Black authors are instructing us to be honest with ourselves and each other this season. Merging their own experiences with major news events (from the past and present), they are using fables and familiar themes to tackle the uncomfortable aspects of friendship, family and professional connections.

By presenting the value in anger, exposing our communal shortcomings, and rejecting performative allyship these writers are using fresh fictional characters and unapologetic personal narratives to remind us to protect our peace and tap into our personal power on the page. They are introducing us to bold women, bruised boys, and media powerhouses in their bold works.

See 19 books featuring voices we can’t wait to curl up with (and learn from) this fall below.