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Americanah by Ifemelu and Obinze are young and in love when they depart military-ruled Nigeria for the West. Beautiful, self-assured Ifemelu heads for America, where despite her academic success, she is forced to grapple with what it means to be black for the first time. Quiet, thoughtful Obinze had hoped to join her, but with post-9/11 America closed to him, he instead plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Fifteen years later, they reunite in a newly democratic Nigeria, and reignite their passion—for each other and for their homeland.
Call Number: 823.92 A235 AME
Publication Date: 2013-05-14
Friday Black by "An excitement and a wonder: strange, crazed, urgent and funny ... The wildly talented Adjei-Brenyah has made these edgy tales immensely charming, via his resolute, heartful, immensely likeable narrators, capable of seeing the world as blessed and cursed at once."--George Saunders "This book is dark and captivating and essential ... A call to arms and a condemnation. Adjei-Brenyah offers powerful prose as parable. The writing in this outstanding collection will make you hurt and demand your hope. Read this book." -- Roxane Gay A piercingly raw debut story collection from a young writer with an explosive voice; a treacherously surreal, and, at times, heartbreakingly satirical look at what it's like to be young and black in America. From the start of this extraordinary debut, Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah's writing will grab you, haunt you, enrage and invigorate you. By placing ordinary characters in extraordinary situations, Adjei-Brenyah reveals the violence, injustice, and painful absurdities that black men and women contend with every day in this country. These stories tackle urgent instances of racism and cultural unrest, and explore the many ways we fight for humanity in an unforgiving world. In "The Finkelstein Five," Adjei-Brenyah gives us an unforgettable reckoning of the brutal prejudice of our justice system. In "Zimmer Land," we see a far-too-easy-to-believe imagining of racism as sport. And "Friday Black" and "How to Sell a Jacket as Told by Ice King" show the horrors of consumerism and the toll it takes on us all. Entirely fresh in its style and perspective, and sure to appeal to fans of Colson Whitehead, Marlon James, and George Saunders, Friday Black confronts readers with a complicated, insistent, wrenching chorus of emotions, the final note of which, remarkably, is hope.
A treacherously surreal, and, at times, heartbreakingly satirical look at what it's like to be young and black in America. By placing ordinary characters in extraordinary situations, Adjei-Brenyah reveals the violence, injustice, and painful absurdities that black men and women contend with every day in this country. Readers are left with a complicated, insistent, wrenching chorus of emotions, the final note of which, remarkably, is hope.
Call Number: 813.6 A23F
Publication Date: 2018-10-23
Another Country by James Baldwin's Another Country is a major novel in every sense--a long, passionate, sometimes brutal, often sardonic, always intense book.... Another Country is America. The scene is New York--from Greenwich Village to Harlem--and all the places, fashionable and sordid, that lie between. The city looms over the events of a crucial year in the lives of eight major characters whose tale is told in this remarkable novel. In Another Country, all lines of sex and color are erased, all barriers are broken, all conformity is shattered. What remains are the shocking truths, sometimes beautiful, sometimes frightening--the reality of human experience stretched to its limits. James Baldwin writes with unequalled honesty about people who shake off the safe life in a land where at times it seems there is no hope. Another Country is an extraordinary novel by an already acknowledged spokesman for our age, written out of intense fury, rage, and above all, great compassion, about timeless questions that demand explanations.
Call Number: 813.54 B181A
Publication Date: 1992-12-01
If Beale Street Could Talk by In this honest and stunning novel, Baldwin has given America a moving story of love in the face of injustice. In a love story that evokes the blues, where passion and sadness are inevitably intertwined, Baldwin creates two characters so alive and profoundly realized that they are unforgettably ingrained in the American psyche.
Call Number: 813.54 B181 IF
Publication Date: 2006-10-10
Tell Me How Long the Train's Been Gone by At the height of his theatrical career, the actor Leo Proudhammer is nearly felled by a heart attack. As he hovers between life and death, Baldwin shows the choices that have made him enviably famous and terrifyingly vulnerable. It is the life story of Leo Proudhammer, a black American actor at the peak of his career; it is the story of a man who realizes at a critical moment in his life that he may be required not merely to survive history but to change it.
Call Number: 813.5 B18T
Publication Date: 1998-02-17
Marie or, Slavery in the United States by Gustave de Beaumont's 1835 work, Marie, or Slavery in the United States is structured as a fascinating essay on race interwoven with a novel. It is the story of socially forbidden love between an idealistic young Frenchman and an apparently white American woman with African ancestry. The couple's idealism fades as they repeatedly face racial prejudice and violence, and are eventually forced to seek shelter among exiled Cherokee people. Notable as the first abolitionist novel to focus on racial prejudice rather than bondage as a social evil, Beaumont's work was also the first to link prejudice against Native Americans to prejudice against blacks. This translation, with a new introduction by Gerard Fergerson, provides modern readers with interesting insights into the inconsistencies and injustices of democratic Jacksonian society.
Call Number: 973.04 B379 MAR
Publication Date: 1999-01-26
Chronicles of a Slave Girl by This is the rather unique saga of Mary, the beautiful mulatto woman, who has been led to believe that because of her mixed blood, fair complexion, and straight hair, she has an advantage over "dem Afreecans" of less stature. Then, after her master beats her to within an inch of her life, threatens to sell her unborn child, and sells her fiancee on their wedding day, Mary begins to see some merit in what the field hands have to say and begins plotting her escape.
Call Number: 813.52 B87C
Publication Date: 2013-02-05
Harlem Blues by In the tradition of Langston Hughes's Simple Speaks His Mind, Harlem Blues continues to glance at the myriad of everyday Black voices that make up America's Black Mecca. Recounted from the mouth of William Wadsworth Longfellow better know as Willie the Wino, we are introduced to and come to know a myriad of personalities from the preacher and the prostitute to Saul the little Jewish butcher and Monica his African queen.
Call Number: 813.52 B87H
Publication Date: 2013-02-05
Kindred by Dana, a modern black woman, is celebrating her twenty-sixth birthday with her new husband when she is snatched abruptly from her home in California and transported to the antebellum South. Rufus, the white son of a plantation owner, is drowning, and Dana has been summoned to save him. Dana is drawn back repeatedly through time to the slave quarters, and each time the stay grows longer, more arduous, and more dangerous until it is uncertain whether or not Dana's life will end, long before it has a chance to begin.
Call Number: 813.54 B986 KIN
Publication Date: 2004-02-01
Parable of the Sower by In 2025 California, an eighteen-year-old African American woman, suffering from a hereditary trait that causes her to feel others' pain as well as her own, flees northward from her small community and its desperate savages.
Call Number: 813.54 B98P
Publication Date: 2000-01-01
The Water Dancer by Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage--and lost his mother and all memory of her when he was a child--but he is also gifted with a mysterious power. Hiram almost drowns when he crashes a carriage into a river, but is saved from the depths by a force he doesn't understand, a blue light that lifts him up and lands him a mile away. This strange brush with death forces a new urgency on Hiram's private rebellion. Spurred on by his improvised plantation family, Thena, his chosen mother, a woman of few words and many secrets, and Sophia, a young woman fighting her own war even as she and Hiram fall in love, he becomes determined to escape the only home he's ever known. So begins an unexpected journey into the covert war on slavery that takes Hiram from the corrupt grandeur of Virginia's proud plantations to desperate guerrilla cells in the wilderness, from the coffin of the deep South to dangerously utopic movements in the North. Even as he's enlisted in the underground war between slavers and the enslaved, all Hiram wants is to return to the Walker Plantation to free the family he left behind--but to do so, he must first master his magical gift and reconstruct the story of his greatest loss. This is a bracingly original vision of the world of slavery, written with the narrative force of a great adventure. Driven by the author's bold imagination and striking ability to bring readers deep into the interior lives of his brilliantly rendered characters, The Water Dancer is the story of America's oldest struggle--the struggle to tell the truth--from one of our most exciting thinkers and beautiful writers.
Call Number: 813.6 C65W
Publication Date: 2019-09-24
The Girl with the Louding Voice by A powerful, emotional debut novel told in the unforgettable voice of a young Nigerian woman who is trapped in a life of servitude but determined to get an education so that she can escape and choose her own future. Adunni is a fourteen-year-old Nigerian girl who knows what she wants: an education. This, her mother has told her, is the only way to get a "louding voice"--the ability to speak for herself and decide her own future. But instead, Adunni's father sells her to be the third wife of a local man who is eager for her to bear him a son and heir. When Adunni runs away to the city, hoping to make a better life, she finds that the only other option before her is servitude to a wealthy family. As a yielding daughter, a subservient wife, and a powerless slave, Adunni is told, by words and deeds, that she is nothing. But while misfortunes might muffle her voice for a time, they cannot mute it. And when she realizes that she must stand up not only for herself, but for other girls, for the ones who came before her and were lost, and for the next girls, who will inevitably follow; she finds the resolve to speak, however she can--in a whisper, in song, in broken English--until she is heard.
Call Number: 823.92 D21G
Publication Date: 2020-02-04
Invisible Man by A first novel by an unknown writer, it remained on the bestseller list for sixteen weeks, won the National Book Award for fiction, and established Ralph Ellison as one of the key writers of the century. The nameless narrator of the novel describes growing up in a black community in the South, attending a Negro college from which he is expelled, moving to New York and becoming the chief spokesman of the Harlem branch of "the Brotherhood", and retreating amid violence and confusion to the basement lair of the Invisible Man he imagines himself to be. The book is a passionate and witty tour de force of style, strongly influenced by T.S. Eliot's The Waste Land, Joyce, and Dostoevsky.
Call Number: 813.54 E47 INV
Publication Date: 1995-03-14
The Walls of Jericho by Lawyer Ralph Merritt buys a house in a white neighborhood bordering Harlem. In their reactions to Merritt and to one another, Fishers' characters--including the prejudiced Miss Cramp who 'takes on causes the way sticky tape picks up lint, ' Merritt's housekeeper Linda, and Shine, his piano mover--provide an invaluable view of the social and philosophical milieu of the times.Thematically, Fisher focuses on the idea of black unity and discovery of the self.
Call Number: 813.52 F53W
Publication Date: 1900-01-01
A Lesson Before Dying by From the author of, A Gathering of Old Men and The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman comes a deep and compassionate novel. Grant Wiggins, a college-educated man returns to 1940s Cajun, he visits and forms an unlikely bond with Jefferson, a young Black man convicted of murder and sentenced to death, for a crime he didn't commit. Together they come to understand the heroism of resisting. Best Books for Young Teen Readers. In the 1940s in rural Louisiana, an uneducated African American man is sentenced to die for a crime he was incapable of committing.
Call Number: 813.54 G142L
Publication Date: 1997-09-28
The Norton Anthology of African American Literature by Collaborating on The Norton Anthology of African American Literature, editors Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Nellie Y. McKay have compiled what may be the definitive collection of its kind. Organized chronologically, the massive work gathers writings from six periods of black history: slavery and freedom; Reconstruction; the Harlem Renaissance; Realism, Naturalism and Modernism; the Black Arts Movement and the period since the 1970s. The work begins with the vernacular tradition of spirituals, gospel and the blues; continues through work songs, jazz and rap; ranges through sermons and folktales; and embraces letters and journals, poetry, short fiction, novels, autobiography and drama.
Call Number: 810.8089 G259N V. 1
Publication Date: 2014-03-28
The Norton Anthology of African American Literature by The much-anticipated Third Edition brings together the work of 140 writers from 1746 to the present writing in all genres, as well as performers of vernacular forms―from spirituals and sermons to jazz and hip hop. Fresh scholarship, new visuals and media, and new selections―with an emphasis on contemporary writers―combine to make The Norton Anthology of African American Literature an even better teaching tool for instructors and an unmatched value for students.
Call Number: 810.8089 G259N V. 2
Publication Date: 2014-03-31
Homegoing by Two half sisters, Effia and Esi, unknown to each other, are born into two different tribal villages in 18th century Ghana. Effia will be married off to an English colonial, and will live in comfort in the sprawling, palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle, raising half-caste children who will be sent abroad to be educated in England before returning to the Gold Coast to serve as administrators of the Empire. Her sister, Esi, will be imprisoned beneath Effia in the Castle's women's dungeon, and then shipped off on a boat bound for America, where she will be sold into slavery. Stretching from the tribal wars of Ghana to slavery and Civil War in America, from the coal mines in the north to the Great Migration to the streets of 20th century Harlem, Yaa Gyasi's has written a modern masterpiece, a novel that moves through histories and geographies and--with outstanding economy and force--captures the troubled spirit of our own nation.
Call Number: 813.6 GYA
Publication Date: 2016-06-07
The Best Short Stories by Negro Writers by This anthology includes short stories by the following writers: Alston Anderson, James Baldwin, Lebert Bethune, Robert Boles, Arna Bontemps, Gwendolyn Brooks, Frank London Brown, Charles W. Chesnutt, Alice Childress, John Henrik Clarke, Cyrus Colter, Pearl Crayton, Owen Dodson, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Katherine Dunham, Junius Edwards, Ralph Ellison, Ronald Fair, Rudolph Fisher, Ernest J. Gaines, Chester B. Himes, Langston Hughes, Kristin Hunter, Zora Neale Hurston, Clifford Vincent Johnson, William Melvin Kelley, John Oliver Killens, Woodie King, Jr., Sylvester Leaks, Paule Marshall, R.J. Meaddough III, Ronald Milner, Willard Motley, Lindsay Patterson, Ted Poston, Conrad Kent Rivers, Charlie Russell, Mike Thelwell, Jean Toomer, Mary Elizabeth Vroman, Alice Walker, Eric Walrond, Dorothy West, John A. Williams, Charles Wright, Richard Wright, and Frank Yerby.
Call Number: 813.008 H893B
Publication Date: 1969-02-01
The Plays to 1942 by Langston Hughes is least known for his theatrical endeavors, yet his attention to the theater was lifelong. His love of the stage began in childhood, and from the late 1920s on he was continually writing plays, for black community theater, for theater companies he established himself, and for the Broadway and off-Broadway stage. His early plays endeavor to provide "authentic" representations of African American life, both to counter and correct the stereotypical stage portrayals of African Americans in white theater and to provide suitable plays for black theater companies hungry for scripts that would entertain and challenge black audiences.
Volume 5 of The Collected Works of Langston Hughes includes the plays Hughes wrote between 1930 and 1942, alone and in collaboration. Almost all the plays were performed during the same period; a few have never seen the stage, but are included because they indicate the range of Hughes's artistic and political concerns. Because very few of the plays in this volume have been previously published, they disclose a side of Langston Hughes's artistry that is virtually unknown. The collection greatly expands our understanding of the Hughes legacy, and makes us rethink the history of African American theater.
Call Number: 818.5209 H893C
Publication Date: 2002-03-01
The Short Stories by For the first time in many years, Langston Hughes's published collections of stories are now available in a single book. Included in this volume are: Ways of White Folks, originally published in 1934; Laughing to Keep from Crying, originally published in 1952; and additional stories from Something in Common and Other Stories, originally published in 1963; as well as previously uncollected stories.
These fictions, carefully crafted in the language Hughes loved, manifest the many themes for which he is best known. We meet and come to know many characters--black and white, young and old, men and women—all as believable as our own families, friends, and acquaintances. Hughes's stories portray people as they actually are: a mixture of good, bad, and much in-between.
In these short stories, as in the Simple stories, the reader enjoys Hughes's humor and irony. The stories show us his inclination to mock himself and his beloved people, as much as he ridicules the flaws of those who belittle his race. His genuine characters interact and realistically bring to life this era of America's past. By maintaining the form and format of the original story collections, this volume presents Hughes's stories as he wanted them to be read. This volume will be an invaluable addition to the library of anyone interested in African American literature generally and the fiction of Langston Hughes specifically.
Call Number: 818.5209 H893CO
Publication Date: 2002-07-01
The Ways of White Folks by One of the most important writers to emerge from the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes is best known as a poet, but these stories showcase his talent as a lively storyteller. His work blends elements of blues and jazz, speech and song, into a triumphant and wholly original idiom.
Stories included in this collection:
"Slave on the Block"
"A Good Job Gone"
"Rejuvenation Through Joy"
"The Blues I'm Playing"
"Poor Little Black Fellow"
"Mother and Child"
"One Christmas Eve"
"Father and Son"
Call Number: 813.52 H893 WAY
Publication Date: 1990-09-12
How Long 'til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin is one of the most powerful and acclaimed speculative fiction authors of our time. In the first collection of her evocative short fiction, Jemisin equally challenges and delights readers with thought-provoking narratives of destruction, rebirth, and redemption. In these stories, Jemisin sharply examines modern society, infusing magic into the mundane, and drawing deft parallels in the fantasy realms of her imagination. Dragons and hateful spirits haunt the flooded streets of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In a parallel universe, a Utopian society watches our world, trying to learn from our mistakes. A black mother in the Jim Crow South must save her daughter from a fey offering impossible promises. And in the Hugo award-nominated short story "The City Born Great," a young street kid fights to give birth to an old metropolis's soul.
Call Number: 813.6 J49H
Publication Date: 2018-11-27
An American Marriage by Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy’s time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.
This stirring love story is a profoundly insightful look into the hearts and minds of three people who are at once bound and separated by forces beyond their control. An American Marriage is a masterpiece of storytelling, an intimate look deep into the souls of people who must reckon with the past while moving forward—with hope and pain—into the future.
Call Number: 813.6 J76A
Publication Date: 2018-02-06
The Secret Life of Bees by Set in South Carolina in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed. When Lily's fierce-hearted black "stand-in mother," Rosaleen, insults three of the deepest racists in town, Lily decides to spring them both free. They escape to Tiburon, South Carolina--a town that holds the secret to her mother's past. Taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters, Lily is introduced to their mesmerizing world of bees and honey, and the Black Madonna. This is a remarkable novel about divine female power, a story women will share and pass on to their daughters for years to come.
Call Number: 813.54 K46S
Publication Date: 2003-01-28
Bluebird, Bluebird by When it comes to law and order, East Texas plays by its own rules--a fact that Darren Mathews, a black Texas Ranger, knows all too well. Deeply ambivalent about growing up black in the lone star state, he was the first in his family to get as far away from Texas as he could. Until duty called him home. When his allegiance to his roots puts his job in jeopardy, he travels up Highway 59 to the small town of Lark, where two murders--a black lawyer from Chicago and a local white woman--have stirred up a hornet's nest of resentment. Darren must solve the crimes--and save himself in the process--before Lark's long-simmering racial fault lines erupt. A rural noir suffused with the unique music, color, and nuance of East Texas, Bluebird, Bluebird is an exhilarating, timely novel about the collision of race and justice in America.
Call Number: 813.6 L81B
Publication Date: 2018-08-28
Beloved by Sethe, its protagonist, was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. And Sethe’s new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved. Filled with bitter poetry and suspense as taut as a rope, Beloved is a towering achievement.
Call Number: 813.54 M875B
Publication Date: 1987-08-12
The Bluest Eye by Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl, prays every day for beauty. Mocked by other children for the dark skin, curly hair, and brown eyes that set her apart, she yearns for normalcy, for the blond hair and blue eyes that she believes will allow her to finally fit in. Yet as her dream grows more fervent, her life slowly starts to disintegrate in the face of adversity and strife. A powerful examination of our obsession with beauty and conformity, Toni Morrison’s virtuosic first novel asks powerful questions about race, class, and gender with the subtlety and grace that have always characterized her writing.
Call Number: 813.54 M875BL
Publication Date: 1994-09-01
God Help the Child by Spare and unsparing, God Help the Child, the first novel by Toni Morrison to be set in our current moment, weaves a tale about the way the sufferings of childhood can shape, and misshape, the life of the adult. At the center: a young woman who calls herself Bride, whose stunning blue-black skin is only one element of her beauty, her boldness and confidence, her success in life, but which caused her light-skinned mother to deny her even the simplest forms of love. There is Booker, the man Bride loves, and loses to anger. Rain, the mysterious white child with whom she crosses paths. And finally, Bride's mother herself, Sweetness, who takes a lifetime to come to understand that what you do to children matters. And they might never forget. A fierce and provocative novel that adds a new dimension to the matchless oeuvre of Toni Morrison.
Call Number: 813.54 M882 GOD
Publication Date: 2015-04-21
Paradise by “They shoot the white girl first. With the rest they can take their time.” So begins Toni Morrison’s Paradise, which opens with a horrifying scene of mass violence and chronicles its genesis in an all-black small town in rural Oklahoma. Founded by the descendants of freed slaves and survivors in exodus from a hostile world, the patriarchal community of Ruby is built on righteousness, rigidly enforced moral law, and fear. But seventeen miles away, another group of exiles has gathered in a promised land of their own. And it is upon these women in flight from death and despair that nine male citizens of Ruby will lay their pain, their terror, and their murderous rage.
Call Number: 813.54 M875PA
Publication Date: 1997-12-24
Song of Solomon by Milkman Dead was born shortly after a neighborhood eccentric hurled himself off a rooftop in a vain attempt at flight. For the rest of his life he, too, will be trying to fly. With this brilliantly imagined novel, Toni Morrison transfigures the coming-of-age story as audaciously as Saul Bellow or Gabriel García Márquez. As she follows Milkman from his rustbelt city to the place of his family’s origins, Morrison introduces an entire cast of strivers and seeresses, liars and assassins, the inhabitants of a fully realized black world.
Call Number: 813.54 M875S
Publication Date: 1977-08-12
Wolf Whistle by In WOLF WHISTLE, Lewis Nordan unleashes the hellhounds of his prodigious imagination on one of the most notorious racial killings of the century, the Emmett Till murder. Soon we're on a magical mystery tour of the Southern psyche of the mid-1950s and the dawning of guilt and recognition in a whole generation of white Southerners. "An immense and wall-shattering display of talent. WOLF WHISTLE will help usher Lewis Nordan into the Hall of Fame of American Letters."--Randall Kenan, The Nation.
Call Number: 813.54 N82W
Publication Date: 2003-10-05
Small Great Things by This stunning new novel is Jodi Picoult at her finest--complete with unflinching insights, richly layered characters, and a page-turning plot with a gripping moral dilemma at its heart. Ruth Jefferson is a labor and delivery nurse at a Connecticut hospital with more than twenty years' experience. During her shift, Ruth begins a routine checkup on a newborn, only to be told a few minutes later that she's been reassigned to another patient. The parents are white supremacists and don't want Ruth, who is African American, to touch their child. The hospital complies with their request, but the next day, the baby goes into cardiac distress while Ruth is alone in the nursery. Does she obey orders or does she intervene? Ruth hesitates before performing CPR and, as a result, is charged with a serious crime. Kennedy McQuarrie, a white public defender, takes her case but gives unexpected advice: Kennedy insists that mentioning race in the courtroom is not a winning strategy. Conflicted by Kennedy's counsel, Ruth tries to keep life as normal as possible for her family--especially her teenage son--as the case becomes a media sensation. As the trial moves forward, Ruth and Kennedy must gain each other's trust, and come to see that what they've been taught their whole lives about others--and themselves--might be wrong. With incredible empathy, intelligence, and candor, Jodi Picoult tackles race, privilege, prejudice, justice, and compassion--and doesn't offer easy answers. Small Great Things is a remarkable achievement from a writer at the top of her game. Praise for Jodi Picoult's Leaving Time "A riveting drama."--Us Weekly "[A] moving tale."--People "A fast-paced, surprise-ending mystery."--USA Today "Poignant. an entertaining story about parental love, friendship, loss."--The Washington Post"-- Provided by publisher.
"A woman and her husband admitted to a hospital to have a baby requests that their nurse be reassigned - they are white supremacists and don't want Ruth, who is black, to touch their baby. The hospital complies, but the baby later goes into cardiac distress when Ruth is on duty. She hesitates before rushing in to perform CPR. When her indecision ends in tragedy, Ruth finds herself on trial, represented by a white public defender who warns against bringing race into a courtroom. As the two come to develop a truer understanding of each other's lives, they begin to doubt the beliefs they each hold most dear.
Call Number: 813.54 PIC
Publication Date: 2016-10-11
Such a Fun Age by Alix Chamberlain is a woman who gets what she wants and has made a living, with her confidence-driven brand, showing other women how to do the same. So she is shocked when her babysitter, Emira Tucker, is confronted while watching the Chamberlains' toddler one night, walking the aisles of their local high-end supermarket. The store's security guard, seeing a young black woman out late with a white child, accuses Emira of kidnapping two-year-old Briar. A small crowd gathers, a bystander films everything, and Emira is furious and humiliated. Alix resolves to make things right. But Emira herself is aimless, broke, and wary of Alix's desire to help. At twenty-five, she is about to lose her health insurance and has no idea what to do with her life. When the video of Emira unearths someone from Alix's past, both women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know about themselves, and each other. With empathy and piercing social commentary, Such a Fun Age explores the stickiness of transactional relationships, what it means to make someone "family," the complicated reality of being a grown up, and the consequences of doing the right thing for the wrong reason.
Call Number: 813.6 R356
Publication Date: 2019-12-31
Mending the World by A celebration of modern black family life, featuring fiction, memoir, and poetry, by African American authors both new and renowned.
Call Number: 810.8 R66M
Publication Date: 2002-12-11
Danger Song by Originally published in 1967, during the height of the Civil Rights Movement, Danger Song is the story of a young African American who attempts to reach beyond his surroundings, which have always been the black community in Boston. His efforts bring him briefly, poignantly, in touch with the seeminly gentler white world and into contact with a new and more threatening danger than the danger he faced on the streets and in the alleys of the tough neighborhood where he grew up. In the end he discovers that he can only be who he is. Here, unforgettably, are the sights, the sounds, the smells, and the explosive emotions that even today continue to shape black communities in all our cities. It is a story you will long remember.
Call Number: 813 R75D
Publication Date: 1971
The Color Purple by Celie is a poor black woman whose letters tell the story of 20 years of her life, beginning at age 14 when she is being abused and raped by her father and attempting to protect her sister from the same fate, and continuing over the course of her marriage to "Mister," a brutal man who terrorizes her. Celie eventually learns that her abusive husband has been keeping her sister's letters from her and the rage she feels, combined with an example of love and independence provided by her close friend Shug, pushes her finally toward an awakening of her creative and loving self.
Call Number: 813 W177 1985
Publication Date: 2003-05-28
The Temple of My Familiar by A visionary cast of characters weave together their past and present in a brilliantly intricate tapestry of tales.
It is the story of the dispossessed and displaced, of peoples whose history is ancient and whose future is yet to come. Here we meet Lissie, a woman of many pasts; Arveyda the great guitarist and his Latin American wife who has had to flee her homeland; Suwelo, the history teacher, and his former wife Fanny who has fallen in love with spirits. Hovering tantalisingly above their stories are Miss Celie and Shug, the beloved characters from The Color Purple.
Call Number: 813.54 W17T
Publication Date: 1997-01-01
The Underground Railroad by Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood—where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned—Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted.
In Whitehead’s ingenious conception, the Underground Railroad is no mere metaphor—engineers and conductors operate a secret network of tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil. Cora and Caesar’s first stop is South Carolina, in a city that initially seems like a haven. But the city’s placid surface masks an insidious scheme designed for its black denizens. And even worse: Ridgeway, the relentless slave catcher, is close on their heels. Forced to flee again, Cora embarks on a harrowing flight, state by state, seeking true freedom.
Like the protagonist of Gulliver’s Travels, Cora encounters different worlds at each stage of her journey—hers is an odyssey through time as well as space. As Whitehead brilliantly re-creates the unique terrors for black people in the pre–Civil War era, his narrative seamlessly weaves the saga of America from the brutal importation of Africans to the unfulfilled promises of the present day. The Underground Railroad is at once a kinetic adventure tale of one woman’s ferocious will to escape the horrors of bondage and a shattering, powerful meditation on the history we all share.
Call Number: 813.54 WHI
Publication Date: 2016-08-02
Red at the Bone by Two families from different social classes are joined together by an unexpected pregnancy and the child that it produces. As the book opens in 2001, it is the evening of sixteen-year-old Melody's coming of age ceremony in her grandparents' Brooklyn brownstone. Watched lovingly by her relatives and friends, making her entrance to the music of Prince, she wears a special custom-made dress. But the event is not without poignancy. Sixteen years earlier, that very dress was measured and sewn for a different wearer: Melody's mother, for her own ceremony -- a celebration that ultimately never took place.
Call Number: 813.54 W89R
Publication Date: 2019-09-17
Native Son by Right from the start, Bigger Thomas had been headed for jail. It could have been for assault or petty larceny; by chance, it was for murder and rape. Native Son tells the story of this young black man caught in a downward spiral after he kills a young white woman in a brief moment of panic.
Set in Chicago in the 1930s, Richard Wright's powerful novel is an unsparing reflection on the poverty and feelings of hopelessness experienced by people in inner cities across the country and of what it means to be black in America.
This edition--the restored text of Native Son established by the Library of America--also includes an essay by Wright titled, How "Bigger" was Born, along with notes on the text.
Call Number: 813.52 W952 NAT
Publication Date: 2005-08-02
The Complete Poetry by Throughout her illustrious career in letters, Maya Angelou gifted, healed, and inspired the world with her words. Now the beauty and spirit of those words live on in this new and complete collection of poetry that reflects and honors the writer's remarkable life. Every poetic phrase, every poignant verse can be found within the pages of this sure-to-be-treasured volume, from her reflections on African American life and hardship in the compilation Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water 'fore I Diiie ("Though there's one thing that I cry for / I believe enough to die for / That is every man's responsibility to man") to her revolutionary celebrations of womanhood in the poem "Still I Rise" ("Out of the huts of history's shame / I rise / Up from a past that's rooted in pain / I rise") to her "On the Pulse of Morning" tribute at President William Jefferson Clinton's inauguration ("Lift up your eyes upon / The day breaking for you. / Give birth again / To the dream."). Maya Angelou: The Complete Poetry also features her final long-form poems, including "A Brave and Startling Truth," "Amazing Peace," "His Day Is Done," and the honest and endearing Mother: "I feared if I let you go You would leave me eternally. You smiled at my fears, saying I could not stay in your lap forever." This collection also includes the never-before-published poem "Amazement Awaits," commissioned for the 2008 Olympic Games: "We are here at the portal of the world we had wished for At the lintel of the world we most need. We are here roaring and singing. We prove that we can not only make peace, we can bring it with us." Timeless and prescient, this definitive compendium will warm the hearts of Maya Angelou's most ardent admirers as it introduces new readers to the legendary poet, activist, and teacher, a phenomenal woman for the ages.
Call Number: 811.54 ANG
Publication Date: 2015-03-31
The Collected Poetry of Nikki Giovanni by For the first time ever, the complete poetry collection spanning three decades from Nikki Giovanni, renowned poet and one of America's national treasures. When her poems first emerged during the Black Arts Movement, in the 1960s, Nikki Giovanni immediately took her place among the most celebrated, controversial and influential poets of the era. Now, more than thirty years later, Giovanni still stands as one of the most commanding, luminous voices to grace America's political and poetic landscape.
Call Number: 811.54 G512C
Publication Date: 2003-11-25
Olio by Part fact, part fiction, Tyehimba Jess's much anticipated second book weaves sonnet, song, and narrative to examine the lives of mostly unrecorded African American performers directly before and after the Civil War up to World War I. Olio is an effort to understand how they met, resisted, complicated, co-opted, and sometimes defeated attempts to minstrelize them. So, while I lead this choir, I still find that I'm being led...I'm a missionary mending my faith in the midst of this flock... I toil in their fields of praise. When folks see these freedmen stand and sing, they hear their God speak in tongues. These nine dark mouths sing shelter; they echo a hymn's haven from slavery's weather. Detroit native Tyehimba Jess is a Cave Canem and NYU Alumni, and has received fellowships from the Whiting Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Illinois Arts Council, and the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center. Jess is also a veteran of the 2000 and 2001 Green Mill Poetry Slam Team. He exhibited his poetry at the 2011 TEDxNashville Conference, and received a 2016 Lannan Literary Award. Jess is an Associate Professor of English at College of Staten Island.
Call Number: 811.6 J58 OLI
Publication Date: 2016-04-05
Shadowed Dreams by This revised and expanded version of the collection contains twice the number of poems found in the original, many of them never before reprinted, and adds eighteen new female voices from the Harlem Renaissance, once again striking new ground in African American literary history. Also new to this edition are nine period illustrations and updated biographical introductions for each poet.
Shadowed Dreams features new poems by Gwendolyn B. Bennett, Anita Scott Coleman, Mae V. Cowdery, Blanche Taylor Dickinson, Alice Dunbar-Nelson, Jessie Redmon Fauset, Angelina Weld Grimké, Gladys May Casely Hayford (a k a Aquah Laluah), Virginia Houston, Georgia Douglas Johnson, Helene Johnson, Effie Lee Newsome, Esther Popel, and Anne Spencer, as well as writings from rediscovered poets Carrie Williams Clifford, Edythe Mae Gordon, Alvira Hazzard, Gertrude Parthenia McBrown, Beatrice M. Murphy, Lucia Mae Pitts, Grace Vera Postles, Ida Rowland, and Lucy Mae Turner, among others.
Call Number: 811.52 S52H
Publication Date: 2006-08-30
Life on Mars by A collection of poems in which Tracy K. Smith examines the discoveries, failures, and oddities of humans.
With allusions to David Bowie and interplanetary travel, Life on Mars imagines a soundtrack for the universe to accompany the discoveries, failures, and oddities of human existence. In these brilliant new poems, Tracy K. Smith envisions a sci-fi future sucked clean of any real dangers, contemplates the dark matter that keeps people both close and distant, and revisits the kitschy concepts like "love" and "illness" now relegated to the Museum of Obsolescence. These poems reveal the realities of life lived here, on the ground, where a daughter is imprisoned in the basement by her own father, where celebrities and pop stars walk among us, and where the poet herself loses her father, one of the engineers who worked on the Hubble Space Telescope. With this remarkable third collection, Smith establishes herself among the best poets of her generation.
Call Number: 811.6 S64L
Publication Date: 2011-05-10
Black Bone by The Appalachian region stretches from Mississippi to New York, encompassing rural areas as well as cities from Birmingham to Pittsburgh. Though Appalachia's people are as diverse as its terrain, few other regions in America are as burdened with stereotypes. Author Frank X Walker coined the term "Affrilachia" to give identity and voice to people of African descent from this region and to highlight Appalachia's multicultural identity. This act inspired a group of gifted artists, the Affrilachian Poets, to begin working together and using their writing to defy persistent stereotypes of Appalachia as a racially and culturally homogenized region. After years of growth, honors, and accomplishments, the group is acknowledging its silver anniversary with Black Bone. Edited by two newer members of the Affrilachian Poets, Bianca Lynne Spriggs and Jeremy Paden, Black Bone is a beautiful collection of both new and classic work and features submissions from Frank X Walker, Nikky Finney, Gerald Coleman, Crystal Wilkinson, Kelly Norman Ellis, and many others. This illuminating and powerful collection is a testament to a groundbreaking group and its enduring legacy.
Call Number: 811.54 S76B
Publication Date: 2018-02-23
Affrilachia by Collects poems about the African American experience in such rural areas as the Appalachian region.
The poems in Affrilachia are funny and sad, tragic and hopeful, angry and determined, and as filled with generosity and love as poetry by any American writer in a generation. This book is powerful and beautiful. It is honest and true. Affrilachia is the most necessary book by a Kentucky writer to be published in many years.
Call Number: 811.54 W17A
Publication Date: 2020-07-28