One my new year’s resolutions for 2018 was to read at least one book a month so I decided to compile a list of books that I plan to read in this new year. During 2017, I only got around to reading five books. I know, I have to do better. Last year, I wrote a post including seven books by people of color that everyone should read.
Although my goal is to read a minimum of twelve books, this list includes more than twelve just in case I reach my goal early. The main question I ask myself when looking for a book to read is: is this book relatable? Sure, not every book will be relatable but will I read a sentence or phrase and want to highlight it and/or write a note next to it? That’s the main reason I hate borrowing books from libraries, I love to annotate the novels I read. Plus, it gives me a lot more than two weeks to read the entire thing. I know you came for the list so here goes:
Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
I’ve already read Americanah and Half of a Yellow Sun by Adichie, so I plan to read Purple Hibiscus because I love her writing and it’s a coming-of-age novel (my favorite genre of films and novels).
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
I’ve been meaning to read this book for a loooong time but I haven’t gotten around to it but I will make sure to read this book before the year is over and the film (starring Amandla Stenberg) premieres. This novel is based on#BlackLivesMatter and the title comes from Tupac’s THUG LIFE and centers around a black teenage girl after she loses a friend to police brutality. Clearly, a must read.
The Mothers by Brit Bennett
Brit Bennett’s debut novel has been critically acclaimed and really captured my attention from the moment I read the plot summary. This book has been on my list since July and I haven’t found it in any of the bookstores I’ve been in recently so hopefully, I can find it soon (update: I found it). I love novels with black women as the protagonists and I can’t wait to start reading it soon.
My Soul Looks Back by Jessica B. Harris
This memoir is about the author’s days in New York City back in the 1970s. Harris recounts her adventures with Maya Angelou, James Baldwin, and Toni Morrison. That alone made me want to read it but if you want more info, feel free to click the link above.
Chemistry by Weike Wang
This novel features a Chinese doctoral student who is reevaluating her life as everything in her life unravels. Throughout the novel, she tries to find her purpose so of course, this is #relatable.
What We Lose by Zinzi Clemmon
What We Lose is a coming-of-age novel about a young black girl who just lost her mother to cancer. BuzzFeed describes it as “powerfully moving and beautifully wrought…reflects on family, love, loss, race, womanhood, and the places we feel home.” This is also Clemmons’ first novel.
Waiting to Exhale by Terry McMillian
First things first, I’ve never seen the film and I promised myself I wouldn’t watch it until I read the book so here it is on my list.
New People by Danzy Senna
I have a confession to make: I already finished this book. It was such a page-turner for me that I finished it in only one day! I wasn’t expecting to love this book when I borrowed it from my local library but after a few pages, I found myself constantly turning pages to learn more about Maria, her relationship with Khalil, and her life. Being a biracial woman herself, Senna often writes about protagonists that are biracial as well, including Maria.
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) and Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling
I love Mindy. From The Office to The Mindy Project, I think she’s fantastic and I can’t wait for Ocean’s 8 to come out later this year. I’ve been meaning to read her first book for a long time now and I’m determined to get every book off of my book bucket list during this year.
For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf by Ntozake Shange
I’ve already seen the movie for this but it’s honestly one of my favorite films so I definitely want to read the book and you should too, especially if you’re a black woman!
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and Drown by Junot Díaz
I read This is How You Lose Her back in high school thanks to a Tumblr post and I fell in love with it and have reread it multiple times since then. I plan to read these two books because they’ve been on my Amazon wishlist forever and I love Díaz’s work.
That’s my reading to-do list for the year. I’ll keep y’all updated as I read them. Do you have any suggestions? Leave them in the comments below!