San Rafael Public Library

Celebrate Black Authors

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BOOKS BY FEATURED AUTHORS AND MORE

Roxane Gay

I think one of the most important things we can do as feminists is acknowledge that even though we have womanhood in common we have to start to think about the ways in which we’re different, how those differences affect us and what kinds of needs we have based on our differences.”

Yaa Gyasi

There is no amount of goodness. There is no amount of blazing brilliance that will exempt you from racism, and therefore, it is not on you to act in a way that will try to exempt yourself from racism, because racism is not about Black people.”

Kacen Callender

I don’t think a lot of our white queer siblings realize that they’re erasing so many of our unseen experiences and stories when they make general, broad, sweeping statements like, “There’s too much queer rom-com,” or “It’s time to move on from coming out stories.” They have been able to see themselves so much more than queer and trans people of color. It feels amazing to tell the story that I wish I could see myself in, and I hope there are many more stories like Felix Ever After to come.”

Octavia Butler

I began writing about power because I had so little.”

N.K. Jemisin

“The world is pretty unjust right now. Those of us that have grown up on the short end of the justice stick understand this innately and want acknowledgement of that reality, because so much of American society is dedicated to weaving the illusion that what you see is not actually what is happening. The endless excuse-making is part of our mythologizing these days. But fixing that is part of the job that science fiction and fantasy can do. That’s one of the things that I believe that this genre is ideal for accomplishing, if it chooses to.”

Gayl Jones

When you tell a story you automatically talk about traditions, but they’re never separate from the people, the human implications. You’re talking about your connections as a human being.”

Jason Reynolds

Trust your gut… and remember that the most valuable thing you’ll ever own, the most expensive thing you’ll ever have, is your story.”

Jesmyn Ward

But if I did not hope I would not be able to do what I do. But I don’t think it is an intelligent hope, I think it is a necessary hope. And maybe that’s what the people in our past did, my ancestors who were enslaved. It wasn’t an intelligent hope that they had for freedom or that their children might live different lives than they did, but I think they had to hope to keep going.”

Colson Whitehead

I grew up wanting to be the black Stephen King. I think the darkness of the world is terrifying. Some of my books try to find the humor or optimistic avenues we can take to deliver ourselves from the darkness.

Saeed Jones

People often call it ‘coming of age,’ which isn’t entirely inaccurate; I just tend to think of it as the story of ‘coming into self.’ My intention was to chart the journey to the point in my life at which I felt truly self-possessed.”

Jacqueline Woodson

For me, the key is survival. And I think about how people of color, primarily Black and brown folks came here. And we weren’t meant to survive. We were meant to work until we died. Produce other enslaved people who worked until they died. We weren’t meant to become teachers and lawyers and presidents and writers … all the ways that we exist in the world.”

 

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