As we wrap up 2021, I thought I’d copy off Barrack Obama and share my book list, a combination of Trade and Indie books I read this year. This list is based on books I’ve read or am reading now. I missed a lot of hot releases reading for research, so I only got around to about twenty books this year, and not all of them were published in 2021. And for the sake of time, I will not talk about every book.
So heerree we go.
This list is in no particular order, but if it was, this would still be the number one read for me this year. Publishing a memoir is among many of my author goals, and the way this was structured is precisely what I have in mind. Cicely Tyson’s Just as I am is not only a memoir. It is a magnifying glass on 96 years of black history told through the eyes of someone who lived it in real-time. A perfect blend of personal testimony with the political and social climate of the times, a poetic proclamation to some of the most historical events of the 20th Century.
Listen, if you can get me to read your book and keep reading it or think about it so much when I am not reading it, I want to pick it up at my earliest convenience to finish, then you can make the top of my list. This book was hilarious and thought-provoking at the same time. It was also refreshing that the book was not too long and engaging enough to read in one sitting. I hadn’t done that in a while. I enjoyed it.
I read the first half of this book at the library while I was supposed to be reading Amanda’s new book. No shade to Gorman, but I had to let hers sit to the side a lil bit reading this here. I love Jasmine’s rawness. She is all fire and straightforwardness. When I got home, I bought my own copy.
For clarity, this is not a memoir. It is biography written by pop culture critic, essayist, literary editor, fiction writer, and music journalist Miles Marshall Lewis. I really like how he structured this, mixing pop culture, some hip-hop history leading up to Kendrick’s birth, and Lamar’s coming of age story.
Because I heard this poem recited first at the Presidential Inauguration, it’s so fun to read because Gorman’s voice is in my head. I can read this repeatedly because it’s short and inspiring.
I literally just got this book yesterday, but I had to put it on the list because I think Will is dope so I know this book will be entertaining. Looking forward to digging in.
This book is mad thick, so no, I have not finished reading it. What I have read so far is good, though, and I will be picking this back up again for sure.
The Queen V: Everything You Need to Know About Sex, Intimacy, and Down There Health Care by Dr. Jackie Walters
Ladies, listen. There are so many myths surrounding this here vajayjay of ours. Do yourself a favor and grab a copy of this book by Married to Medicine’s Jackie Walters. She’s an MD of Comprehensive Women’s OB/GYN, located in Duluth and Dunwoody, Georgia, and is a household name in the Atlanta area. If you know her from the show, the book reads in her voice, which is cool.
If you want to learn about how the US government systematically imposed residential segregation: with undisguised racial zoning; public housing that purposefully segregated previously mixed communities; subsidies for builders to create whites-only suburbs; tax exemptions for institutions that enforced segregation; and support for violent resistance to African Americans in white neighborhoods, this the one.
I enjoyed “traveling” with this author on his journey through Senegal, Mauritania, The Gambia, Guinea, and Guinea Bissau.
Chile. If you want a history of Karen’s behavior, babbyy. This the one.
I am not as invested in this one as I was in the first one, but I’m still enjoying it.
Capitalism and Slavery by Eric Williams (Research Book)
Ya’ll notice my nails got better in the latter part of the year? Cause this was this summer, and what in the messy nail polish is going on here, lol.
I had such high hopes for this book. Read my full review here.
She Wins (Indie)
I did not enjoy this book like I thought I would. I should have researched it more, but I judged it by its cover and title, both of which I think are awesome. But I’m gonna have to pass.
I’m Speaking Now: Black Women Share Their Truth in 101 Stories of Love, Courage, and Hope
A compelling anthology. Highly recommended.
The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story by Nikole Hannah-Jones
The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris
Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas
Feeding the Soul by Tabitha Brown
You Got Anything Stronger? by Gabrielle Union