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Summer Read 2019: Happy Black Daughter


A good summer read gets me excited! What made me a Happy Black Daughter growing up was sitting on the stoop in Bushwick, Brooklyn getting my hair braided while slurping on some ice-cold Italian icy then reading a newspaper, or a few good books I checked out from the library.

I would take jump rope breaks in between my reading marathon. My jump rope breaks would cease once the ice-cream truck rolled up on the block. Yes, summer for me was all about fun and part of that fun was reading a great book.

I've read some amazing books that have inspired me and has left an everlasting impression on me as a person and as a writer. Allow me to share some of these books with you and perhaps you might want to pick up a copy for yourself and get your summer reading going!

- Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, by Mildred D. Taylor

(Click book and synopsis for more info)

"The novel explores life in southern Mississippi in a climate of racism where many are persecuted for the color of their skin. Throughout the book, the reader learns about the importance of land and the effects of racism, at the same time as Cassie Logan (the narrator) learns 'the way things are'. It is key to this story that the narrator is a child as it adds emphasis upon what it was like to grow up in "The South", and it also helps the reader to understand the true impact of racism at this time."

-When Chickenheads Comes Home to Roost: A Hip Hop Feminist Breaks it Down, by Joan Morgan

"...decidedly intimate look into the life of the modern black woman: a complex world where feminists often have not-so-clandestine affairs with the most sexist of men; where women who treasure their independence often prefer men who pick up the tab; where the deluge of babymothers and babyfathers reminds black women, who long for marriage, that traditional nuclear families are a reality for less than 40 percent of the African-American population; and where black women are forced to make sense of a world where "truth is no longer black and white but subtle, intriguing shades of gray."

-True Compass, by Edward M. Kennedy

"...widely regarded as one of the great Senators in the nation's history. He is also the patriarch of America's most heralded family. In this landmark autobiography, five years in the making, Senator Kennedy speaks with unprecedented candor about his extraordinary life."

- The Things They Carried, Tim O'Brien

A book about Vietnam

It sits on the narrow shelf of indispensable works by witnesses to and participants in the fighting, alongside Michael Herr’s Dispatches, Tobias Wolff’s In Pharaoh’s Army, and James Webb’s Fields of Fire.” -A.O. Scott