📚BHM Reading List

As Black History Month winds down, LOF would like to share a few of the many books by black authors we recommend reading. Narrowing the list to five was challenging, but we figured an exhaustive list would take forever to compile, so here is a small sample of books we have loved and learned from that we would like to share in case you’ve missed them:

  1. Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue. This delightful novel about an immigrant named Jende Jonga from Camaroon who brings his family to the United States in search of the American dream. The lives they find here are not at all what they had imagined. Seeing their New York City adventures through Jende’s eyes was an unforgettable and enjoyable experience.
  2. Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson. This award-winning, biographical account of the author’s experience as a young black lawyer in Alabama is an unbelievable story of tenacity in standing up for the poor and wrongly condemned victims of the face of a woefully inadequate and unfair legal system.
  3. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. Written by an incredibly talented young author, this novel grabs you from the get-go and moves through an explosive set of circumstances that rip apart the lives of its characters in irreparable ways. Told from the point of view of a 16-year-old girl, the story moves quickly. The characters and events are layered and multifaceted, dealing with very current and topical events and revealing many truths about U.S. society.
  4. We Should All Be Feminists by Chimimanda Ngozi Adichie. This brief manifesto presents a clear, modern and well-thought-out definition of feminism and why everyone–both male and female–should embrace it. Originally based on her TEDx talk on this subject, the written account draws on her upbringing in Nigeria and reads like poetry.
  5. The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin. Written in the form of two letters, this work is essentially an extended and deeply personal treatise against racism. It’s devastatingly sad and beautiful at the same time, arguing passionately but without bitterness in Baldwin’s utterly unique and compassionate style. Actually, read any of his books. They’re astounding.

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