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Books I Want to Read by Black Female Authors

I drafted my blog post that went up this morning. Not bringing attention to the racism pandemic happening in our country (and the world, for that matter) was highly insensitive. Although I have posted on my Instagram story that I am choosing to post "regular" content, I want it to be very clear that in doing so, I am not lacking empathy for the situation or disregarding it at all. Instead, I am choosing to support offline, by living a positive life and spreading love to those around me, on and off of social media.

I am very much so going to continue to be sensitive toward and supportive of what is happening. The entire situation regarding George Floyd's death and what it has brought to light regarding racism in our country is devasting and heartbreaking. It is so sad to think about the ways I have been privileged in my life and how these privileges don't even occur to me half the time as a white person.

You guys know I love to read and share my favorite books on here, but I have now realized that I have not been reading from a diverse group of authors... To be honest, I have no idea how many books I have read by a Black author. I pay more attention to whether I am going to enjoy the story than to who wrote it. However, now is the time to support Black authors and their stories, not just because the author is Black, but because their work is just as valuable and beautiful and should not be ignored!

So, here are some books I am adding to my reading list by Black female authors. I hope you feel inspired to check them out yourselves!

Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid
I've had this book on my to-read list for a few months. Here's the summary:

A striking and surprising debut novel from an exhilarating new voice, Such a Fun Age is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both.

Alix Chamberlain is a woman who gets what she wants and has made a living, with her confidence-driven brand, showing other women how to do the same. So she is shocked when her babysitter, Emira Tucker, is confronted while watching the Chamberlains' toddler one night, walking the aisles of their local high-end supermarket. The store's security guard, seeing a young black woman out late with a white child, accuses Emira of kidnapping two-year-old Briar. A small crowd gathers, a bystander films everything, and Emira is furious and humiliated. Alix resolves to make things right.

But Emira herself is aimless, broke, and wary of Alix's desire to help. At twenty-five, she is about to lose her health insurance and has no idea what to do with her life. When the video of Emira unearths someone from Alix's past, both women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know about themselves, and each other.

Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
Thank you to Grace for sharing this one! Here's the summary:

Camino Rios lives for the summers when her father visits her in the Dominican Republic. But this time, on the day when his plane is supposed to land, Camino arrives at the airport to see crowds of crying people… In New York City, Yahaira Rios is called to the principal’s office, where her mother is waiting to tell her that her father, her hero, has died in a plane crash. Separated by distance—and Papi’s secrets—the two girls are forced to face a new reality in which their father is dead and their lives are forever altered. And then, when it seems like they’ve lost everything of their father, they learn of each other.

Becoming by Michelle Obama
Ok I've been wanting to read this forever and have heard nothing but great things... I mean, after all, it's Michelle Obama! I probably don't even need to convince you with this one, but nonetheless, here's the summary:

In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era. As First Lady of the United States of America—the first African American to serve in that role—she helped create the most welcoming and inclusive White House in history, while also establishing herself as a powerful advocate for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world, dramatically changing the ways that families pursue healthier and more active lives, and standing with her husband as he led America through some of its most harrowing moments. Along the way, she showed us a few dance moves, crushed Carpool Karaoke, and raised two down-to-earth daughters under an unforgiving media glare.

In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address. With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it—in her own words and on her own terms. Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations—and whose story inspires us to do the same.

Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes
Shonda Rhimes produced Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, Private Practice, and more, but it turns out she's an introvert! And she wrote an entire memoir about how saying yes to things can change your life. I definitely want to read this one! Here's the summary:

In this poignant, hilarious and deeply intimate call to arms, Hollywood's most powerful woman, the mega-talented creator of Grey's Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away with Murder and Catch, reveals how saying YES changed her life - and how it can change yours too. With three hit shows on television and three children at home, Shonda Rhimes had lots of good reasons to say no when invitations arrived. Hollywood party? No. Speaking engagement? No. Media appearances? No. And to an introvert like Shonda, who describes herself as 'hugging the walls' at social events and experiencing panic attacks before press interviews, there was a particular benefit to saying no: nothing new to fear. Then came Thanksgiving 2013, when Shonda's sister Delorse muttered six little words at her: You never say yes to anything. Profound, impassioned and laugh-out-loud funny, in Year of Yes Shonda Rhimes reveals how saying YES changed - and saved - her life. And inspires readers everywhere to change their own lives with one little word: Yes.

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
I forget who posted about this book, but a blogger I follow read this and said it was absolutely beautiful. Here's the summary:

Newlyweds, Celestial and Roy, are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive and she is artist on the brink of an exciting career. They are settling into the routine of their life together, when they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy’s time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
I want to read this and see the movie so badly!! I've seen the trailer for the movie and it looks so powerful and amazing. Here's the book summary:

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
This is another one that I both want to read and watch. I've been wanting to since I saw the trailer for this movie with Yara Shahidi (who I seriously think is the coolest person ever and so gorgeous). Here's the summary:

Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?


Do you have any book recs? I would love to check them out!

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