Are you looking to add a touch of diversity and richness to your reading habits? Exploring books authored by Black writers is a fantastic way to broaden your literary horizons and gain unique perspectives on life, culture, and history. In this blog post, we'll delve into my current To-Be-Read (TBR) list, featuring captivating titles such as Kindred, Black Cake, The Sugar Jar, The Housemaid, and Never Split the Difference: Negotiate as if Your Life Depends on It. Additionally, we'll discuss how to embrace reading as a hobby and highlight a few prominent Black authors whose works are definitely worth exploring.
1. Kindred by Octavia E. Butler
Dana, a modern Black woman, is inexplicably transported to the antebellum South. As she navigates the perils of slavery and racism, she forms an unexpected connection with her white ancestor, Rufus. Octavia E. Butler's groundbreaking novel blends science fiction with historical fiction, offering a thought-provoking exploration of race, identity, and the haunting legacy of America's past.
2. Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson
In this collection of interconnected short stories, Charmaine Wilkerson crafts a vivid narrative that spans continents and generations. She weaves together the lives of characters from different walks of life, exploring themes of family, migration, and the intricate web of human connections.
3. The Sugar Jar: Create Boundaries, Embrace Self-Healing, and Enjoy the Sweet Things in Life
A radical approach to setting boundaries and protecting your energy, rich with tools for self-healing. Imagine a glass jar filled with sugar on a kitchen counter. You are the jar, and the sugar is your energy. If the jar has no lid, people can come in and take as much sugar as they want. Sometimes, they spill that sugar all over. You may try to refill your jar—replenish your energy—through self-care, but because there is no a lid—no protective boundary—you cannot control how much of your vital life force is being drained. The Sugar Jar metaphor is a powerful teaching tool that wellness advocate and coach Yasmine Cheyenne has successfully used with her clients. Now, in her debut book, she makes it available to everyone.
4. The Housemaid by Frieda McFadden
#1 Amazon bestselling author Freida McFadden is a practicing physician specializing in brain injury who has penned multiple Kindle bestselling psychological thrillers and medical humor novels. She lives with her family and black cat in a centuries-old three-story home overlooking the ocean, with staircases that creak and moan with each step, and nobody could hear you if you scream. Unless you scream really loudly, maybe
5. Never Split the Difference: Negotiate as if Your Life Depends on It by Chris Voss
While not authored by a Black writer, this book is a valuable addition to your TBR list. Chris Voss, a former FBI hostage negotiator, shares insights into effective communication and negotiation techniques. These skills are crucial for both personal and professional growth, allowing you to navigate life's challenges with confidence.
Getting Into Reading as a Hobby
If you're new to the world of reading or aiming to reignite your reading habit, here are a few tips to help you get started:
Set Realistic Goals: Begin with achievable reading goals, such as completing a book every month. As you build your reading muscle, you can gradually increase your reading pace.
Create a Comfortable Reading Space: Designate a cozy nook where you can escape into the pages of a book without distractions.
Diversify Your Selection: Embrace various genres, themes, and author backgrounds. Reading a mix of fiction, non-fiction, and culturally diverse works will keep your reading experience engaging.
Set Aside Time: Dedicate a specific time each day for reading. Whether it's during your morning coffee or before bedtime, consistency will help solidify reading as a habit.
Exploring Black Authors
To further enrich your reading journey, consider exploring the works of these influential Black authors:
Toni Morrison: Dive into the captivating narratives of Morrison, whose novels such as Beloved and Song of Solomon explore the African American experience with profound insight.
James Baldwin: Explore Baldwin's thought-provoking essays like The Fire Next Time and novels like Go Tell It on the Mountain, which delve into themes of race, identity, and society.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Adichie's novels like Half of a Yellow Sun and Americanah offer powerful perspectives on identity, culture, and globalization.
Ta-Nehisi Coates: Coates' works like Between the World and Me and The Water Dancer provide incisive commentary on race and history in America.
Dive into these authors' books to gain a deeper understanding of the diverse stories and perspectives that enrich the world of literature.
As you embark on your journey through these compelling titles and authors, remember that reading is not just a pastime but a gateway to understanding, empathy, and personal growth. So, set aside some time, curl up with a book, and let your imagination take flight. Happy reading!