Monday, February 18, 2019

Black History Month Reads

Happy Black History Month friends! 2019 is proving to be just as weird as 2018, but there have been some major strides in Black representation in the media. Today I'll share books by Black authors that I love as well as some books I desperately want to read!

Children of Blood and Bone: There isn't enough kidlit fantasy with Black main characters so I recommend this based on the fact that it's fantasy based on African mythology. It's a fun adventure with allusions to real world problems.

Scythe: Neal Shusterman knows how to write a thought-provoking dystopia with layers and layers of complexities. You don't even have to like dystopias to enjoy this book, I think everyone will be able to take something away from this series. 

The Hate U Give: If you want an honest depiction of growing up Black in a country that makes it clear that Black people are guilty until found innocent, you need to read The Hate U Give. Besides the main conflict of a young woman seeing her friend gunned down by a cop, Thomas also tackles the idea of juggling two identities, making yourself seem "safe" to White people and the complexities of gangs and how easy it is to get caught up in the gang life. 

Dear Martin: Similar to The Hate U Give, Dear Martin highlights the Black experience from a young Black boy who is struggling to understand how he, a smart and caring human being, got pulled over by the cops for nothing. By playing with different formats, What I enjoyed about this book was the different formats Nic Stone played with, it made the book easy to fly through. 

The Belles: If you ever have the opportunity, go to an event that Dhonielle Clayton is speaking. It's fascinating to hear her inspiration and how ugly a book about beauty can be. It's terrifying what people are willing to do for beauty and how people can treat each other. There are also some allusions to slavery that become more prominent in the sequel, the Everlasting Rose. 

Long Way Down: I'm not a verse reader, but Reynold' poetic style was perfect for this story. The story had me from start to finish and it was impressive the blow Reynolds was able to deliver in 8 seconds. I also loved that his exploration of gun violence touched on many levels, from the idea of getting revenge to the many people who are affected. 

The Wedding Date: I know I'm late, but The Wedding Date gives me the ultimate Valentine's Day feels. The set-up is very rom-comy and I appreciated that Guillory delved into the complicated nature of interracial relationships. While I didn't love the sequel as much, I know I'll be reading anything Guillory writes. 

Song of Blood and Stone: (New) Adult Fantasy with references to segregation and racism. While the romance was a bit too insta-lovey for me, I appreciated the storytelling and can't wait to read the updated companion novels. 

Monday's Not Coming: Black girls go missing every day and no one seems to blink an eye. Tiffany D. Jackson's thriller regarding a 13 year-old who was missing for over 6 months was a definite page turner and make you think how Black children are treated by society as a whole. 

A Princess Theory: I'm so happy that fun rom-coms are making a comeback and this series hits the spot. This series boosts complicated women who struggle to let equally complicated men into their lives, with some laughs along the way. 

An Extraordinary Union: This series taught me more much more about the Civil War than any of my High School teachers did. Each book in this series highlighted Black people and their involvement in helping the Union win, along with finding love in messy situations. 

Allegedly: Tiffany D. Jackson officially knows how to mess with me. Allegedly showed the ugly side of juvenile detention centers and how these troubled teens are typically the ones who get left behind. Of course there is a messed up ending because it's Tiffany D. Jackson. 

What books have you read? 
What books do you want to read? 
How to you ensure that you are reading diversely? 


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