In times of upheaval, readers naturally turn to books to make sense of what’s happening. With protesters now marching through Portland regularly under the banner of the Black Lives Matter movement, we asked several local Black writers if they’d be willing to recommend books that address racial issues.
Here are suggestions from Intisar Abioto, a Portland writer and multidisciplinary artist who created The Black Portlanders project; Walidah Imarisha, a Black history scholar whose book Angels with Dirty Faces: Three Stories of Crime, Prison, and Redemption won a 2017 Oregon Book Award; David F. Walker, a Portland-based comic writer (The Life of Frederick Douglass: A Graphic Narrative of a Slave’s Journey From Bondage to Freedom); and poet Emmett Wheatfall, whose latest collection, Our Scarlet Blue Wounds, considers race in America.
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Missing Daddy, a look at incarceration from a child’s point of view, by Mariame Kaba, founder of Project Nia, which works to end youth incarceration.
The People Could Fly: American Black Folktales and The Planet of Junior Brown by Virginia Hamilton, a National Book Award and Newbery Medal honoree and the first children’s author to be named a MacArthur Fellow.
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The Binti trilogy, which TheVerge.com dubbed “interstellar Afrofuturism,” by Nnedi Okorafor, a Hugo- and Nebula Award-winning author.
Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories for Social Justice Movements, co-edited by Walidah Imarisha.
Parable of the Sower, a novel by MacArthur Fellow and Nebula Award-winning author Octavia Butler.
Go to the full article for recommendations for Biography and Memoir, Essays, Fiction, History and Politics, Poetry, Social Justice, Young Adult Literature, and more. Then get in touch with your local independent bookstore to add to your collection.