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15 Books That Every Black Woman Should Own

If you are an avid reader, keep scrolling this post for 15 Books that every black woman should own. ( and everyone else too).

15 Books that every Black Woman Should Own

I’ve been an avid reader since childhood. But I didn’t really realize that there were books about girls, women, and people who look like me until around the 6th grade.  It was a transitional year for me since I switched schools in the middle of the year.

Every day after school, I waited in the library by my school for my mother to pick me up. And while I waited, I discovered a small section of the library full of stories and ideas and information about black people.  It was…life changing. I can tell you that that semester of school, I devoured almost everything in that section.  And that summer,

It was…life changing. I can tell you that that semester of school, I devoured almost everything in that section.  And that summer,

I can tell you that that semester of school, I devoured almost everything in that section.  And that summer, I finished the rest. That was when my habit of reading a book in a day began. That was when I started to spend all of my allowance on books. That was the year my love of books was solidified.

So I’ve read every book on this list. Many many times.  And so I can honestly recommend them all.  Some are not my favorites of the author’s but they are important and I feel like that should be read at least once.  

I feel like these books should be on every bookshelf of every black woman. These are 15 books that every black woman should own.  This is by no means a comprehensive list.  After all, there are only 15 books on it.  But I hope it sparks your interest, provides a starting point.

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15 Books That Every Black Woman Should Own

1. A Raisin in the Sun By Lorraine Hansberry

2. Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston

3. Sister Outsider  By Audre Lorde

4. Waiting To Exhale  by Terry McMillan

5.The Street By Ann Petry 

6. I Know Why The Caged Birds Sing By Maya Angelou

7. The Women of Brewster Place by Gloria Naylor

8.The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

9. The Color Purple By Alice Walker

10. What looks like crazy on an ordinary Day By Pearl Cleage

11. For Colored Girls who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf By Ntozake Shange

12. Nappily Ever After  By Trisha R Thomas

13. Ain’t I A Woman By Bell Hooks

14. Kindred By Octavia Butler

15. In Search of Satisfaction By J California Cooper

Like I said in the beginning, this is by no means the lists of all lists. But I feel like these 15 books are a start. There are several more fiction and nonfiction that I think everyone should own, or at least read. Maybe that’s for another post at another time. In the meantime, in the comments, tell me what books resonated with you? What book is the one that opened your eyes, made you laugh or cry, enlightened you , or just made you feel good?

Sound off in the comments!

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Wednesday 28th of August 2019

I have discovered a lot of great black authors by going to the library and just looking around the shelves. I have read many on your list years ago I too am an avid reader.

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Tiffany H.

Tuesday 7th of February 2017

I love to read and have been an avid reader since I was a little child. My mom was always calling me to come and I was usually somewhere reading a book. I need to catch up and read several of these books.