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New and Featured Black History for Adults

Below are our picks for some notable new books on Black history for adults, along with some old favorites. At the end of the list you'll find novels with a Black History theme.

CLICK HERE TO SEE OUR CHOICES FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS. (Not included in the Juneteenth sale)

On Juneteenth Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781631498831
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Published: Liveright - May 4th, 2021

The essential, sweeping story of Juneteenth’s integral importance to American history, as told by a Pulitzer Prize–winning historian and Texas native.

Weaving together American history, dramatic family chronicle, and searing episodes of memoir, Annette Gordon-Reed’s On Juneteenth provides a historian’s view of the country’s long road to Juneteenth, recounting both its origins in Texas and the enormous hardships that African-Americans have endured in the century since, from Reconstruction through Jim Crow and beyond. All too aware of the stories of cowboys, ranchers, and oilmen that have long dominated the lore of the Lone Star State, Gordon-Reed—herself a Texas native and the descendant of enslaved people brought to Texas as early as the 1820s—forges a new and profoundly truthful narrative of her home state, with implications for us all.


Admissions: A Memoir of Surviving Boarding School Cover Image
$29.00
ISBN: 9781538753484
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Published: Grand Central Publishing - January 18th, 2022

A sharp-witted and deeply insightful look into the storied world of elite prep schools from the first African-American legacy student to graduate from The Taft School. With its combination of incisive social critique and uproarious depictions of elite nonsense, ADMISSIONS will resonate with anyone who has ever been The Only One in a room, dealt with racial microaggressions, or even just suffered from an extreme case of homesickness.


The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story Cover Image
By Nikole Hannah-Jones (Created by), The New York Times Magazine (Created by), Caitlin Roper (Editor), Ilena Silverman (Editor), Jake Silverstein (Editor)
$32.30
ISBN: 9780593230572
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Published: One World - November 16th, 2021

The New York Times Magazine’s award-winning “1619 Project” issue reframed our understanding of American history by placing slavery and its continuing legacy at the center of our national narrative. This new book substantially expands on that work, weaving together eighteen essays that explore the legacy of slavery in present-day America with thirty-six poems and works of fiction that illuminate key moments of oppression, struggle, and resistance. The essays show how the inheritance of 1619 reaches into every part of contemporary American society, from politics, music, diet, traffic, and citizenship to capitalism, religion, and our democracy itself.


Black Birds in the Sky: The Story and Legacy of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780063056664
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Published: Balzer + Bray - October 5th, 2021

A searing new work of nonfiction for Young Adults from award-winning author Brandy Colbert about the history and legacy of one of the most deadly and destructive acts of racial violence in American history: the Tulsa Race Massacre. 


All That She Carried: The Journey of Ashley's Sack, a Black Family Keepsake Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781984855015
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Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - February 1st, 2022

Now in paperback! NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER • A renowned historian traces the life of a single object handed down through three generations of Black women to craft an extraordinary testament to people who are left out of the archives.


Civil Rights Queen: Constance Baker Motley and the Struggle for Equality Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9781524747183
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Published: Pantheon - January 25th, 2022

The first major biography of one of our most influential judges--an activist lawyer who became the first Black woman appointed to the federal judiciary--that provides an eye-opening account of the twin struggles for gender equality and civil rights in the 20th Century.


Music Is History Cover Image
$29.99
ISBN: 9781419751431
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Published: Abrams Image - October 19th, 2021

Focusing on the years 1971 to the present, Questlove finds the hidden connections in the American tapes- try, whether investigating how the blaxploitation era reshaped Black identity or considering the way disco took an assembly-line approach to Black genius. And these critical inquiries are complemented by his own memories as a music fan, and the way his appetite for pop culture taught him about America. A history of the last half-century and an intimate conversation with one of music's most influential and original voices, Music Is History is a singular look at contemporary America.


Black Joy: Stories of Resistance, Resilience, and Restoration Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982176556
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Published: Gallery Books - February 1st, 2022

When Tracey M. Lewis-Giggetts wrote an essay on Black joy for The Washington Post, she had no idea just how deeply it would resonate. But the outpouring of responses affirmed her own lived experience: that Black joy is not just a weapon of resistance, it is a tool for resilience.

 

With this book, Tracey aims to gift her community with a collection of lyrical essays about the way joy has evolved, even in the midst of trauma, in her own life. Detailing these instances of joy in the context of Black culture allows us to recognize the power of Black joy as a resource to draw upon, and to challenge the one-note narratives of Black life as solely comprised of trauma and hardship.


South to America: A Journey Below the Mason-Dixon to Understand the Soul of a Nation Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9780062977403
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Published: Ecco - January 25th, 2022

We all think we know the South. Even those who have never lived there can rattle off a list of signifiers: the Civil War, Gone with the Wind, the Ku Klux Klan, plantations, football, Jim Crow, slavery. But the idiosyncrasies, dispositions, and habits of the region are stranger and more complex than much of the country tends to acknowledge. In South to America, Imani Perry shows that the meaning of American is inextricably linked with the South, and that our understanding of its history and culture is the key to understanding the nation as a whole. This is the story of a Black woman and native Alabaman returning to the region she has always called home and considering it with fresh eyes.


Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America, 1619-2019 Cover Image
$20.00
ISBN: 9780593449349
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Published: One World - February 1st, 2022

Now in paperback! Four Hundred Souls is a unique one-volume “community” history of African Americans. The editors, Ibram X. Kendi and Keisha N. Blain, have assembled ninety brilliant writers, each of whom takes on a five-year period of that four-hundred-year span. The writers explore their periods through a variety of techniques: historical essays, short stories, personal vignettes, and fiery polemics. They approach history from various perspectives: through the eyes of towering historical icons or the untold stories of ordinary people; through places, laws, and objects. 


Call Us What We Carry: Poems Cover Image
$24.99
ISBN: 9780593465066
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Published: Viking Books - December 7th, 2021

Formerly titled The Hill We Climb and Other Poems, the luminous poetry collection by #1 New York Times bestselling author and presidential inaugural poet Amanda Gorman captures a shipwrecked moment in time and transforms it into a lyric of hope and healing. In Call Us What We Carry, Gorman explores history, language, identity, and erasure through an imaginative and intimate collage. 


Righteous Troublemakers: Untold Stories of the Social Justice Movement in America Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781335639912
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Published: Hanover Square Press - January 11th, 2022

While the world may know the major names of the Civil Rights movement, there are countless lesser-known heroes fighting the good fight to advance equal justice for all, heeding the call when no one else was listening, often risking their lives and livelihoods in the process. This book by Rev. Al Sharpton shines a light on everyday people called to do extraordinary things--like Pauli Murray, whose early work informed Thurgood Marshall's legal argument for Brown v. Board of Education, Claudette Colvin, who refused to give up her seat on a segregated bus months before Rosa Parks did the same, and Gwen Carr, whose private pain in losing her son Eric Garner stoked her public activism against police brutality.


Soul City: Race, Equality, and the Lost Dream of an American Utopia Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781250811264
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Published: Metropolitan Books - February 1st, 2022

Now in paperback! In 1969, with America’s inner cities in turmoil and racial tensions high, civil rights leader Floyd McKissick announced an audacious plan: he would build a new city in rural North Carolina, open to all races but intended primarily to benefit Black people. In a brilliantly vivid, gripping narrative, acclaimed author Thomas Healy resurrects this forgotten saga of race, capitalism, and the struggle for equality. Was it an impossible, misbegotten dream from the beginning? Or a brilliant idea thwarted by prejudice and bad timing? And how differently might history have turned out if Soul City had been allowed to succeed?


Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781541600256
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Published: Basic Books - December 7th, 2021

acclaimed historian Martha S. Jones offers a new history of African American women’s political lives in America. She recounts how they defied both racism and sexism to fight for the ballot, and how they wielded political power to secure the equality and dignity of all persons. From the earliest days of the republic to the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and beyond, Jones excavates the lives and work of Black women—Maria Stewart, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Fannie Lou Hamer, and more—who were the vanguard of women’s rights, calling on America to realize its best ideals.   


The Black Church: This Is Our Story, This Is Our Song Cover Image
$20.00
ISBN: 9781984880352
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Published: Penguin Books - January 18th, 2022

Now in paperback. For the young Henry Louis Gates, Jr., growing up in a small, residentially segregated West Virginia town, the church was a center of gravity--an intimate place where voices rose up in song and neighbors gathered to celebrate life's blessings and offer comfort amid its trials and tribulations. In this tender and expansive reckoning with the meaning of the Black Church in America, Gates takes us on a journey spanning more than five centuries, from the intersection of Christianity and the transatlantic slave trade to today's political landscape. At road's end, and after Gates's distinctive meditation on the churches of his childhood, we emerge with a new understanding of the importance of African American religion to the larger national narrative--as a center of resistance to slavery and white supremacy, as a magnet for political mobilization, as an incubator of musical and oratorical talent that would transform the culture, and as a crucible for working through the Black community's most critical personal and social issues.


The Last Slave Ship: The True Story of How Clotilda Was Found, Her Descendants, and an Extraordinary Reckoning Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781982136048
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Published: Simon & Schuster - January 25th, 2022

The incredible true story of the last ship to carry enslaved people to America, the remarkable town its survivors founded after emancipation, and the complicated legacy their descendants carry with them to this day-by the journalist who discovered the ship's remains.


I Came As a Shadow: An Autobiography Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781250619365
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Published: Holt Paperbacks - February 8th, 2022

John Thompson was never just a basketball coach and I Came As a Shadow is categorically not just a basketball autobiography. After three decades at the center of race and sports in America, the first Black head coach to win an NCAA championship is ready to make the private public. Chockful of stories and moving beyond mere stats (and what stats! three Final Fours, four times national coach of the year, seven Big East championships, 97 percent graduation rate), Thompson's book drives us through his childhood under Jim Crow segregation to our current moment of racial reckoning. We experience riding shotgun with Celtics icon Red Auerbach, and coaching NBA Hall of Famers like Patrick Ewing and Allen Iverson. How did he inspire the phrase "Hoya Paranoia"? You'll see. And thawing his historically glacial stare, Thompson brings us into his negotiation with a DC drug kingpin in his players' orbit in the 1980s, as well as behind the scenes on the Nike board today.


Black Cowboys of Rodeo: Unsung Heroes from Harlem to Hollywood and the American West Cover Image
$34.95
ISBN: 9781496226105
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Published: University of Nebraska Press - November 1st, 2021

Black Cowboys of Rodeo is a collection of one hundred years of stories, told by these revolutionary Black pioneers themselves and set against the backdrop of Reconstruction, Jim Crow, segregation, the civil rights movement, and eventually the integration of a racially divided country.


Lorraine Hansberry: The Life Behind A Raisin in the Sun Cover Image
$29.99
ISBN: 9781250205537
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Published: Henry Holt and Co. - January 18th, 2022

Written when she was just twenty-eight, Lorraine Hansberry’s landmark A Raisin in the Sun is listed by the National Theatre as one of the hundred most significant works of the twentieth century. Hansberry was the first Black woman to have a play performed on Broadway, and the first Black and youngest American playwright to win a New York Critics’ Circle Award. Charles J. Shields’s authoritative biography of one of the twentieth century’s most admired playwrights examines the parts of Lorraine Hansberry’s life that have escaped public knowledge: the influence of her upper-class background, her fight for peace and nuclear disarmament, the reason why she embraced Communism during the Cold War, and her dependence on her white husband—her best friend, critic, and promoter. Many of the identity issues about class, sexuality, and race that she struggled with are relevant and urgent today.


Colorization: One Hundred Years of Black Films in a White World Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780525656876
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Published: Knopf - October 19th, 2021

This unprecedented history of Black cinema examines 100 years of Black movies--from Gone with the Wind to Blaxploitation films to Black Panther--using the struggles and triumphs of the artists, and the films themselves, as a prism to explore Black culture, civil rights, and racism in America. From the acclaimed author of The Butler and Showdown. Beginning in 1915 with D. W. Griffith's The Birth of a Nation--which glorified the Ku Klux Klan and became Hollywood's first blockbuster--Wil Haygood gives us an incisive, fascinating, little-known history, spanning more than a century, of Black artists in the film business, on-screen and behind the scenes.


Dvorak's Prophecy: And the Vexed Fate of Black Classical Music Cover Image
By Joseph Horowitz, George Shirley (Foreword by)
$30.00
ISBN: 9780393881240
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Published: W. W. Norton & Company - November 23rd, 2021

 In 1893 the composer Antonin Dvorâak prophesied a "great and noble" school of American classical music based on the searing "negro melodies" he had excitedly discovered since arriving in the United States a year before. But while Black music would found popular genres known the world over, it never gained a foothold in the concert hall. This provocative interpretation explores why classical music in America stayed white--how it got to be that way and what can be done about it.


We Are Each Other’s Harvest: Celebrating African American Farmers, Land, and Legacy Cover Image
$39.99
ISBN: 9780062932563
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Published: Amistad - April 6th, 2021

In this impressive anthology, Natalie Baszile brings together essays, poems, photographs, quotes, conversations, and first-person stories to examine black people’s connection to the American land from Emancipation to today. In the 1920s, there were over one million black farmers; today there are just 45,000. Baszile explores this crisis, through the farmers’ personal experiences. In their own words, middle aged and elderly black farmers explain why they continue to farm despite systemic discrimination and land loss. The "Returning Generation"—young farmers, who are building upon the legacy of their ancestors, talk about the challenges they face as they seek to redress issues of food justice, food sovereignty, and reparations. 


Friends from the Beginning: The Berkeley Village That Raised Kamala and Me Cover Image
$29.00
ISBN: 9781538707487
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Published: Twelve - November 16th, 2021

A vivid, intimate portrait of the friendship forged between Stacey Johnson Batiste and her childhood best friend, Vice President Kamala Harris—and of the community in which they were raised, and the lessons offered by those they loved and admired from childhood, through their teenage years, and up to the present day.


Dance Theatre of Harlem: A History, A Movement, A Celebration Cover Image
$50.00
ISBN: 9781496733603
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Published: Dafina - October 26th, 2021

From its modest beginnings in the 1960s in a Harlem church basement, to its meteoric rise to international fame, the Dance Theatre of Harlem ignited the world with one simple, still-revolutionary statement: All can do ballet. Into the 21st century, as the world, and the country, continue their historical struggles and triumphs, the story of this haven for dancers of all colors and backgrounds resonates more than ever. Here, for the first time, is the definitive portrait of the one-of-a-kind community dance company that reflected--and shaped--our times, and whose enduring principle continues to inspire the future.


The Color Of Abolition: How a Printer, a Prophet, and a Contessa Moved a Nation Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781328900241
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Published: Mariner Books - February 8th, 2022

The story of the fascinating, fraught alliance among Frederick Douglass, William Lloyd Garrison, and Maria Weston Chapman—and how its breakup led to the success of America's most important social movement  


Heart of Atlanta: Five Black Pastors and the Supreme Court Victory for Integration Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781641605274
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Published: Lawrence Hill Books - January 18th, 2022

In Atlanta, Georgia, two arch segregationists vowed to flout the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the sweeping slate of civil rights reforms just signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The Pickrick restaurant was run by Lester Maddox, soon to be governor of Georgia. The other, the Heart of Atlanta motel, was operated by lawyer Moreton Rolleston Jr. In gripping detail built from exclusive interviews and original documents, Heart of Atlanta reveals the saga of the case's rise to the U.S. Supreme Court, which unanimously rejected the segregationists.


The Black History Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained Cover Image
By DK, David Olusoga (Foreword by)
$25.00
ISBN: 9780744042146
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Published: DK - November 23rd, 2021

With profiles of key people, movements, and events, The Black History Book brings together accounts of the most significant ideas and milestones in Black history and culture. This vital and thought-provoking book presents a bold and accessible overview of the history of the African continent and its peoples – from the earliest human migrations to modern Black communities and the African diaspora. Powerful images and innovative infographics bring to life the stories of the early kingdoms of Ancient Egypt, Nubia, and Carthage; the powerful empires of the Medieval and Early Modern eras; and the struggle against European colonizers. Black history and culture beyond the African continent is also explored in detail – including the Atlantic Slave Trade; the quilombos (slave resistance camps) of Brazil; the Harlem Renaissance and Jazz Age; the “Windrush” migration; Civil Rights and Black feminist movements; and Black Lives Matter. 


Against Civility: The Hidden Racism in Our Obsession with Civility Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780807055533
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Published: Beacon Press - February 8th, 2022

Spanning two hundred years, Zamalin’s accessible blend of intellectual history, political biography, and contemporary political criticism shows that civility has never been neutral in its political uses and impacts. The best way to tackle racial inequality is through “civic radicalism,” an alternative to civility found in the actions of Black radical leaders including Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman, Ida B. Wells, Martin Luther King Jr., James Baldwin, Malcolm X, and Audre Lorde. Civic radicals shock and provoke people. They name injustice and who is responsible for it. They protest, march, strike, boycott, and mobilize collectively rather than form alliances with those who fundamentally oppose them.


Race Against Time: The Politics of a Darkening America Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781645037262
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Published: Bold Type Books - September 14th, 2021

As the Republican Party has lost the popular vote in seven of the last eight presidential elections, its leaders have incited white Americans in a last-ditch race against time to stop the advance of a new, multiracial emerging majority. Keith Boykin, long time political commentator, has watched this white resentment consume the GOP over the course of a life in politics, activism, and journalism. He has also observed the divisions among Democrats, as white progressives have postponed demands for full racial equity, while Black voters have often been too forgiving of party leaders who have failed to deliver. America can no longer avoid its long overdue reckoning with the past, Boykin argues. With the familiarity of personal experience and the acuity of historical insight, Boykin urges us to fight racism, sexism, xenophobia, and homophobia, and save the union, not just by making Black lives matter, but by making Black lives equal.


Against White Feminism: Notes on Disruption Cover Image
$23.95
ISBN: 9781324006619
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Published: W. W. Norton & Company - August 17th, 2021

Covering such ground as the legacy of the British feminist imperialist savior complex and “the colonial thesis that all reform comes from the West” to the condescension of the white feminist–led “aid industrial complex” and the conflation of sexual liberation as the “sum total of empowerment,” Zakaria follows in the tradition of intersectional feminist forebears Kimberlé Crenshaw, Adrienne Rich, and Audre Lorde. Zakaria ultimately refutes and reimagines the apolitical aspirations of white feminist empowerment in this staggering, radical critique, with Black and Brown feminist thought at the forefront.


Black American Refugee: Escaping the Narcissism of the American Dream Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780593298541
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Published: Viking - February 15th, 2022

In the early '90s, young Tiffanie Drayton and her siblings left Trinidad and Tobago to join their mother in New Jersey, where she'd been making her way as a domestic worker, eager to give her children a shot at the American Dream. She must come to terms with the ways in which systematic racism and resultant trauma keep the American Dream inaccessible to Black people.


A House Built by Slaves: African American Visitors to the Lincoln White House Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781538161807
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Published: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers - February 12th, 2022

Rediscover the forgotten story of how President Lincoln welcomed African Americans to his White House during America's most divided and war-torn era. Jonathan White illuminates why Lincoln's welcome of African Americans to the White House transformed the trajectory of race relations in the United States, using the White House as the stage to empower Black voices in America's most divisive era.


The African American Soldier: A Two-Hundred Year History of African Americans in the U.S. Military Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780806541709
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Published: Citadel - January 25th, 2022

From Bunker Hill to San Juan Heights, from France's muddy trenches to the Persian Gulf's scorched sands, African Americans have fought fiercely and bravely. They have battled to overthrow British rule, to preserve the union, to safeguard their allies, and to protect democracy. Many have fought for freedom they would never see themselves, risking their lives for the country and for the right to become full citizens.


The Great Mrs. Elias: A Novel Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780063019904
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Published: Amistad - February 8th, 2022

The author of the award-winning Sally Hemings now brings to life Hannah Elias, one of the richest black women in America in the early 1900s, in this mesmerizing novel swirling with atmosphere and steeped in history.


Don't Cry for Me Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781335425737
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Published: Hanover Square Press - February 1st, 2022

In this moving novel, as Jacob lies dying, he begins to write a letter to his only son, Isaac. They have not met or spoken in many years, and there are things that Isaac must know. Stories about his ancestral legacy in rural Arkansas that extend back to slavery. Secrets from Jacob's tumultuous relationship with Isaac's mother and the shame he carries from the dissolution of their family. Tragedies that informed Jacob's role as a father and his reaction to Isaac's being gay.


Black Cloud Rising Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780802159199
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Published: Grove Press - February 22nd, 2022

A compelling historical novel about how, in the fall of 1863, Union forces had taken control of Tidewater Virginia, and established a toehold in eastern North Carolina, including along the Outer Banks. Thousands of freed slaves and runaways flooded the Union lines, but Confederate irregulars still roamed the region. In December, the newly formed African Brigade, a unit of these former slaves led by General Edward Augustus Wild--a one-armed, impassioned Abolitionist--set out from Portsmouth to hunt down the rebel guerillas and extinguish the threat.


Black Cake: A Novel Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780593358337
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Published: Ballantine Books - February 1st, 2022

In this moving debut novel, two estranged siblings must set aside their differences to deal with their mother's death and her hidden past--a journey of discovery that takes them from the Caribbean to London to California and ends with her famous black cake. In present-day California, Eleanor Bennett's death leaves behind a puzzling inheritance for her two children, Byron and Benny: a traditional Caribbean black cake, made from a family recipe with a long history, and a voice recording. Deeply evocative and beautifully written, Black Cake is an extraordinary journey through the life of a family changed forever by the choices of its matriarch.


Things Past Telling: A Novel Cover Image
$25.99
ISBN: 9780063097070
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Published: Amistad - March 15th, 2022

The author of The Secret Women tells the story of a brave and enduring woman as indomitable as Ernest Gaines' legendary Miss Jane Pittman, in a breathtaking novel that combines the epic romance and adventure of Outlander, the sweeping drama of Roots, and the haunting historical power of Barracoon. Inspired by a 112-year-old woman the author discovered in an 1870 U.S. Federal census report for Ohio, loosely based on the author's real-life female ancestors, spanning more than a hundred years, from the mid-eighteen-century to the end of America's Civil War, and spanning across the globe, from what is now southern Nigeria to the islands of the Caribbean to North America and the land bordering the Ohio River, Things Past Telling is a breathtaking story of a past that lives on in all of us, and a life that encompasses the best--and worst--of our humanity.


Follow the Angels, Follow the Doves: The Bass Reeves Trilogy, Book One Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781496218759
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Published: Bison Books - March 1st, 2020

Before Bass Reeves could stake his claim as the most successful nineteenth-century American lawman, arresting more outlaws than any other deputy during his thirty-two-year career as a deputy U.S. marshal in some of the most dangerous regions of the Wild West, he was a slave.

After a childhood picking cotton, Reeves became an expert marksman under his master’s tutelage, winning shooting contests throughout the region. His skill had serious implications, however, as the Civil War broke out. Reeves was given to his master’s mercurial, sadistic, Moby-Dick-quoting son in the hopes that Reeves would keep him safe in battle. The ensuing humiliation, love, heroics, war, mind games, and fear solidified Reeves’s determination to gain his freedom and drew him one step further on his fated path to an illustrious career.


Hell on the Border: The Bass Reeves Trilogy, Book Two Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781496220318
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Published: Bison Books - April 1st, 2021

et in 1884, Hell on the Border tells the story of Deputy U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves at the peak of his historic career. Famous for being a crack shot as well as for his nonviolent tendencies, Reeves uses his African American race to his strategic advantage. Along with a tramp or cowboy disguise, Reeves appears so nonthreatening that he often positions himself close enough to the outlaws he is pursuing to arrest them without bloodshed.

After a series of heroic feats of capturing and killing infamous outlaws—most notably Jim Webb—and an introduction to Belle Starr, Reeves finds himself in the Fort Smith jail, charged with murder. This second book in the Bass Reeves Trilogy investigates what really happened when Reeves made the greatest mistake of his life on the heels of his greatest achievements.