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Bestselling Books in the Black Community, Long-Lost Novel from John Oliver Killens, and More - 7/28/2021


Daylian

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The long-lost novel from legendary writer and three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee John Oliver Killens, The Minister Primarily follows the story of Jimmy Jay, who in the 1980s follows his wanderlust to the fictitious African country, The Independent People’s Democratic Republic of Guanaya, to “find himself” only to be enlisted in a scheme to foil a would-be coup. Learn More and Buy the Book ▶

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2021 marks the 29th year for the Folktales’ Black Women’s Literary Society. They have read over 250 books! Folktales’ has been generous enough to share their carefully curated list with AALBC. For your reading pleasure, we share all the books, on their reading list, going back to 2016. Check out the books ▶

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One of the most prominent businesses in the global Black Book Ecosystem is, Africa World Press & The Red Sea Press (AWP & RSP). The sister publishing companies were founded by Kassahun Checole, almost 40 years ago. With offices in Lawrenceville, New Jersey; London; Eritrea; Ethiopia; and Ghana; AWP & RSP is one of the largest Black-owned book publishers and distributors in the world.

There are a universe of books written, published, and read by Black people, that are overlooked by mainstream media. AWP & RSP is responsible for distributing many of these titles throughout the African Diaspora. AWP & RSP has shared the books, with the greatest demand, from the booksellers they distribute to. Several are AALBC bestsellers. While these books are can be easily discovered in Black-owned independent bookstores, you'll struggle to discover them anywhere else. Please check out and share the list ▶

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Release Me: the Spirits of Greenwood Speak Edited by Phetote Mshairi

Poet Phetote Mshairi tells us about Release Me: the Spirits of Greenwood Speak. This anthology is the culmination of the synergy between contributions from an eclectic array of poets (including Poet Laureate of the United States, Joy Harjo and Tulsa based educator, activist, and poet Quraysh Ali Lansana), brilliant artists, masterful writers, skillful photographers, sagacious historians, and some talented citizens of Tulsa, OK. Watch the video ▶

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An Impulse to Keep: Greenwood Art Project by Greenwood Art Project

Jerica D. Wortham, Project Director of the Greenwood Arts Project describes the anthology, An Impulse to Keep. Published on the occasion of the Greenwood Art Project, an initiative led by artists Rick Lowe/William Cordova with Jerica Wortham, Marlon Hall, Jeff Van Hanken and Kode Ransom. The project brings together artists, residents, leaders, organizations, and businesses to raise awareness of the 1921 Tulsa Massacre and the destruction of its thriving Black community in the historic Greenwood District that included Black Wall Street, one of the most prominent Black-owned business districts in the United States during the early 1900s. Watch the video ▶

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One of the things I like to do when I visit a new city is to check out the indie bookstores. It is almost always a pleasurable experience -- especially when the owner is happy to talk shop. Such was the case at Boarding House Books in Claremore, OK.

Claremore, OK is a really small town in north eastern, OK. I have lived in an apartment complex with more apartments than there are people living in all of Claremore. Its most famous residents include Patti Page and Will Rogers… Read More▶

Three hours north-west of Boarding House Books, in Wichita, KS is Watermark Books & Café. The photo below is just one of the displays featuring books by Black writers I found in the store. The owner, Sarah Bagby, and I had a terrific conversation as well. Thirty minutes south in Broken Arrow, OK is McHuston Books & Bistro. I purchased so many books from this store the owner threw in a couple for free.

I’ve invested over two decades sharing information about Black-owned bookstores, but check out any indie bookstore you encounter, you may be pleasantly surprised by what you find.

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Dear Reader,

As always, you are why I’ve been able to make AALBC the premier online platform for books by, or about, Black people. Your paid subscription, book purchases, suggestions, engagement on the site, commenting, social sharing, and advertisements helps support AALBC’s mission to celebrate Black books and authors.

Peace and Love,
Troy Johnson
Founder & Webmaster, AALBC.com

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This Newsletter was Sponsored by Amistad Books
Consider sponsoring our eNewsletter or a dedicated mailing.
★ AALBC.com eNewsletter – July 28, 2021 - Issue #331

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