Best African American Historical Fiction Books
Here you will get Best African American Historical Fiction Books For you.This is an up-to-date list of recommended books.
1. The Sweetness of Water (Oprah's Book Club): A Novel
Author: by Nathan Harris
AN OPRAH’S BOOK CLUB PICKIn the spirit of The Known World and The Underground Railroad, a miraculous debut (Washington Post) and a towering achievement of imagination (CBS This Morning)about the unlikely bond between two freedmen who are brothers and the Georgia farmer whose alliance will alter their lives, and his, foreverfrom a storyteller with bountiful insight and assurance (Kirkus)A July Indie Next PickIn the waning days of the Civil War, brothers Prentiss and Landryfreed by the Emancipation Proclamationseek refuge on the homestead of George Walker and his wife, Isabelle.
The Walkers, wracked by the loss of their only son to the war, hire the brothers to work their farm, hoping through an unexpected friendship to stanch their grief. Prentiss and Landry, meanwhile, plan to save money for the journey north and a chance to reunite with their mother, who was sold away when they were boys.
Parallel to their story runs a forbidden romance between two Confederate soldiers. The young men, recently returned from the war to the town of Old Ox, hold their trysts in the woods. But when their secret is discovered, the resulting chaos, including a murder, unleashes convulsive repercussions on the entire community.
2. The Secret Life of Bees
Author: by Sue Monk Kidd
The multi-million bestselling novel about a young girl’s journey towards healing and the transforming power of love, from the award-winning author of The Invention of Wings and The Book of Longings Set in South Carolina in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of Lily Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed.
When Lily’s fierce-hearted black “stand-in mother,” Rosaleen, insults three of the deepest racists in town, Lily decides to spring them both free. They escape to Tiburon, South Carolina-a town that holds the secret to her mother’s past. Taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sister, Lily is introduced to their mesmerizing world of bees and honey, and the Black Madonna.
This is a remarkable novel about divine female power, a story that women will share and pass on to their daughters for years to come.
Author: by Yaa Gyasi
Ghana, eighteenth century: two half sisters are born into different villages, each unaware of the other. One will marry an Englishman and lead a life of comfort in the palatial rooms of the Cape Coast Castle. The other will be captured in a raid on her village, imprisoned in the very same castle, and sold into slavery.
One of Oprah’s Best Books of the Year and a PEN/Hemingway award winner, Homegoing follows the parallel paths of these sisters and their descendants through eight generations: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem.
Yaa Gyasi’s extraordinary novel illuminates slavery’s troubled legacy both for those who were taken and those who stayedand shows how the memory of captivity has been inscribed on the soul of our nation. A New York Times Notable Book
4. Their Eyes Were Watching God
Author: by Zora Neale Hurston
A PBS Great American Read Top 100 PickA deeply soulful novel that comprehends love and cruelty, and separates the big people from the small of heart, without ever losing sympathy for those unfortunates who don’t know how to live properly. Zadie SmithOne of the most important and enduring books of the twentieth century, Their Eyes Were Watching God brings to life a Southern love story with the wit and pathos found only in the writing of Zora Neale Hurston.
Out of print for almost thirty yearsdue largely to initial audiences’ rejection of its strong black female protagonistHurston’s classic has since its 1978 reissue become perhaps the most widely read and highly acclaimed novel in the canon of African-American literature.
5. The Underground Railroad: A Novel
Author: by Colson Whitehead
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, this #1 New York Times bestseller chronicles a young slave’s adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. Now an original Amazon Prime Video series directed by Barry Jenkins.
Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. An outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is on the cusp of womanhoodwhere greater pain awaits. And so when Caesar, a slave who has recently arrived from Virginia, urges her to join him on the Underground Railroad, she seizes the opportunity and escapes with him.
In Colson Whitehead’s ingenious conception, the Underground Railroad is no mere metaphor: engineers and conductors operate a secret network of actual tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil. Cora embarks on a harrowing flight from one state to the next, encountering, like Gulliver, strange yet familiar iterations of her own world at each stop.
As Whitehead brilliantly re-creates the terrors of the antebellum era, he weaves in the saga of our nation, from the brutal abduction of Africans to the unfulfilled promises of the present day. The Underground Railroad is both the gripping tale of one woman’s will to escape the horrors of bondageand a powerful meditation on the history we all share.
6. Deacon King Kong: Barack Obama Favourite Read & Oprah's Book Club Pick
Author: by James McBride
June 11, 2020
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER AND OPRAH’S BOOK CLUB PICK CHOSEN BY BARACK OBAMA AS A FAVOURITE READ TOP TEN BOOKS OF THE YEAR, NEW YORK TIMES & WASHINGTON POST’Brilliantly imagined, larger than life, a tragicomedic epic of intertwined lives set in a vividly rendered neighbourhood in Brooklyn in the 1960s.’ JOYCE CAROL OATES’Deeply felt, beautifully written and profoundly humane.’ JUNOT DIAZ, New York Times Book ReviewThe year is 1969.
In a housing project in south Brooklyn, a shambling old church deacon called Sportcoat shoots – for no apparent reason – the local drug-dealer who used to be part of the church’s baseball team. The repercussions of that moment draw in the whole community, from Sportcoat’s best friend – Hot Sausage – to the local Italian mobsters, the police (corrupt and otherwise), and the stalwart ladies of the Five Ends Baptist Church.
DEACON KING KONG is a book about a community under threat, about the ways people pull together in an age when the old rules are being rewritten. It is very funny in places, and heartbreaking in others. From a prize-winning storyteller, this New York Times bestseller shows us that not all secrets are meant to be hidden, and that the communities we build are fragile but vital.
7. The Good Lord Bird: A Novel
Author: by James McBride
August 20, 2013
Now a Showtime limited series starring Ethan Hawke and Daveed DiggsWinner of the National Book Award for FictionFrom the bestselling author of Deacon King Kong (an Oprah Book Club pick) and The Color of Water comes the story of a young boy born a slave who joins John Brown’s antislavery crusadeand who must pass as a girl to survive.
Henry Shackleford is a young slave living in the Kansas Territory in 1856-a battleground between anti- and pro-slavery forces-when legendary abolitionist John Brown arrives. When an argument between Brown and Henry’s master turns violent, Henry is forced to leave town-along with Brown, who believes Henry to be a girl and his good luck charm.
Over the ensuing months, Henry, whom Brown nicknames Little Onion, conceals his true identity to stay alive. Eventually Brown sweeps him into the historic raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859-one of the great catalysts for the Civil War. An absorbing mixture of history and imagination, and told with McBride’s meticulous eye for detail and character, The Good Lord Bird is both a rousing adventure and a moving exploration of identity and survival.
8. The Water Dancer: A Novel
Author: by Ta-Nehisi Coates
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER OPRAH’S BOOK CLUB PICK From the National Book Awardwinning author of Between the World and Me, a boldly conjured debut novel about a magical gift, a devastating loss, and an underground war for freedom. This potent book about America’s most disgraceful sin establishes [Ta-Nehisi Coates] as a first-rate novelist.
San Francisco ChronicleIN DEVELOPMENT AS A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE Adapted by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Kamilah Forbes, produced by MGM, Plan B, and Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo FilmsNOMINATED FOR THE NAACP IMAGE AWARD NAMED ONE OF PASTE’S BEST NOVELS OF THE DECADE NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Time NPR The Washington Post Chicago Tribune Vanity Fair Esquire Good Housekeeping Paste Town & Country The New York Public Library Kirkus Reviews Library Journal Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage.
When his mother was sold away, Hiram was robbed of all memory of herbut was gifted with a mysterious power. Years later, when Hiram almost drowns in a river, that same power saves his life. This brush with death births an urgency in Hiram and a daring scheme: to escape from the only home he’s ever known.
9. The Indigo Girl: A Novel
Author: by Natasha Boyd
October 3, 2017
The year is 1739.Eliza Lucas is sixteen years old when her father leaves her in charge of their family’s three plantations in rural South Carolina and then proceeds to bleed the estates dry in pursuit of his military ambitions. Tensions with the British, and with the Spanish in Florida, just a short way down the coast, are rising, and slaves are starting to become restless.
Her mother wants nothing more than for their South Carolina endeavor to fail so they can go back to England. Soon her family is in danger of losing everything. Upon hearing how much the French pay for indigo dye, Eliza believes it’s the key to their salvation.
But everyone tells her it’s impossible, and no one will share the secret to making it. Thwarted at nearly every turn, even by her own family, Eliza finds that her only allies are an aging horticulturalist, an older and married gentleman lawyer, and a slave with whom she strikes a dangerous deal: teach her the intricate thousand-year-old secret process of making indigo dye and in returnagainst the laws of the dayshe will teach the slaves to read.
10. Yellow Wife: A Novel
Author: by Sadeqa Johnson
January 12, 2021
A fully immersive, intricately crafted story inspired by the pages of history. In Pheby, Sadeqa Johnson has created a woman whose struggle to survive and to protect the ones she loves will have readers turning the pages as fast as their fingers can fly.Simply enthralling.
Lisa Wingate, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours Called “wholly engrossing” by New York Times bestselling author Kathleen Grissom, this harrowing story follows an enslaved woman forced to barter love and freedom while living in the most infamous slave jail in Virginia.
Born on a plantation in Charles City, Virginia, Pheby Delores Brown has lived a relatively sheltered life. Shielded by her mother’s position as the estate’s medicine woman and cherished by the Master’s sister, she is set apart from the others on the plantation, belonging to neither world.
She’d been promised freedom on her eighteenth birthday, but instead of the idyllic life she imagined with her true love, Essex Henry, Pheby is forced to leave the only home she has ever known. She unexpectedly finds herself thrust into the bowels of slavery at the infamous Devil’s Half Acre, a jail in Richmond, Virginia, where the enslaved are broken, tortured, and sold every day.
The Invention of Wings
Author: by Sue Monk Kidd
From the celebrated author of The Secret Life of Bees and the forthcoming novel The Book of Longings, a novel about two unforgettable American women. Writing at the height of her narrative and imaginative gifts, Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a voice in the world.
Hetty Handful Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.
Kidd’s sweeping novel is set in motion on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, when she is given ownership of ten year old Handful, who is to be her handmaid. We follow their remarkable journeys over the next thirty five years, as both strive for a life of their own, dramatically shaping each other’s destinies and forming a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement and the uneasy ways of love.
12. The Help
Author: by Kathryn Stockett
The #1 New York Times bestselling novel and basis for the Academy Award-winning filma timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’tnominated as one of America’s best-loved novels by PBS’s The Great American Read.
Aibileen is a black maid in 1962 Jackson, Mississippi, who’s always taken orders quietly, but lately she’s unable to hold her bitterness back. Her friend Minny has never held her tongue but now must somehow keep secrets about her employer that leave her speechless.
White socialite Skeeter just graduated college. She’s full of ambition, but without a husband, she’s considered a failure. Together, these seemingly different women join together to write a tell-all book about work as a black maid in the South, that could forever alter their destinies and the life of a small town…
13. Libertie: A Novel
Author: by Kaitlyn Greenidge
Named One of the Most-Anticipated Books of 2021 by:O, The Oprah Magazine, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Time, The Millions, Refinery29, Publishers Lunch, BuzzFeed, The Rumpus, BookPage, Harper’s Bazaar, Ms., Goodreads, and more An elegantly layered, beautifully rendered tour de force that is not to be missed.
Roxane Gay, author of Hunger Libertie is a feat of monumental thematic imagination. Margaret Wilkerson Sexton, The New York Times Book ReviewThis is one of the most thoughtful and amazingly beautiful books I’ve read all year. Kaitlyn Greenidge is a master storyteller.
Jacqueline Woodson, author of Red at the Bone The critically acclaimed and Whiting Awardwinning author of We Love You, Charlie Freeman returns with Libertie, an unforgettable story about one young Black girl’s attempt to find a place where she can be fully, and only, herself.
Coming of age in a free Black community in Reconstruction-era Brooklyn, Libertie Sampson is all too aware that her purposeful mother, a practicing physician, has a vision for their future together: Libertie is to go to medical school and practice alongside her.
14. Long Division: A Novel
Author: by Kiese Laymon
Scribner (June 1, 2021)
From Kiese Laymon, author of the critically acclaimed memoir Heavy, comes a funny, astute, searching (The Wall Street Journal) debut novel about Black teenagers that is a satirical exploration of celebrity, authorship, violence, religion, and coming of age in post-Katrina Mississippi.
Written in a voice that’s alternately humorous, lacerating, and wise, Long Division features two interwoven stories. In the first, it’s 2013: after an on-stage meltdown during a nationally televised quiz contest, fourteen-year-old Citoyen City Coldson becomes an overnight YouTube celebrity. The next day, he’s sent to stay with his grandmother in the small coastal community of Melahatchie, where a young girl named Baize Shephard has recently disappeared.
Before leaving, City is given a strange book without an author called Long Division. He learns that one of the book’s main characters is also named City Coldsonbut Long Division is set in 1985. This 1985-version of City, along with his friend and love interest, Shalaya Crump, discovers a way to travel into the future, and steals a laptop and cellphone from an orphaned teenage rapper called…Baize Shephard.
15. The Melanin Empath: Discover the Knowledge of Melanated Beings Born With Empath Energy
Author: by Jade Asikiwe
In a Melanated Universe there is much to understand. The ancient connection to the cosmos, and the side effects of knowledge(Two Manuscripts in one, includes: Melanin Gift of the Cosmos, and Empath Natural Healing for Beginners) Do you frequently experience deep emotions: both of your own and of others’ face sensitivity to sensory stimuli or feel as if you can sense positive or negative energies when you walk into a room?No need to worry.
You are not going crazy, and you are definitely not alone. You may just be an empath, a natural healer. Some people are quite sensitive to others, especially when dealing with crowds, which can drain them both mentally and physically.
Does this sound familiar to you? Maybe just a simple trip to the supermarket exhausts you, causing you to need an hour of alone time as a way to recharge your energy. Maybe you are particularly sensitive to superficial people, or find yourself almost repulsed by narcissists and selfish behavior.
It may also just be that you don’t feel as if you “belong in this world as if there’s something greater behind what can physically be seen. In any case, there is an answer for why you feel this way.
16. A Hope Divided (The Loyal League Book 2)
Author: by Alyssa Cole
Her prose is flawless. Her historical research is absorbing, and her characters are achingly human. This book is fantastic. Kirkus Reviews (starred review) A Library Journal Editors’ Pick Buzzfeed’s The Ultimate Buzzfeed Books Gift GuideBookish Autumn 2017’s Most Swoon-Worthy Romance Books List For all of the War Between the States, Marlie Lynch has helped the cause in peace: with coded letters about anti-Rebel uprisings in her Carolina woods, tisanes and poultices for Union prisoners, and silent aid to fleeing slave and Freeman alike.
Her formerly enslaved mother’s traditions and the name of a white father she never knew have protected heruntil the vicious Confederate Home Guard claims Marlie’s home for their new base of operations. Unbeknownst to those under her roof, escaped prisoner Ewan McCall is sheltering in her laboratory.
Seemingly a quiet philosopher, Ewan has his own history with the cruel captain of the Home Guard, and a thoughtful but unbending strength Marlie finds irresistible. When the revelation of a stunning family secret places Marlie’s freedom on the line, she and Ewan have to run for their lives into the hostile Carolina night.