As we enter the days of summer, many of us are itching to get outside, but on those relaxing days when you just want to stay in, there are plenty of stories for Black authors to set the mood.
There’s nothing better than a good book, and there are a lot of nice reads that will be available in the coming months. National bestselling author Kiki Swinson is set to release Playing Their Games later this month, Leesa Cross-Smith penned the highly anticipated novel Half-Blown Rose, which will drop in July, and Carolyn Ferrell introduces herself to the masses with her first book Dear Miss Metropolitan, a finalist for the 2022 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction.
In addition to those authors, there are several other works from Black writers being published this summer. The stories include historical explorations of race in America, the journey of two women encountering new love, and the importance of everlasting friendship.
So, if you’re looking to immerse yourself in a good book, here is a list of the best new books to read this summer.
‘Playing Their Games’ by Kiki Swinson (7/28)
National bestselling author Kiki Swinson brings you back to the 1990s at the start of Yoshi Lomax’s law career, as her first elite white-shoe-law job puts a target on her back.
‘Our Gen’ by Diane McKinney-Whetstone (7/5)
Diane McKinney-Whetstone takes a departure from historical fiction to create Our Gen, a novel centering around a retirement community brimming with secrets.
‘Sister Mother Warrior’ by Vanessa Riley (7/12)
Vanessa Riley brings readers a vivid, sweeping novel of the Haitian Revolution based on the true-life stories of Marie-Claire Bonheur, and Gran Toya.
‘Dear Miss Metropolitan’ by Carolyn Ferrell (7/12)
The first novel from Carolyn Ferrell explores the intersections of grief and rage, personal strength and healing—and what we owe one another.
‘Big Girl’ by Mecca Jamilah Sullivan (7/12)
In her highly anticipated debut novel, Mecca Jamilah Sullivan explores the perils—and undeniable beauty—of insatiable longing.
‘Can’t Resist Her’ by Kianna Alexander (7/19)
Kianna Alexander writes an amazing story about two very determined women—in love, at odds, and risking a lot on a second chance.
‘Beasts of Ruin’ by Ayana Gray (7/26)
In Ayana Gray’s follow up to New York Times bestselling Beasts of Prey, Koffi’s powers grow stronger and Ekon’s secrets turn darker as they face the god of death.
‘Long Past Summer’ by Noué Kirwan (8/2)
Kirwan tells the story of Mikaela Marchand, a successful New York lawyer. After appearing on the cover of a magazine alongside her former best friend, things begin to get complicated.
‘Walking in My Joy’ by Jenifer Lewis (8/2)
In this collection of stories, Jenifer Lewis, shares the way she found the strength and courage to walk in her joy despite her personal struggles.
‘I Am Ruby Bridges’ by Ruby Bridges (8/2)
Illustrated by Hampton University Alum Nikkolas Smith, Ruby Bridges tells her story as never before and shares the events of that momentous day in 1960 when Ruby was the first child to integrate the school system as a six-year-old little girl.
‘Sister Friends Forever’ by Kimberla Lawson Roby (8/9)
New York Times bestselling author, Kimberla Lawson Roby returns with the perfect story of friendship.
‘The Women Could Fly’ by Megan Giddings (8/9)
The LA Times Book Prize finalist Megan Giddings pens a story about the unbreakable bond between a young woman and her mysterious mother.
‘Bright: A Memoir’ by Kiki Petrosino (8/9)
Bright: A Memoir, the first full-length essay collection from acclaimed poet Kiki Petrosino, is a work of lyric nonfiction, offering glimpses of a life lived between cultural worlds.
‘Perish’ by LaToya Watkins (8/23)
Perish, about a Black Texan family, exploring the effects of inherited trauma and intergenerational violence as the family comes together to say goodbye to their matriarch.
‘The Weight of Blood’ by Tiffany D. Jackson (9/6)
New York Times bestselling author Tiffany D. Jackson tackles America’s history and legacy of racism in this suspenseful YA novel following a biracial teenager high school hosts its first integrated prom.
‘Running to Fall’ by Kalisha Buckhanon (9/6)
A suspenseful, truthful look into the lives of women who drink to survive or just to cope, with a provocative narrator who carries readers along an emotional journey to acceptance.
‘The Mountaintop’ by Katori Hall (9/8)
This fictional story about Dr. King on the evening before his assassination, explores being human in the face of inevitable death.
‘Bigger Than Bravery: Black Resilience and Reclamation in a Time of Pandemic’ edited by Valerie Boyd (9/20)
An anthology of Black resilience and reclamation, with contributions by Pearl Cleage, Aunjanue Ellis, Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, Tayari Jones, Kiese Laymon, Imani Perry, Deesha Philyaw, Khadijah Queen, Alice Walker, and more