It’s one of my favorite times of the year. There are lots of ways to celebrate the wealth and diversity of African culture and reading is perhaps the easiest and best. While we might not be able to visit museums and shows or personally interview historical figures, we can certainly read what those heroes have written about their experiences, in memoirs or fictionalized versions of real events.
No, I don’t read exclusively books by African American authors in February, but I do try to prioritize the books I have by Black people. Here are a few of the books on my reading list this month:
- The Final Revival of Opal and Nev by Dawnie Walton
- Hell of A Book by Jason Mott
- All That She Carried by Tiya Miles
- If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin
- Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
- The Souls of Black Folk by W. E. B. Du Bois
- The Third Mrs. Galway by Deidre Sinott
- Between The Devil and The Deep Blue Sea by Andre Lewis Carter
- A Tall History of Sugar by Curdella Forbes
- Four Hundred Souls Edited by Ibram X. Kendi & Keisha N. Blaine
3 books by African American authors that I read last year and highly recommend are:
- The Love Songs of W. E. B. Du Bois by Honoree Fanonne Jeffers
- Her Honor by LaDoris Hazzard Cordell
- Soul Food Love by Alice Randall & Caroline Randall Williams
If you’re looking for a place to start, any of these would be a good entry – The Love Songs is a long novel but well worth the long relationship because you learn about several generations of American history and it’s so easy to get immersed in the character’s lives ; Her Honor is a former courtroom judge’s recollections of her time on the bench as well as an insightful discussion of the law; Soul Food Love views Black history through one family’s experiences and the food that was the bane and salve of their existence.
What are you reading this month to build your awareness of Black culture? Are you immersing in the African American experience by reading exclusively books about Black history or are you focusing on one book you’ve been wanting to read for a while? I’d love to chat with you in the comments below.
And if you want to view my videos for more on what I’m saying about these and other books, check out my YouTube channel: Runwright Reads
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