Dear every single Black author who dropped a book today,
As an avid reader, I gracefully thank you for giving me material to make up the longest summer to be read (TBR) list in the history of summer TBRs. The wide variety of books that started off the month is not only compelling but absolutely beautiful. It’s amazing to see how many authors are embracing their characters and pouring unconditional love into the work they’re doing, whether it’s fiction or nonfiction, memoir or poetry, or even a smattering of young adult and new adult novels.
The young adult books this week encapsulate Black joy and love and pain. The long-awaited second novel from The Sun Is Also a Star author Nicola Yoon has a touch of magical realism mixed with ballroom dance competitions and a male protagonist who goes by one letter alone. Bethany C. Morrow gives us a literary conversation about literal Black Girl Magic, offering multiple points of view and storylines across two different novels.
We also really do appreciate a good mystery/thriller over here, and combined with 1920s Harlem Renaissance and a love befitting Pride Month, Dead Dead Girls by Nekesa Afia is a page-turning comedic mystery bound to have you wanting for more. Seven Days in June by Tia Williams follows two authors who haven’t seen each other in over a decade but have remained in communication through their published works, all the while pretending to be strangers.
Clint Smith’s How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America, is both an honoring and exposé of slavery’s legacy in America and how this nation is built upon the experiences, blood, sweat and tears of the formerly enslaved.
It’s only the second day of June and already there are narratives upon narratives that explore Black love, life, pain and joy to keep you occupied and engaged all summer long.