It’s time to uplift and celebrate our black family!
Hey guys! I is back with a new post. It’s been so long so it means I’m already failing my bookish goals but I wrote four posts and wasn’t happy with any of them so choosing one and editing it took forever but you’re not here for that. You are here to know about my blackathon TBR. I’m so excited for blackathon. I think this is the most excited I’ve ever been for a readathon and that is because on my search for books that would fit these challenges I discovered some that I can’t wait to get into. There a lot more books that I wanted to include, that I also discovered, but there are only so many books that I can read in a month.
This readathon has six challenges but I will only be talking about the five challenges where a book needs to be chosen. The other challenge will be mentioned but will be completed on my February wrap up. Now let’s focus on the actual TBR. My TBR for blackathon, which is now a month long, has seven books, so two more than the number of challenges that require a book, but for some of these I couldn’t just choose one book. I’m not saying I will read these seven books because that might be too much for me but these are the books I chose for these challenges. Basically, this is not so much a TBR set in stone but rather a list of options.
Now let’s talk about the TBR. This read-a-thon was created and is hosted by three lovely persons and those are
1) Feel the love: read a book (any genre) featuring a romance between two black people (or one black person + a person of color)
For this challenge, I got Let’s Talk about Love by Claire Kann. I choose this book because the main character is black and the love interest is Japanese-American. So, it’s not a romance between two black persons but it does fit because the romance is between a black woman and a boy who’s a person of color. It also fits my bookish goals for 2019 since the main character is asexual and biromantic. Her asexuality is actually what got me interested in it in the first place. I really want to read more books about asexuality so that I can have a better understanding of it plus we need to support our asexual family. It’s one of my goals in life to read at least one book of every label under the queer umbrella and support queer authors which is why I said I was going to read a queer book a month so yeah this one applies. It’s also really diverse as I believe her best friends are very important characters and are in an interracial relationship (Feenie is white and Ryan is Filipino.) But I am a bit nervous ’cause I’m not the biggest fan of romance in books. And there’s also the fact that I’ve heard some not so good things about this book which just makes me even more nervous, but I do try to not let others people opinions stop me from reading the ones I want.
I decided to listen to the audiobook because in my experience they’re a great way to finish books that you’re not into. This means that it’s one of the books I’ll actually
Let’s Talk About Love is about a girl whose girlfriend recently broke up with her after she confessed she was asexual. Then while working at the library she meets Takumi and as you expect romance (probably) ensues.
2) Wakanda Forever: read a graphic novel or comic with a black or African main character.
For this one, I had a hard time choosing. I’m avoiding buying books just because they fit this read-a-thon’s challenges so finding one that I was interested in and either own or could find at my library was a bit of a struggle. But after a little research, I found one that caught my attention and that is Malcolm X: a graphic biography by Andrew Helfer (writer) and Randy DuBurke (illustrator). I’ve been trying to get into nonfiction and I think graphic novels—can you call them “novels” if they’re nonfiction?—are a great way to ease myself into it. I’m also really curious about who Malcolm X was ’cause I literally have no idea. I mean I know he was an important figure during the civil rights movement and that people either love him or hate him but apart from that I know absolutely nothing. I am so scared AND excited to read this book that I’m purposely ignoring the Goodreads reviews.
3) Hear Us: any work by a black or African author
For this challenge, I chose Becoming by Michelle Obama. I don’t know why I haven’t read this book because God do I want to. I actually decided to go the audiobook route because it’s narrated by her and, this might sound a little weird, I love her voice. I love when books, especially nonfiction, are narrated by the author so this hypes me up but it’s just so long! It’s 19 hours long!!! I mean, I love audiobooks so it’s not like I’ll force myself to do something I don’t want to do but Jesus this is going to take me FOREVER to read/listen to. But it’s time I get to it and this readathon will be the perfect way to force myself to read it. Since this book is a memoir I don’t think an explanation is needed.
And because choosing just one book was too hard, I also chose Stay with Me by Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀. This book is about a couple that met in college who’s trying to have a kid. Everyone expected the husband to have multiple wives but they had decided that polygamy wasn’t for them. But all that changes when a couple of years into their marriage her family appears with a young woman who’s meant to be her husband’s second wife. Then the main character finally gets pregnant and there’s jealousy, drama, and all those things fun to read about. I think that description is enough for me not explain why I want to read it.
4) Feel the Beat. Spoken word: listen to these 4 poems and share your favorite on social media or with a friend. Discuss what this poem means to you and why it matters.
5) More than Color: we house a complexity within us. Read a book starring an intersectional black character (black and queer, black and neurodivergent, black and disable)
For this one, there are also two books I want to read. Will I get to both books? Maybe or maybe I won’t be able to get to them at all. The first one I got is Don’t Call Us Dead by Danez Smith. To describe this poetry collection I’m going to quote the Goodreads synopsis “Don’t Call Us Dead opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police, a place where suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten and replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved here on earth. Smith turns then to desire, mortality the dangers experienced in skin and body and blood and a diagnosis of HIV positive.” I am so ready for this book. It’s poetry and I’m not sure if it’s modern poetry which makes me a little nervous since I’m the worst at reading poetry but my body is still ready for it.
The second book I chose for this challenge is Freshwater by Akwaeke Emez. THIS BOOK!!! When I heard about what this book was about I was like TAKE MY MONEY but thankfully my library had it so it wasn’t necessary. It just sounds so interesting. This book is about a Nigerian woman who develops split personalities “as a result of being born ‘with one foot on the other side’” and how after a trauma these personalities start taking control of her body while she “ fades into the background of her own mind and these selves.” Do I have to say more? I honestly love to read books from authors that aren’t American because their take on life is so divergent which makes their stories completely distinct to the ones I’m used to reading. It’s fascinating. This year I want to read more books written by non-American authors. Originally, this wasn’t on my bookish goals but I am adding it now.
6) In this together: read the group book
It was about damn time I read this book. I am an expert at buying new releases only to completely ignore them and read them months, if not years, later. This one is not the exception. It’s another book I’ve been so excited about yet I’ve never gotten myself to read, and that book is The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo. I haven’t heard a single negative thing about this book which both scares me and hypes me up. This book is about an afro-latina young girl with very strict religious parents that discovers slam poetry and uses it as a way to escape the world.
Well, that is my Blackathon TBR and basically also my February TBR. Wish me luck! I hope I’ve motivated you to participate in this readathon ‘cause I am so hyped. I can’t wait for February to get here ‘cause every book on this list sounds so effing good. Are you participating in blackathon? What’s on you February TBR? Comment down below. Thank you for reading and