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Five Books by Black Authors to Read this Summer

By August 6, 2021Thank God Im Natural

Summer is here! What better way to relax this summer than to curl up with a good book on the beach, at a picnic by the lake or simply relaxing at home? These black authors have books that will occupy your summer with stories real and fictitious to transport you into their worlds as you soak up the summer sun.


Chasing Black Butterflies



Experiencing sexual abuse at an early age, Angie became a runaway who bounced from one troubled home to another. At times, she found herself homeless and having to sleep with older men for food and shelter. Feeling lost, with thoughts of suicide, she was headed down a self-destructive path when she chose to turn her life over to God but ended up in the hands of a controlling, abusive pimp. Ultimately, Angie escaped and began her journey of living happily ever after. But this is no fairytale. Her past came back to haunt her, and she would have to learn to face her demons head-on.


23 A Novel By A. R Shaw



While growing up during the late-1980s on the South Side of Chicago, Minus Hall quickly learns what is expected in his home as well as the role that he must play while in the streets. Social expectations of living on the South Side creates a desire in him that can only be quenched when he receives what he thinks is essential, a new pair of the latest 23s (Air Jordans). With hard work and effort, Minus s dream is realized. However, Minus soon discovers how desire, achievement, and retaliation can produce a chain of events that could cost him his life or change him forever.

Concrete Rose


International phenomenon Angie Thomas revisits Garden Heights seventeen years before the events of The Hate U Give in this searing and poignant exploration of Black boyhood and manhood.

If there’s one thing seventeen-year-old Maverick Carter knows, it’s that a real man takes care of his family. As the son of a former gang legend, Mav does that the only way he knows how: dealing for the King Lords. With this money he can help his mom, who works two jobs while his dad’s in prison.

Life’s not perfect, but with a fly girlfriend and a cousin who always has his back, Mav’s got everything under control.

Until, that is, Maverick finds out he’s a father.


Aftershocks: A Memoir



In the tradition of The Glass Castle, this “gorgeous” (The New York Times, Editors’ Choice) and deeply felt memoir from Whiting Award winner Nadia Owusu tells the “incredible story” (Malala Yousafzai) about the push and pull of belonging, the seismic emotional toll of family secrets, and the heart it takes to pull through.


The Kindest Lie



The Kindest Lie is a layered, complex exploration of race and class.” —The Washington Post

A promise could betray you.

It’s 2008, and the inauguration of President Barack Obama ushers in a new kind of hope. In Chicago, Ruth Tuttle, an Ivy-League educated Black engineer, is married to a kind and successful man. He’s eager to start a family, but Ruth is uncertain. She has never gotten over the baby she gave birth to—and was forced to leave behind—when she was a teenager. She had promised her family she’d never look back, but Ruth knows that to move forward, she must make peace with the past.


Which of these book will you be checking out this summer?