their “cap twisted back.” The smut is constant, with emphasis on the earthy, sticky, olfactory particulars. Romance novel clichés — shuddering orgasms, heroic carnal feats, superlative sexual skill sets — are rendered in the Colemans’ punchy patois.

Subtlety, in other words, isn’t Ashley & JaQuavis’s forte. But their books do have a grainy specificity. In “The Cartel” (2008), the first novel in the Colemans’ best-selling saga of a Miami drug syndicate, they catch the sights and smells of a crack workshop in a housing project: the nostril-stinging scent of cocaine and baking soda bubbling on stovetops; the teams of women, stripped naked except for hospital masks so they can’t pilfer the merchandise, “cutting up the cooked coke on the round wood table.” The subject matter is dark, but the Colemans’ tone is not quite noir. Even in the grimmest scenes, the mood is high-spirited, with the writers palpably relishing the lewd and gory details: the bodies writhing in boudoirs and crumpling under volleys of bullets, the geysers of blood and other bodily fluids.

The luridness of street lit has made it a flashpoint, inciting controversy reminiscent of the hip-hop culture wars of the 1980s and ’90s. But the street-lit debate touches deeper historical roots, reviving decades-old arguments in black literary circles about the mandate to uplift the race and present wholesome images of African-Americans. In 1928, W. E. B. Du Bois slammed the “licentiousness” of “Home to Harlem,” Claude McKay’s rollicking novel of Harlem nightlife. McKay’s book, Du Bois wrote, “for the most part nauseates me, and after the dirtier parts of its filth I feel distinctly like taking a bath.” Similar sentiments have greeted 21st-century street lit. In a 2006 New York Times Op-Ed essay, the journalist and author Nick Chiles decried “the sexualization and degradation of black fiction.” African-American bookstores, Chiles complained, are “overrun with novels that . . . appeal exclusively to our most prurient natures — as if these nasty books were pairing off back in the stockrooms like little paperback rabbits and churning out even more graphic offspring that make Ralph Ellison books cringe into a dusty corner.”

Copulating paperbacks aside, it’s clear that the street-lit debate is about more than literature, touching on questions of paternalism versus populism, and on middle-class anxieties about the black underclass. “It’s part and parcel of black elites’ efforts to define not only a literary tradition, but a racial politics,” said Kinohi Nishikawa, an assistant professor of English and African-American Studies at Princeton University. “There has always been a sense that because African-Americans’ opportunities to represent themselves are so limited in the first place, any hint of criminality or salaciousness would necessarily be a knock on the entire racial politics. One of the pressing debates about African-American literature today is: If we can’t include writers like Ashley & JaQuavis, to what extent is the foundation of our thinking about black literature faulty? Is it just a literature for elites? Or can it be inclusive, bringing urban fiction under the purview of our umbrella term ‘African-American literature’?”

Defenders of street lit note that the genre has a pedigree: a tradition of black pulp fiction that stretches from Chester Himes, the midcentury author of hardboiled Harlem detective stories, to the 1960s and ’70s “ghetto fiction” of Iceberg Slim and Donald Goines, to the current wave of urban fiction authors. Others argue for street lit as a social good, noting that it attracts a large audience that might otherwise never read at all. Scholars like Nishikawa link street lit to recent studies showing increased reading among African-Americans. A 2014 Pew Research Center report found that a greater percentage of black Americans are book readers than whites or Latinos.

For their part, the Colemans place their work in the broader black literary tradition. “You have Maya Angelou, Alice Walker, James Baldwin — all of these traditional black writers, who wrote about the struggles of racism, injustice, inequality,” says Ashley. “We’re writing about the struggle as it happens now. It’s just a different struggle. I’m telling my story. I’m telling the struggle of a black girl from Flint, Michigan, who grew up on welfare.”

Photo
The Colemans in their new four-bedroom house in the northern suburbs of Detroit.Credit Courtesy of Ashley and JaQuavis Coleman

Perhaps there is a high-minded case to be made for street lit. But the virtues of Ashley & JaQuavis’s work are more basic. Their novels do lack literary polish. The writing is not graceful; there are passages of clunky exposition and sex scenes that induce guffaws and eye rolls. But the pleasure quotient is high. The books flaunt a garish brand of feminism, with women characters cast not just as vixens, but also as gangsters — cold-blooded killers, “murder mamas.” The stories are exceptionally well-plotted. “The Cartel” opens by introducing its hero, the crime boss Carter Diamond; on page 9, a gunshot spatters Diamond’s brain across the interior of a police cruiser. The book then flashes back seven years and begins to hurtle forward again — a bullet train, whizzing readers through shifting alliances, romantic entanglements and betrayals, kidnappings, shootouts with Haitian and Dominican gangsters, and a cliffhanger closing scene that leaves the novel’s heroine tied to a chair in a basement, gruesomely tortured to the edge of death. Ashley & JaQuavis’s books are not Ralph Ellison, certainly, but they build up quite a head of steam. They move.

The Colemans are moving themselves these days. They recently signed a deal with St. Martin’s Press, which will bring out the next installment in the “Cartel” series as well as new solo series by both writers. The St. Martin’s deal is both lucrative and legitimizing — a validation of Ashley and JaQuavis’s work by one of publishing’s most venerable houses. The Colemans’ ambitions have grown, as well. A recent trilogy, “Murderville,” tackles human trafficking and the blood-diamond industry in West Africa, with storylines that sweep from Sierra Leone to Mexico to Los Angeles. Increasingly, Ashley & JaQuavis are leaning on research — traveling to far-flung settings and hitting the books in the libraries — and spending less time mining their own rough-and-tumble past.

But Flint remains a source of inspiration. One evening not long ago, JaQuavis led me on a tour of his hometown: a popular roadside bar; the parking lot where he met the undercover cop for the ill-fated drug deal; Ashley’s old house, the site of his almost-arrest. He took me to a ramshackle vehicle repair shop on Flint’s west side, where he worked as a kid, washing cars. He showed me a bathroom at the rear of the garage, where, at age 12, he sneaked away to inspect the first “boulder” of crack that he ever sold. A spray-painted sign on the garage wall, which JaQuavis remembered from his time at the car wash, offered words of warning:

WHAT EVERY YOUNG MAN SHOULD KNOW
ABOUT USING A GUN:
MURDER . . . 30 Years
ARMED ROBBERY . . . 15 Years
ASSAULT . . . 15 Years
RAPE . . . 20 Years
POSSESSION . . . 5 Years
JACKING . . . 20 YEARS

“We still love Flint, Michigan,” JaQuavis says. “It’s so seedy, so treacherous. But there’s some heart in this city. This is where it all started, selling books out the box. In the days when we would get those little $40,000 advances, they’d send us a couple boxes of books for free. We would hit the streets to sell our books, right out of the car trunk. It was a hustle. It still is.”

One old neighborhood asset that the Colemans have not shaken off is swagger. “My wife is the best female writer in the game,” JaQuavis told me. “I believe I’m the best male writer in the game. I’m sleeping next to the best writer in the world. And she’s doing the same.”

 
From T Magazine: Street Lit’s Power Couple

The bottle Mr. Sokolin famously broke was a 1787 Château Margaux, which was said to have belonged to Thomas Jefferson. Mr. Sokolin had been hoping to sell it for $519,750.

William Sokolin, Wine Seller Who Broke Famed Bottle, Dies at 85
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