since i have a limited budget of both money and shelf space, i don’t often buy new books. so when i took a good look at my book collection, it was pretty obvious that there were a lot of voices that weren’t represented. i’ve got a decent selection of feminist and queer books (although a lot of those are from my university days, so i think i need to get into some newer works there too!) but overwhelmingly, the authors on my shelves are white.
starting with the discussions that began last year about racism in the making community, and carrying on into what’s happening now with the Black Lives Matter protests in the USA and worldwide, i’ve been trying hard to read and learn from more diverse voices. some of these books i’ve found the budget to buy and keep; most i was able to source from my local library (mostly by convincing them to buy the books that i wanted so i could borrow them, which means i’m diversifying their collection too!).
i wanted to share some of the books i’ve read/been reading, in case you were interested in looking into some of these titles yourself. the lists below are what i’ve read up to this point as well as some books that i have on order and will be reading next; as i work my way through more books i’ll add them here and keep this page as a work in progress.
at the moment the books i’m focusing on are those by Black authors; there’s a strong focus on books about anti-racism. but i think it’s also hugely important not just to read non-fiction and not just to read about racism, but to read fiction/poetry/essays etc from Black authors; to experience stories that aren’t your own, and to become immersed in other worlds that you didn’t know about before.
as i read more, i’ll add more to this page, so keep checking back! i’m planning to not just continue with works by Black authors, but by authors from other minority ethnic groups, queer and trans authors, disabled and neuroatypical authors, and so on.
Black authors (non-fiction):
- How to be an Anti-Racist – Ibram X. Kendi
- Natives – Akala
- Me and White Supremacy – Layla F. Saad
- Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People about Race – Reni Eddo-Lodge
- Trace – Lauret Savoy
- Your Silence Will Not Protect You – Audre Lorde
- Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fatphobia – Sabrina Strings
- The Body is not an Apology – Sonya Renee Taylor
Black authors (fiction):
- How Long Til Black Future Month? – N. K. Jemisin
- Under the Udala Trees – Chinelo Okparanta
- Freshwater – Akwaeke Emezi
- Girl, Woman, Other – Bernardine Evaristo
- The Water Dancer – Ta-Nehisi Coates
- Americanah – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
- The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls – Anissa Gray
- Stay With Me – Ayòbámi Adébáyò
- Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi
- What is not Yours is not Yours – Helen Oyeyemi