I am very happy to see that the book community has been uplifting Black voices and I wanted to share my own personal list that I featured on my Instagram account for Black History Month, back in February. This list features books that I have mostly read, as well as some books that have been recommended to me!
Chances are most of you also enjoy watching videos by Booktubers and with the attention the Black Lives Matter has rightfully received, I realized that I did not follow many Black booktubers and that’s a shame. Through the “Black Booktuber” tag I discovered so many fun, interesting and amazing booktubers.
If you really wish to amplify Black voices, do not only follow them as that seems performative but engage and comment! (If you want of course).
I haven’t been very vocal on here because the past few days have awakened old wounds and created new ones. I even shared a little bit of how I felt on Instagram a few days ago on this post.
Seeing so many people speaking up and coming together to claim that Black Lives Matter has warmed my heart. But I cannot help but feel anger because I have been suffering from these issues from a long time. I have tried to raise awareness to these issues for years and I was always seen as the “Angry Black girl”, which was degrading and frustrating. I was always conflicted because I would meet new people, confide in them, love them and they would randomly say something racist and I didn’t know how to react: speak up? Call them out? Laugh It off? Lose friends? I felt like I was betraying who I was when I didn’t, but I also didn’t like how I was being seen. Learning about racism is a privilege, young Black children do not have.
I ask you today to be allies, to speak up, listen to Black people and their experiences, believe them, support them, call out your racist friends, relatives or even strangers. Speaking up is never easy, it costs you but it matters. You will make mistakes, you will hurt people but take comfort in the fact that you are doing the right thing. As they say “practice makes perfect”. You can listen to interviews, podcasts, read books, essays or have conversion with Black people and it will help you in knowing what you can say when the time comes. And remember Black Lives Matter, and they have always mattered and they will always matter.
I am very happy that the past few days have allowed Black poeple to come forth and allowed their voices to be heard. I have always wished for more representation in the book community, especially in YA. Children of Blood and Bone is the kind of book I would have loved to grow up with and I wish there had been more books like this, that is to say featuring fierce, strong and brave Black characters, especially women.
Title: Children of Blood and Bone
Author: Tomi Adeyemi
Synopsis: Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy. (Goodreads)