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He becomes the Black Flamingo, in a brilliant story about self-emancipation and self-acceptance, all told in verse. This fabulous, glamorous, and absolutely celebratory novel about finding and championing your real self at the intersection of multiple identities deserves a space on your shelf. The protagonist, Zélie Adebola, is fighting to restore magic to the land of Orïsha, after the king ordered all the magicians killed.
Epic high fantasy worldbuilding complete with snow leopards , meets intelligent analysis of social power, racial tensions, and prejudice, in a debut that grips readers from page one. The good news? begins with a shooting. In this poignant, thoughtful, and inspirational novel, Angie Thomas tells a tale of the Black Lives Matter age, but make no mistake: this is no temporary trend, but a literary masterpiece.
This sparse, quick-paced book will have you on the edge of your seat, as it cleverly exposes the complexities of teenage violence. The two have been friends for a long time, but their blossoming romance is absolutely forbidden. This beautiful, intelligent, and devastating book has earned its place as a Young Adult fiction classic, and it has never been more timely. For Nnenna, growing up means reaching for her Igbo-Nigerian heritage, inherited from her father.
Nnenna is nearly seventeen and living in Manchester, with her white mother, who is resistant to questioning. Despite its funny outlook, The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney is engaged in asking serious questions about race, growing up, sexuality, and personal heritage.
This intelligent and moving book is sure to warm your heart! But her friends also show her that she has greater powers than she realizes: the magical powers of the Leopard People. Powerful and devastating, Citizen shines a light on daily microaggressions and wider social phenomena alike.
It leaves readers with a new and unsettling clarity — the mark of a masterpiece. This Dylan Thomas Prize-winning collection touches on subjects like family, negotiating belonging between countries, racism, and music. This deeply affecting collection will move and affect you. Eliot Prize-winning collection. This moving and tender book looks at subjects as wide-ranging as family, the Windrush generation, slavery, racism, joy for life, heritage, and class.
This is a book to hold close to your heart. For Bernard, these are issues integral to understanding their place in contemporary British society, as a queer Black person. Seeing a connection between Grenfell and the New Cross fire, Surge penetrates time to highlight the lack of progress made.
Heartbreaking, poignant, and ambitiously conceived, this collection is an important addition to the British poetry scene. For a little while, let Antrobus guide you through it, and show you the world in a whole new way. A masterclass in writing from different perspectives, The Adoption Papers is about a Black girl adopted by a white Scottish couple. Juggling the points of view of the child, mother, and biological mother, this sensitive collection is able to capture the emotional intricacies and complexities of adoption in heartbreaking verse.
This brave, witty, and honest book is an adoption literature classic, and a must-read literary achievement. But the justice system has always had a different story to tell. In this searing account of structural racism in the justice system, legal scholar Michelle Alexander shows that preventing the mass incarceration of people of colour especially Black men should be an utmost priority.
This is a book that calls the nation to come to terms with its own past of slavery, and to take action to recognize and battle its surviving legacies. Without a doubt, one of the most important nonfictional works of recent decades. For decades, Black Americans left the south, searching for better prospects in the western and northern states. This epic tale of the Great Migration, exhaustively researched by its Pulitzer-winning author, is told through the life stories of three African Americans: Robert Foster, Ida Mae Gladney, and George Starling, who left Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida respectively, to pursue new lives.
This major historical book is a beautifully-told, enlightening portrait of American history. In sharing her own life story, Michelle Obama becomes both role model and champion — a force of inspiration for every woman and young people worldwide. And the difference between the two is crucial.
This poetic classic of the autobiography genre is a testament to human strength and resilience. This deeply affecting coming-of-age book discusses subjects such as race, trauma, and sexual abuse with honesty and wisdom. Writers like Jesmyn Ward, N.
Jemisin, Jacqueline Woodson, and Tayari Jones all weigh in on the subject of seeing yourself represented in literature. The result is a book that is a joy to read, and an inspiring and exciting ode to Black sisterhood.
This stunning memoir by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Tracy K. Forced to reckon with her own conflicted sense of identity and shaken faith, Smith finds a whole new approach to selfhood and belonging. Delicately and honestly written, this memoir is filled with light that is anything but ordinary. Not just a writer but a spokesperson, Roxane Gay writes with sensitivity and intimacy about food and the body.
In her deeply personal memoir Hunger, she uses her own struggles — her rape, her overeating, and the reality of living as a sizable woman — to explore our shared anxieties surrounding pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. Gay discusses with candor what it means to take care of yourself when you crave delicious and satisfying food, but live in a world where the open hatred of fat people is tolerated, even encouraged, and you yourself want a smaller, safer body.
Looking to diversify your bookshelf even more? Or simply want to read authors on the forefront of literary development? Check out our list of 20 Latinx authors with books that belong on your TBR list. On the 1st of January , the seminal works of became yours to have, to read, and to adapt! And what a year it was for literature. Our guide to reading the Sherlock Holmes books, complete with suggestions about the order you should read them in, historical fun facts, and a peek into Sherlock's many literary afterlives.
Or sign up with an. Log in. Blog — Posted on Tuesday, Sep 29 70 Must-Read Books by Black Authors in The re-energized efforts of the Black Lives Matter movement in shone a light on many corners of Black culture. Fiction 1. The Sellout by Paul Beatty.
Buy on Amazon Add to library. Three terrible things happen in a single day. Essun, masquerading as an ordinary schoolteacher in a quiet small town, comes home to find that her husband has brutally murdered their son and kidnapped their daughter.
Mighty Sanze, the empire whose innovations have been civilization's bedrock for a thousand years, collapses as its greatest city is destroyed by a madman's vengeance.
And worst of all, across the heartland of the world's sole continent, a great red rift has been been torn which spews ash enough to darken the sky for years. Or centuries. But this is the Stillness, a land long familiar with struggle, and where orogenes -- those who wield the power of the earth as a weapon -- are feared far more than the long cold night.
Essun has remembered herself, and she will have her daughter back. She does not care if the world falls apart around her. Essun will break it herself, if she must, to save her daughter. The Fifth Season by N.
Sethe was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has borne the unthinkable and not gone mad, yet she is still held captive by memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. Sethe works at beating back the past, but it makes itself heard and felt incessantly in her memory and in the lives of those around her.
Beloved by Toni Morrison. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston. From the acclaimed author of The Book of Night Women comes a masterfully written novel that explores the attempted assassination of Bob Marley in the late s. On December 3, , just before the Jamaican general election and two days before Bob Marley was to play the Smile Jamaica Concert, gunmen stormed his house, machine guns blazing.
The attack nearly killed the Reggae superstar, his wife, and his manager, and injured several others. Marley would go on to perform at the free concert on December 5, but he left the country the next day, not to return for two years. Deftly spanning decades and continents and peopled with a wide range of characters—assassins, journalists, drug dealers, and even ghosts —A Brief History of Seven Killings is the fictional exploration of that dangerous and unstable time and its bloody aftermath, from the streets and slums of Kingston in the �70s, to the crack wars in �80s New York, to a radically altered Jamaica in the �90s.
A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James. Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James. Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. The Color Purple by Alice Walker. This highly acclaimed post-apocalyptic novel of hope and terror from award-winning author Octavia E.
When global climate change and economic crises lead to social chaos in the early s, California becomes full of dangers, from pervasive water shortage to masses of vagabonds who will do anything to live to see another day. Fifteen-year-old Lauren Olamina lives inside a gated community with her preacher father, family, and neighbors, sheltered from the surrounding anarchy. In a society where any vulnerability is a risk, she suffers from hyperempathy, a debilitating sensitivity to others' emotions.
Precocious and clear-eyed, Lauren must make her voice heard in order to protect her loved ones from the imminent disasters her small community stubbornly ignores. But what begins as a fight for survival soon leads to something much more: the birth of a new faith and a startling vision of human destiny. jpg'},'provider':'amazon','authors':['Octavia E. Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Ward is a major American writer, multiply awarded and universally lauded, and in Sing, Unburied, Sing she is at the height of her powers.
Jojo and his toddler sister, Kayla, live with their grandparents, Mam and Pop, and the occasional presence of their drug-addicted mother, Leonie, on a farm on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Sing, Unburied, Sing grapples with the ugly truths at the heart of the American story and the power, and limitations, of the bonds of family. Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward. Salvage the Bone is muscled with poetry, revelatory, and real. Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison.
The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize Winner of the National Book Award Winner of the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award Finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize Longlisted for the Prix Medicis One of the Best books of the Year: The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR , The Boston Globe, The Seattle Times, HuffPost, Esquire, Minneapolis Star Tribune Cora is a young slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia.
An outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is on the cusp of womanhood--where greater pain awaits. And so when Caesar, a slave who has recently arrived from Virginia, urges her to join him on the Underground Railroad, she seizes the opportunity and escapes with him. In Colson Whitehead's ingenious conception, the Underground Railroad is no mere metaphor: engineers and conductors operate a secret network of actual tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil.
Cora embarks on a harrowing flight from one state to the next, encountering, like Gulliver, strange yet familiar iterations of her own world at each stop. As Whitehead brilliantly re-creates the terrors of the antebellum era, he weaves in the saga of our nation, from the brutal abduction of Africans to the unfulfilled promises of the present day.
The Underground Railroad is both the gripping tale of one woman's will to escape the horrors of bondage--and a powerful meditation on the history we all share. The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. Go Tell It on the Mountain by James Baldwin. Swing Time by Zadie Smith. Three and they label you a serial killer.
How could she not be? Her sister, Ayoola, is many things: the favorite child, the beautiful one, possibly sociopathic. And now Ayoola's third boyfriend in a row is dead. Korede's practicality is the sisters' saving grace. Not that she gets any credit.
Korede has long been in love with a kind, handsome doctor at the hospital where she works. She dreams of the day when he will realize that she's exactly what he needs. But when he asks Korede for Ayoola's phone number, she must reckon with what her sister has become and how far she's willing to go to protect her.
Sharp as nails and full of deadpan wit, Oyinkan Braithwaite's deliciously deadly debut is as fun as it is frightening. My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite. The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett. Lori Harvey Shares Uncompromising Approach to Dating Since Michael B. Jordan Breakup. Celebrity Couples. Chris Evans. Chris Evans Is "Laser-Focused" on Finding a Partner to Share His Life With. Now You Know. Entertainment News Jeremy Allen White and Zac Efron Team Up to Play Wrestlers in New A24 Movie by Victoria Edel 2 hours ago.
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The re-energized efforts of the Black Lives Matter movement in shone a light on many corners of Black culture. For lots of readers, this moment provided fresh inspiration to seek out new Black authors and to explore the rich variety of Black literature, whose stories span both borders and generations, illuminating a huge variety of experiences.
Our hand-picked list includes several famous black authors you might recognize — Toni Morrison, Ralph Ellison, James Baldwin — as well as some of the most promising up-and-coming names. In The Sellout , Paul Beatty introduces us to a young, Black watermelon-and-weed grower, named Me. Powered by a wicked wit, this caustic but heartfelt satirical novel turns themes of racism and slavery inside out in service of a devastatingly clever message. In The Fifth Season , a red rift tears through the land, spewing enough ash to darken the sky for years.
Without the resources necessary to get through the long, dark night, there will be war all across the Stillness — and Essun must pursue her missing daughter through this deadly, dying land. The seminal work from a giant of modern literature, Beloved chronicles the experiences of Sethe, an ex-slave living with her daughter in a house haunted by secrets. A landmark depiction of the legacy of slavery, an engrossing ghost-story, and a reflection on motherhood and family, Beloved is so much more than the sum of its parts.
Janie Crawford is sixteen when her grandmother catches her kissing a shiftless boy and marries her off to an old man with sixty acres. The quest for independence which ensues sees Janie through three marriages and into a journey back to her roots.
Though the reggae star survived, the gunmen were never caught. Black Leopard, Red Wolf follows Tracker, renowned for you guessed it his ability to track people. Hired to find a missing boy, along with a motley crew of supernatural mercenaries, Tracker uncovers a conspiracy in the process.
Americanah follows two Nigerian characters, Ifemelu and Obinze, teenagers in love who drift apart when Ifemelu moves to America.
This novel wears its politics on its sleeve, acutely describing how it feels to try and navigate multiple cultures — a feeling that is endemic to being an immigrant — and openly debating the lived experiences of Black people, American or not. The overt nature of the politics does not come at the cost of plot of characterization, however, and Adichie writes with sagacious humor.
Walker unapologetically writes Southern Black women into world literature in her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, The Color Purple. It tells the tale of Celie, a young African-American woman growing up in poverty in segregated Georgia. Then, she meets Shug, a singer and magic-maker who helps her discover the power of her own spirit. In America, violence rules and only the rich are safe.
But one woman has the power to change everything. Along with a handful of refugees, she is forced to go on a dangerous journey North — and on the way, she comes up with a revolutionary idea that might just save mankind. In this amusingly banal odyssey full of gas station lethargy and dodgy drug deals, Ward transplants the road novel into twenty-first century America, imbuing it with ancestral voices, mythical tropes, and hypnotic lyricism.
Sing, Unburied, Sing is a harrowing and majestic work from an extraordinary author. Salvage the Bones tells the story of a desperately poor family in the Mississippi backwoods, as hurricane Katrina approaches. Effia and Esi are half-sisters, born in 18th century Ghana. When one is sold into slavery and the other marries a slaver, their paths diverge. Homegoing follows their descendants through eight generations: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the missionary schools of Ghana to Jazz Age Harlem.
Epic in its canvas, yet intimate in its portraits, Homegoing is a searing historical fiction debut from a masterly new Black author. Published in , Invisible Man was immediately hailed as a seminal work of American fiction. From the Deep South, to the streets of Harlem; expulsion from college, to lightning success as the leader of a communist organization — Ellison's nameless protagonist ushers readers into a parallel universe that throws our own into harsh relief.
This is where Elwood Curtis — a Black boy growing up in Jim Crow-era Florida — finds himself in The Nickel Boys. Rising tension between the two friends leads to a decision with repercussions that will echo through the ages.
Cora is a slave on a plantation in Georgia. So, when Caesar tells her about an underground railroad, they decide to escape North, only to be pursued by a relentless slave-master. A winner of the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award, The Underground Railroad is a tour de force. As one of the greatest Black authors, Baldwin published a slew of novels, biographies, and essays in his lifetime. Drawing on his boyhood, Baldwin tells the story of Johnny Grimes growing up in s Harlem, grappling with his religion, his sexuality, and his abusive minister father.
Though this novel has a lot to say about race, religion, class, and sexuality, it does so in a way that acknowledges the nuance of the human experience. This is a blazing, enduring, hymn of a novel. It's a close but complicated friendship that ends abruptly in their twenties, never to be rekindled, but never quite forgotten. Beneath the virtuosic plot lies a keen social commentary on betterment: Smith asks us to consider whether the ability to change is really a form of power.
With shifting identities, our narrator seeks, above all, a place where she belongs. Could that place be a best friend? A morbidly funny mixture of family saga and slashfest set in Lagos, Nigeria, My Sister, the Serial Killer is a satirical thriller about how blood is thicker and harder to get out of the carpet than water. Korede's life is constantly upended as she's forced to clean up after her sister Ayoola, who has a tendency to kill her boyfriends.
This debut novel from Black author Oyinkan Braithwaite is as smart and addictive as Killing Eve. The Vignes sisters will always be identical. But when they run away from the southern Black community where they were raised, they choose to live in very different worlds. One returns to her hometown with her Black daughter, while the other decides to live her life passing as a white woman. Though they're separated, their lives are still very much intertwined. Weaving together multiple generations and their stories, The Vanishing Half looks well beyond issues of race, to consider the lasting influence of our pasts, and to explore why people are compelled to live as someone other than themselves.
When this mysterious ability saves him from drowning, Hiram and fellow slave Sophia run away to freedom in the North. Though Coates illuminates the violent degradations heaped upon generations of runaways who waged war to make lives with the people they loved, he does so while ensuring they retain their dignity. First published in , Chinua Achebe's stark, coolly ironic masterpiece has sold over ten million copies in forty-five languages. It tells the story of Okonkwo: the greatest fighter alive, his fame is spreading like wildfire throughout West-Africa.
But when he accidentally kills a clansman his life begins to fall apart. Often compared to the great Greek tragedies, Things Fall Apart is an arresting parable about a proud but helpless man witnessing the collapse of his village, as old ways come into contact with new. But over the course of a blustery end-of-summer weekend, a series of confrontations expose hidden currents of hostility and desire, forcing him to grapple with the long shadows of his childhood.
This quiet, intimate and queer novel , from an electric new Black author, strives to make Black readers feel seen. Her missteps and misadventures are snort-your-tea-out funny one moment and utterly heart-breaking the next.
As he explores his sexuality and tries to find a place among his family, the community swells around him, their stories woven into his: a young woman caught in an affair, a rag-tag baseball team, a drug-dealer who takes a Guatemalan teen under his wing, and a camera-shy mythical beast. Monk Ellison is a novelist whose career has bottomed out.
Odd-mannered and obsessive, Aster lives a lonely life in the low-deck slums of the HSS Matilda , a generational starship ferrying the last of humanity to a mythical Promised Land. Its leaders — a white supremacy cult called the Sovereignty — run the ship on the labor and intimidation of dark-skinned sharecroppers like Aster. From the National Book Award-winning author of Another Brooklyn and Brown Girl Dreaming comes a striking new exploration of identity, class, race, and status.
Woodson deftly considers the ways in which young people are so often pushed into making life-changing decisions before they even know who they are. Then, when tragedy strikes, she is sold again, trapped in subservience, this time to a wealthy household in Lagos, where no one speaks about the disappearance of her predecessor, Rebecca.
Through it all, Adunni will not be silenced. In a whisper, in song, in broken English — she finds a way to speak for herself, for Rebecca, and for all those who struggle to be heard. A page-turning debut about the messy dynamics of privilege, Such a Fun Age introduces us to cash-strapped babysitter Emira Tucker and her employer Alix Chamberlain.
Rooted in Igbo cosmology, Freshwater charts the extraordinary journey of a broken, young Nigerian woman called Ada with and towards her many different, even divergent, selves. At 68, Loretha Curry is far from thinking that her best days are behind her. Weaving through time and space with crackling energy, Girl, Woman, Other tracks the lives of a dozen Black, British women, and the people they have loved and unloved, through generations and across social classes.
However, with prose rhythms that feel like the wilful impulses of inner thought, Evaristo manages to make readers feel intimately connected to twelve different characters, each with a distinctive and vibrant voice. This Man Booker Prize-winner is a vibrantly contemporary kind of history — a love song to modern Britain and Black womanhood. From a wide range of British Black authors — award-winning to previously unpublished — the stories in this stand-out anthology offer contemporary conversations around different experiences of being British.
The breadth of this experience is evident in the rich variety of styles, forms and themes. Raw realism gives way to pure lyricism; tender unrequited yearnings rub shoulders with humorous moments of epiphany.
The title Closure is a subversive one, for, much like life, the stories in this anthology rarely end the way we imagine they will. This is a love story. But one that centres on an appalling miscarriage of justice. Newlyweds, Celestial and Roy, are the embodiment of the American Dream, until Roy is wrongly accused of rape and sentenced to twelve years. What follows is a tender, rousing account of three people who are at once bound together and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage probes important ideas with emotional intelligence and a colossal heart.
Everything Inside is a short story collection set in the Caribbean, Miami, and Port-au-Prince. The rest of the novel examines the effects of this singular event on a number of characters: the church members, the neighbors, the mafia, the witnesses, and the police officers called to the scene. In an ambitious novel bursting with energy, McBride makes the case for the humanizing power of trust, love, and hope, all against the vibrant backdrop of s New York.
Though the stories are set in real places, includingLondon and Berlin, they chart a movement into the fantastic and peculiar. In these vividly imagined, somewhat abstract stories, bizarre, unexplained, and downright weird things begin to happen, as reality slowly metamorphoses into something new This striking, original, and ever-unpredictable collection stands out for its poetic evocation of all things odd and beautiful.
Belinda is a housegirl in Ghana, and is growing closer to year-old Mary when she is suddenly summoned to live in London with Amma. The two teenagers are vastly different, but together, they grapple with shared questions about their identities, their sexualities, and the pressure of growing up. This refreshing coming-of-age novel is a touching tribute to the tentative reach for freedom of queer adolescence, rich with sensitive observations about the two girls. Digger uses his skill for bone-reading passed down by his grandmother , and for recognizing voices, to contribute to the missing person cases in Camaho.
Face-to-face with the corrupt underbelly of the island, Digger and his intelligent colleague Kathleen Stanislaus pursue a cold case into the dark corners of the criminal world. This tightly-plotted and suspenseful literary novel is a masterclass in crime writing, and features powerful characters who will really get under your skin.
With her son on the brink of death, the narrator begins to tell a story about the past, travelling back in time to
His work is profoundly tender, often wry and always sharply observed. This is New York during the financial crisis. Juggling the points of view of the child, mother, and biological mother, this sensitive collection is able to capture the emotional intricacies and complexities of adoption in heartbreaking verse. TItled after the US Supreme Court ruling that legalized interracial marriage, Loving Day is a celebration of mixed-race identity. Cora is a slave on a plantation in Georgia. But the justice system has always had a different story to tell. But this is the Stillness, a land long familiar with struggle, and where orogenes -- those who wield the power of the earth as a weapon -- are feared far more than the long cold night.But this is the Stillness, black book online dating, a land long familiar with struggle, and where orogenes -- those who wield the power of the earth as a weapon -- are feared far more than the long cold night. Though the stories are set in real places, includingLondon and Berlin, they chart a movement black book online dating the fantastic and peculiar. UC Press Blog Where Bright Minds Share Bold Ideas. Would you like to turn on POPSUGAR desktop notifications to get breaking news ASAP? TItled after the US Supreme Court ruling that legalized interracial marriage, Loving Day is a celebration of mixed-race identity.