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21 Black Authors We’re Reading Right Now

Posted On  June 29, 2020
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It’s been over a month since the death of George Floyd. In that time, we’ve seen a heightened cultural awareness of how racism impacts our society. As protests move into their second month, employees across industries demand new policies and reforms, and as COVID-19 continues to disproportionately impact Black communities, it has become clear that we have a lot of work to do in the fight for systemic change.

At LRW, we have made a commitment to addressing our implicit biases, filling the gaps in our education, and promoting positive social change. Listening to and amplifying Black voices is a critical part of that process. That’s why we’re dedicating this year’s annual summer reading list to literature that explores various aspects of the Black experience. Here are just some of the books we’re reading this summer.

Essays:

Feel Free by Zadie Smith

I Don’t Want to Die Poor by Michael Arceneaux

Thick: And Other Essays by Tressie McMillan Cottom

Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women That a Movement Forgot by Mikki Kendall

Here for It: Or, How to Save Your Soul in America by R. Eric Thomas

Memoir:

Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, & So Much More by Janet Mock

Things That Make White People Uncomfortable by Michael Bennett and David Zirin

All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson

Brother, I’m Dying by Edwidge Danticat

Notes from a Young Black Chef by Kwame Onwuachi

Nonfiction:

A Black Women’s History of the United States by Daina Ramey Berry and Kali Nicole Gross

The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson

The Myth of Equality: Uncovering the Roots of Injustice and Privilege by Ken Wytsma

So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum

Fiction:

Real Life by Brandon Taylor

Difficult Women by Roxane Gay

No One Is Coming to Save Us by Stephanie Powell Watts

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead

Pride by Ibi Zoboi

The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin

Written by Trish Smyth
Marketing Manager
Trish is an LA-based writer and content specialist for LRW. She has a Linguistics degree from Georgetown University with a focus on sociolinguistics. She has worked in marketing and communications for seven years, building brands, producing content, and creating memorable brand experiences. When she’s not writing, Trish enjoys all the LA-approved fitness activities and reading.

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