I’m an avid reader: most of you know that already. But I’m not always the most intentional reader. Too often, I’m an in-the-moment reader. I don’t read a book I’ve always wanted to read, but I jump on the latest book launch, or I hastily buy the newest on-sale novel for my Kindle.
While my reading selections have improved over the past couple of years, there remains a good deal of books I continue to push to the side when I prioritize some of these in-the-moment reading decisions.
The thing is, I want to be a person of intentionality, not just in the books I read but in every area of my life.
Are you with me?
That’s why I’m reading for change: Join me as I only read books written by black authors for Black History Month.
For me, I’m passionate about issues of racial justice – and to learn and grow and better enter into the discussion, I need to understand the discussion. One way you and I can do this is by reading. As long as I continue to read authors that are easy for me to read (see: white, Christian women), I won’t necessarily be challenged. In my comfort, I won’t necessarily learn about experiences outside of my own. I won’t necessarily be changed.
So, that’s why I’ve decided to read with intention in February. Would you consider reading alongside my friend Kelley, me and a handful of other bloggers?
That’s step one.
Here’s step two: figure out which books you’re going to read. If you need help in this arena, I’d love for you to join me in reading one (or more) of the four books listed below. And, if you want, enter into a discussion on the date listed below. Leave a comment or link up the day of on my blog. Share a post on your own website. Rally a group of friends together and hold an informal book club. Take a selfie next to the book and post it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
But most of all, dare to dialogue about how the book changed you.
2/22: Stride Toward Freedom by Martin Luther King, Jr. (Non Fiction). Or, read about a piece of history from another black author.
2/23: Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Fiction). If you’ve read Americanah, you won’t want to miss her story here as well. Also, be sure to check out the words of Caris and Annie that day, too.
2/24: Trouble I’ve Seen by Drew G. I. Hart (Christian Non Fiction). I’m giddy to find out the answer to this question: “What if racial reconciliation doesn’t look like what you expected?”
2/25: Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson (YA Memoir). Not only did the book win numerous awards, but according to Modern Mrs. Darcy it’s quite the read on Audible (or however you choose to consume audiobooks). You won’t want to miss posts by Osheta and Jamie on this day as well.
If you still don’t know what to read, Kelley has a list of her best reads on race, and Deidra does a monthly book club of reads by black authors. Also, the Red Couch Book Club is reading Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me for its March selection, so consider joining in then. It’s a powerful one, that’s for sure.
I can’t wait to see the change February has for us!
I’m dreaming big with this: What if we read for change every couple of months, highlighting a different people group? This could bring change, y’all, it could, it could. As per black authors, what ONE book by ONE black author are you hoping to read?
*Contains Amazon Affiliate links, yo. Thanks for helping me stick it to my reading habit!