It is Black History Month currently and I just wanted to share just some of my favorite books by Black authors. A lot of them are YA (Young Adult Fiction) because well…it’s my favorite genre. I love these books and hopefully you will too.
If I’ve written a review on that particular book, that review will be linked. You will also see a link of where to buy the book as well. Happy reading!!
Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds
The chokehold that this man books have on my wallet lol. I love this man so much. It’s written in verse so it’s a super easy read. It’s very fast paced and will leave you hooked. The story is about a young teen named Will whose brother was killed and so he wanted to get revenge and kill the person he thought killed his brother. On the way down the elevator in his apartment building, he’s met with “ghosts” from his past. Each “ghosts” tell him how they died and the impact it made on them and their family. Will learns something new on each floor about his brother’s murder that he never knew before. You can buy this book here.
Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé
This book was so much fun. It’s truly a great mix of Get Out and Gossip Girl. It centers on two students, Deven and Chiamaka, the only two black students (that’s important) at Niveus Private Academy. It’s their senior year and they’re named like one of the prefects in their class. However, sh*t start hitting the fan. Secrets start becoming uncovered. Accusations start happening. Utter chaos start happening and their in the center of it all…or so it seems. In Gossip Girl fashion, Aces sends out random photos or messeges featuring them in some incriminating circumstances. One student is in jeapordy of losing a scholarship (and not getting into Julliard) and another is in danger of having a criminal record thereby kissing an Ivy league school goodbye. Throughout the story secrets about the school are discovered. Like it’s a wild ride. Just how deep does this sick prank go? Read the book to find out! Buy it here.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
This book was later made into a movie. This book centers Starr Carter who goes to a prestigous private school on a more affluent side of town. One day she goes to a party and her friend was shot and killed when the cop who stopped them and pulled them over. The cop thought he was reaching for a gun when he was reaching for a hair brush.They trashed him in the media when Starr knows her friend and witnessed what happened! She’s thrown into the aftermath of it all. She has to choose between staying silent or speaking out against injustice. Starr questions her friends, neighborhood, school, everything. Oh and there may or may not be some swirling going on. Buy it here.
Happily Ever Afters by Elise Bryant
I’ve actually just finished this book and the review will be live on my blog next month. I love this book because it’s a Romance and it features a black girl who deserves a happy ending. I won’t lie, this book put me through it. I had to put it down for like two days! The book is about Tessa Johnson who is new to a school and is 16 years old. She goes to a Magnet School/Conservatory and is new to the school. She’s in a Creative Writing program and she has encountered writers block on top of her imposter syndrome. She’s always had to write her own happy endings so she’s currently working on a Romance book when her friend suggest that to get inspiration for her story, she get a romance story of her own. There’s a love triangle and friends to lovers trope in this, which is something I love. She loses herself trying to find love and must work to get back to who she is. She questions who she is and what she stands for. It’s a great story. You can buy it here.
The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett
This book is a historical fiction tale about twin sisters who are from a small town in the south. The residents of this town are very light skinned (this is important). After a challenging childhood, the girls decide to run away from home. In the midst of this, they’ve gone their separate ways with one sister choosing to live her life as a white woman and the other running away from an abusive relationship. They haven’t heard from each other from years but as fate would have it, they are reconnected due to their daughters meeting each other. The story starts from the 1950s and goes on to the ’90s. It was really heavy because this book challenges how we each personally choose to identify as. There’s racism and colorism and it shows how it affects everyone. It’s really a fantastic book! Buy it here.
Beasts of Prey by Ayana Grey
There’s no such thing as magic in the broken city of Lkossa, especially for sixteen-year-old Koffi, who indentured to the notorious Night Zoo, knows the fearsome creatures in her care and paying off her family’s debts to secure their eventual freedom can be her only focus. But the night those she loves are gravely threatened by the Zoo’s cruel master, Koffi unleashes a power she doesn’t fully understand, upending her life completely.As the second son of a decorated hero, Ekon is all but destined to become a Son of the Six–an elite warrior–and uphold a family legacy. But on the night of his final rite of passage, Ekon encounters not only the Shetani–a vicious monster that has plagued the city for nearly a century and stalks his nightmares–but Koffi who seems to have the power to ward off the beast. Koffi’s power ultimately saves Ekon, but his choice to let her flee dooms his hopes of becoming a warrior. Koffi and Ekon form a tentative alliance and together enter the Greater Jungle, a world steeped in wild, frightening magic and untold dangers. The hunt begins. But it quickly becomes unclear whether they are the hunters or the hunted. Buy it here. (Side note: part two comes out later this year and I’m so excited!)
Amari and the Night Brothers by B.B. Alston
This book gave me all the Men In Black feels (I might be aging myself). This middle grade book is about a a girl named Amari Peters who’s dealing with a lot. She goes to a private school but the kids treats her differently because she comes from the hood and she’s not as rich as they are. She’s also dealing the the mysterious disappearance of her brother Quinten who went missing during his very secretive job that he had. She comes home one day and finds a ticking briefcase. When she opens it, she finds an invitation from the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs for her to try out at a summer program for kids with magic. She has to try-out to get into the program against kids who’ve known about magic their entire lives (they also exclude her from hanging out with them). When she gets there, she finds out that the magic that she has is illegal! On a quest to find her brother and defeat an evil magician, Amari has to prove to herself and others that she does belong with the Bureau and that she will find her brother. Buy it here.
One more thought…as you may or may not know, I’ve written a book! Its a memoir/personal development book on my life (clearly) and my growth and mental health journey. If you want to check it out, you can buy it here. Oh and I sell reading journals (or reading logs depending on what you call them). They can be purchased on my site! You can also go to Etsy if you want to check those out as well. I have a junior reader’s version and an adult version!
Happy Black History Month!