#ReadingBlackout: 28 Books to Read This Black History Month

#ReadingBlackout: 28 Books to Read This Black History Month

Books to Read This Black History Month

Black History Month is here, and we recommend picking up books by black authors to celebrate. Last year we participated in #readingblackout, a movement started by BookTuber Denise D. Cooper, and this year we’re upholding the tradition! Need some help getting started? Here are some of Bookish’s favorite books to read this Black History Month by black authors from all genres.

Check out last year’s list for even more great reads!

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Tayari Jones’ novel tells the heartbreaking story of a couple whose lives change forever when the husband is convicted of a crime he did not commit. This book will haunt readers long after they’ve finished it.

How Long ’til Black Future Month? by N. K. Jemisin

N.K. Jemisin, the first writer to ever win the Hugo Award for best novel three years in a row, returns with a collection of short stories that examine modern society through the lens of speculative fiction.

Becoming by Michelle Obama

Becoming is easily the buzziest memoir to come out in the last year. In it, former First Lady Michelle Obama writes about her inspiring life and incredible accomplishments.

Intercepted by Alexa Martin

Marlee swears off athletes after being dumped by her NFL-star boyfriend, but Gavin, the team’s new quarterback, is determined to change her mind.

Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke

Attica Locke’s Bluebird, Bluebird takes readers to Lark, Texas, where two people have recently been murdered. Darren Mathews is on the case and will have to navigate small-town racial tensions in the process.

Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann

In this YA novel, asexual teen Alice decides she’s done with relationships after a breakup with her girlfriend. But she starts to reconsider after she meets Takumi, her coworker at the library. Earlier this year, Claire Kann visited Bookish to talk about writing for teens here.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Cora is a slave on a plantation in Georgia in Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Then, she meets Caesar who convinces her to escape with him using the Underground Railroad.

Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet by Ta-Nehisi Coates, illustrated by Brian Stelfreeze

If you walked out of Marvel’s Black Panther movie craving more of the world of Wakanda, then you’ll want to follow T’Challa’s adventures in this comic series.

When They Call You a Terrorist by Patrisse Khan-Cullors and asha bandele

When They Call You a Terrorist narrates the beginnings of the Black Lives Matter movement and lets readers meet the founding members.

Tempest by Beverly Jenkins

Romance icon Beverly Jenkins takes readers to the Old West in this tale of a mail-order bride who has a rocky first meeting with her husband-to-be.

Devil In a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley

Travel to 1940s Los Angeles in Walter Mosley’s Devil In a Blue Dress, where a veteran named Easy Rawlins is tasked with finding a woman named Daphne Monet.

Pride by Ibi Zoboi

This YA novel draws inspiration from Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and transports reader to Bushwick where an Afro-Latino poet gets off on the wrong foot with her new neighbor.

Beloved by Toni Morrison

This classic novel introduces readers to Sethe, a former slave whose every waking moment is affected by the horrors she experienced at Sweet Home. Beloved won the Pulitzer Prize in 1988.

An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

In this science fiction novel, a spaceship bound for a distant world is overtaken by a white supremacist cult and the passengers are rigidly segregated. The plot follows Aster’s journey to take them down.

We Are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby

This memoir will make you think and also make you chuckle. In it, Samantha Irby writes about subjects as varied as Costco runs, The Bachelorette, and her family.

A Girl Like Her by Talia Hibbert

Geeky heroine Ruth keeps her head down in her small town until her neighbor Evan starts to draw her out of her shell.

Hollywood Homicide by Kellye Garrett

Dive into the world of Hollywood in this murder mystery. Dayna Anderson watches a deadly hit-and-run accident, and decides to help track down the perpetrator. She gets far more than she bargained for.

A Blade So Black by L.L. McKinney

You’ve got a very important date with this YA book inspired by Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Follow Alice from Atlanta, GA to a world where she learns to battle monsters.

Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward

This novel takes readers to Bois Sauvage, Mississippi in the days leading up to Hurricane Katrina as four siblings struggle to prepare. Salvage the Bones won the National Book Award in 2011.

Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor

This novel by award-winning author Nnedi Okorafor follows Onyesonwu, who is destined to end the genocide of her people.

Heavy by Kiese Laymon

In Heavy, Kiese Laymon writes about his upbringing in Jackson, Mississippi, his relationship with his mother, and the impact that sexual abuse had on his journey to adulthood.

Miles Morales by Jason Reynolds

Fans of the dynamic and gorgeous Into the Spider-Verse won’t want to miss this YA novel about Miles at a moment when he starts to question whether or not he’s meant to be a superhero.

Going Nowhere Fast by Gar Anthony Haywood

Joe and Dottie Loudermilk go on a road trip that’s anything but relaxing in this mystery. They return to their Airstream after a day of sightseeing, only to find a dead body in the trailer and their son holding a gun.

Love in Catalina Cove by Brenda Jackson

After inheriting her aunt’s B&B, Vashti leaves New York and returns home to Louisiana, where she begins to fall for the local sheriff. Author Brenda Jackson rounded up some of her favorite second-chance romances for us here.

The Sellout by Paul Beatty

In 2016, Paul Beatty’s The Sellout won both the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. The story follows a young man who finds himself arguing before the Supreme Court.

Dear Martin by Nic Stone

In this powerful YA novel, a black teen writes letters to the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. After being wrongfully arrested, Justyce hopes the letters may help him understand his place in a world where he’s treated differently because of his skin color.

Negroland by Margo Jefferson

Margo Jefferson’s important memoir dissects issues of both class and race through the lens of Jefferson’s own upbringing in an upper-class part of black society in Chicago.

The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton

This YA fantasy takes readers to a city where beauty is controlled by the Belles, and Camellia Beauregard learns the hard way that life at the palace isn’t as glamorous as it seems.


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