The Jubilee Reader Issue 10 - March/April 2024

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The Jubilee Reader

Recent books by African American writers, writers from the African diaspora, and on related topics.

Issue 10 – March/April 2024



In a story based on West African mythology, a woman meets a spirit and agrees to do one terrible thing for it, in exchange for the return of her beloved, deceased father.

Deus X

A former Detroit police officer investigates the suspicious suicide of a local priest while grappling with his own faith and a zealous representative from the Vatican.

The Dissent

When her wedding ceremony turns violent, killing her father, a woman and her sister vie for power in a vicious contest of strength and will.

Double Life

When her right-hand man is murdered, a successful real estate agent by day and drug queenpin by night is forced to take a more hands-on role in her illicit side hustle.

Even If the Sky is Falling

Six romance stories describe what happens to their characters in a world where they suddenly believe a devastating global disaster is imminent.

Every Black Girl Dances

A filmmaker known for making “Black trauma” movies flees her latest production to reconsider her career and deteriorating relationship with her producer.

Everything is Not Enough

Three Black women in Sweden fight their own personal struggles, including wanting to move to the United States and seeking a divorce.


Game On

A female gamer fighting for equal representation in video games accidentally starts an online movement and is offered a job by the handsome CEO of a game company.

In Their Shadows

In this sequel to BehindHerLives , a successful scam artist living two perfect, separate lives with two unsuspecting husbands receives a mysterious package that threatens to expose her.

Laws of Annihilation

After being diagnosed with terminal cancer, an FBI agent is assigned to help two NYPD detectives investigate a series of gruesome hate crimes.

Leave It to Us

When they inherit their grandma's South Carolina beach house, two estranged sisters reunite to renovate the home, resulting in a lifechanging month on the Sea Islands.

Like Thunder

A desert magician reunites with his best friend to complete the epic and mystical quest they started years ago.

Mama Said

These linked stories set in Kentucky follow a young woman and her cousins as they come of age, each struggling against their mothers' drug addiction.

The Most Secret Memory of Men

When a young Senegalese writer in Paris discovers a legendary 1930s book written by a mysterious author, he is forced to confront the great tragedies of history, from colonialism to the Holocaust.

Murder on Tour

Wrapping up her book tour at a prestigious book festival in her hometown, an author is faced with a real-life mystery when a bestselling author is accused of plagiarism and sabotage.

The New Naturals

After losing her child, a young Black woman decides to construct a separate society at an abandoned restaurant – but it doesn't take long for problems to develop.


Next - Door Nemesis

Two presidential opponents for their homeowner’s association sink to levels their suburb has never seen – until hate turns to lust, forcing them to reckon with long-ignored feelings.

The Other Princess

The story of an African princess raised in Queen Victoria’s court, based on the real-life story of recently rediscovered historical figure Sarah Forbes Bonetta.

Pay As You Go

A barber with an opaque past embarks on a quest for the perfect apartment, which sends him through the sprawling, madcap city of Polis and its endless procession of neighborhoods.

Perfect Little Lives

A woman whose father was convicted of murdering her mother discovers a shocking secret that could prove her father’s innocence or destroy her carefully rebuilt life.

The Princess of Thornwood Drive

A young woman struggles to make ends meet in the aftermath of a car accident that killed her parents and left her sister paralyzed, nonverbal, and trapped in a parallel fantasy world.

Sniffing Out Murder

When a school board trustee cuts the funding for a beloved pet-assisted reading program and then winds up dead, a children’s book author and her trusty bloodhound must prove the authorities are barking up the wrong tree.

Stars in Your Eyes

To create positive buzz about their new romantic comedy, a Hollywood bad boy and an up-and-coming actor participate in a fakedating scheme that soon becomes all too real.

The Sun Sets in Singapore

In Singapore, three very different women find their lives inexplicably intertwined upon the arrival of a handsome and mysterious man from Geneva.

Take the Long Way Home

Spanning seven decades and two continents, this story chronicles one woman’s remarkable journey through some of history’s most turbulent eras as she encounters four men who impact her life.


Technically Your s

When the man she’s been unable to forget comes back into her life, the acting director of a nonprofit is hesitant to trust her feelings, especially because a workplace romance could spell disaster for them.

The Unvarnished Gary Phillips: A Mondo Pulp Collection

Award-winning author, screenwriter, and editor Phillips gathers his outlandish and madcap pulp fiction into a collection that straddles the line between science fiction and noir.

Viper's Dream

A would-be jazz musician from Alabama becomes caught up in the 1930s drug trade in Harlem.

Warrior of the Wind

In this fantasy inspired by the pre-colonial empires of West Africa, two adventurers with bounties on their heads seek to escape the bloodthirsty reach of a revenge-minded emperor.

What Start Bad a Mornin'

When she encounters a stranger from her past, a successful woman with long-repressed memories of violent trauma learns what she is capable of when it comes to self-preservation and the protection of her family.

The Wildest Sun

Forced from her home in postwar Paris, an aspiring young writer embarks on a journey to Harlem, and then to Havana and Key West, in search of her father, whom she believes is Ernest Hemingway.

Wings of Red

A 28-year-old homeless MFA grad and substitute teacher with a felony record reluctantly realizes that mentoring and teaching might be a path forward for him.

The World Wasn't Ready for You:


Blending science fiction, horror, and fantasy, this collection expands and subverts the horror genre to expertly explore issues of race, class, prejudice, love, exclusion, and loneliness.


Arts & Entertainment

The Black Joy Project

Educator and activist Cruz presents a picture of how Black people resist oppression and thrive through joy in order to counterbalance


the usual representations of Blackness with pain, suffering, and violence.

Black Punk Now: Fiction, Nonfiction, and Comics

An anthology of contemporary nonfiction, fiction, illustrations, and comics that collectively describe punk today and give punks – especially Black punks – more chances to see themselves.

The History of Sketch Comedy: A Journey Through the Art and Craft of Hu mor

Building on the popularity of their Webby Award-winning podcast, the authors explore the history of comedy in a work that's part memoir, part masterclass.

Psalms of my People: A Story of Black Liberation as Told Through Hip - Hop

Treating the subject like sacred scripture, author Duncan traces the history of hip-hop, the artists, their lyrics, and the cultural context to tell the story of Black liberation in the United States.

Purple Rising: Celebrating 40 Years of the Magic, Power, and Artistry of The Color Purple by

This celebration of the 40th anniversary of TheColorPurpleexplores its ever-expanding legacy and reveals the crucial real-life experiences that inspired the novel.

Rashid Johnson

The most comprehensive publication to date on Johnson, whose painting, sculpture, photography, video, and performance have created a nuanced and iconographic body of work that connects literature, music, and art.

The Stree ts Win: 50 Years of Hip - Hop Greatness

A photo-filled commemoration of the birth, rise, and progression of hip-hop culture and its impact on American music.

We See Each Other: A Black, Trans Journey Through TV and Film by

In this look at transgender representation in TV and film, the author weaves together the history of trans people on screen with stories of their own life growing up and their formative experiences as a Black, trans journalist.



Becoming Ella Fitzgerald: The Jazz Singer Who Transformed American Song

A comprehensive biography of the singer that reclaims Fitzgerald as a major American artist and modernist innovator.

The Book of James: The Power, Politics, and Passion of LeBron

This social, cultural, and political look at the life of LeBron James shows how he uses his celebrity to give Blackness a place of cultural prominence, exposing the frictions between Blackness and a country not fully comfortable with its presence.

Dancing in My Dreams: A Spiritual Biography of

A religious biography of Tina Turner that maps her journey from the Black Baptist church to Buddhism and includes special attention to the diverse metaphysical beliefs that influenced her along the way.

In Sea rch of Gil Scott - Heron: The “ Godfather of Rap ”

A graphic novel following the author's attempts to track down Scott-Heron, the elusive "Godfather of Rap," for an interview that never seems to happen, while examining his target's music, controversial life, and lasting political and cultural legacy.

Lena Horne: Goddess Reclaimed

From a leading authority on Black cinema history, this is a comprehensive biography of Hollywood’s first African American movie goddess. Mingus

This graphic novel biography tells the story of the troubled life of Charles Mingus, his battles against racism, and the brilliant music that left an indelible mark on the jazz scene.

The Race to Be Myself

by Caster Semenya

Olympic gold medalist Semenya shares the story of how her victories were overshadowed by criticism and speculation about her body, and of how she became the center of a debate about gender in sports and our expectations of female athletes.


Danni's Juke Joint Comfort Food Cookbook

A culinary entrepreneur and Food Network personality shares recipes from her Southern childhood at church potlucks and her dad’s juke joint.


Goon With the Spoon

Drawing inspiration from both rappers’ catalogs, their favorite meals to cook, and E40’s Filipino food business, this cookbook contains more than 65 dishes, as well as stories and photos that bring them to life.

Juke Joints, Jazz Clubs, and Juice: Cocktails from Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks

The James Beard Award–winning author of Jubileerecounts the fascinating history of Black mixology and its enduring influence on American cocktail culture through 70 rediscovered, modernized, or celebrated recipes.

My Everyday Lagos: Nigerian Cooking at Home and in the Diaspora

An acclaimed recipe developer and food stylist takes readers on a culinary tour of Lagos, Nigeria, through 75 dishes that reflect the regional cooking of the country.

Current Affairs

Micro Activism: How You Can Make a Difference in the World (Without a Bullhorn)

Life coach Williams helps readers in identifying their “activist archetype” and mapping a personal action plan for engaging in small, change-making activities with potentially big impacts.

Standing My Ground: A Capitol Police Officer's Fight for Accountability and Good Trouble Aft er January 6th

A Capitol police officer provides a firsthand account of the events that unfolded on January 6.

Unmasking AI: My Mission to Protect What is Human in a World of Machines

The story of how Buolamwini uncovered evidence of encoded discrimination and exclusion in tech products and how she galvanized the movement to prevent AI harms by founding the Algorithmic Justice League.


Ann Lowe: American Couturier

An illustrated volume on the work, life, and legacy of Ann Lowe, a Black couturier who designed lavish evening and bridal gowns for members of America’s social registry.

Iconic Home: Interiors, Advice, and Stories from 50 Amazing Black Designers

This book tells the stories of 50 Black interior designers, shares their challenges and triumphs, and provides a behind-the-scenes


look at what it means to be a designer of color in the industry today.


Black Lives, American Love: Essays on Race & Resilience

A personal biography of America by Black anthropologist Maroon addresses its failures to its Black population, and provides a vision of what can be done to secure America's still possibilities of liberty for all.


Fool Me Once: Scams, Stories, and Secrets From the

Trillion - Dollar Fraud Industry

A renowned documentarian demonstrates how fraudsters are able to ensnare gullible victims, explains what makes perps tick, and explores why whistleblowers are so righteous.

It's Not You, It's Capitalism: Why It's Time to Break Up and How to Move On

In this illustrated guide to socialism, awardwinning journalist and policy attorney Jabali debunks myths about socialism and centers forgotten socialists of color who have shaped our world.

Make Money Move: A Guide to Financial Wellness

The youngest full-time trader in the New York Stock Exchange brings a fresh perspective to

personal finance, based on her understanding of how to increase wealth and an awareness of the generational and cultural barriers that hold people back from taking financial risks.


Journey to Financial Freedom: A Step - by - Step Guide to Achieving Wealth and H appiness

The founder of Journey to Launch offers her expertise about spending and saving responsibly, and the journey to financial freedom and independence.


A merica's Black Capital: How African Americans Remade Atlanta in the Shadow of the Confederacy

Chronicling how a center of Black excellence emerged in the former heart of the Confederacy, this extraordinary story relates how African Americans transformed Atlanta, and how the effects have reached far beyond Georgia.

Climbing the Rough Side of the Mountain:

The Extraordinary Story of Love, Civil Rights, and Labor Activ ism

The story of a couple who came together during the Civil Rights movement and made


fighting for equality and civil and workers’ rights their purpose for more than sixty years, overcoming adversity to bring about meaningful change.

Invisible Generals: Rediscovering Family Legacy, and a Quest to Honor America's First Black Generals

A descendant of America’s first two Black generals, who helped integrate the American military and created the Tuskegee Airmen, tells his family’s story across five generations, from post-Civil War America to modern-day Asia and Europe.

Our Secret Society: Mo llie Moon and the Glamour, Money, and Power Behind the Civil Rights Movement

Drawing on exhaustive research, never-beforerevealed letters and interviews, historian Ford presents a social history of Mollie Moon, charting her rise from Jim Crow Mississippi to doyenne of Manhattan and Harlem.

Teddy and Booker T.: How Two American Icons Blazed a Path for Racial Equality

The story of Booker T. Washington's entry into President Theodore Roosevelt's circle of counselors in 1901, and of the shocking and violent wave of racist outrage that ensued.


Hi storically Black Phrases: From “ I Ain't One of Your Lil' Friends” to “ Who All Gon' be There? ”

In this guide to Black language, journalists jarrett hill and Tre'vell Anderson translate beloved colloquialisms distinct to the Black community, dive into what those phrases mean, and explore how they are used.


For the Culture: The Power Behind What We Buy, What We Do, and Who We Want to Be

The award-winning marketer behind some of the most famous ad campaigns of the last decade discusses how cultural engagement is the most powerful vehicle for influencing behavior.

From Scrappy to Self - Made: What Entrepreneurs Can Learn From an Ethiopian Refugee to Turn Roadblocks Into an Empire

Former Ethiopian refugee Hagos shares the story of his plight in Ethiopia, his emigration to the U.S., and the business journey he took to become the owner of dozens of restaurant franchises.


I Hope You Fail: Ten Hater Statements

Holding You Back From Getting Everything You Want

Pinky Cole –founder of the Slutty Vegan restaurant chain – discusses how she became a successful vegan restauranteur.

I Wasn't Supposed to Be Here: Finding My Voice, Finding My People, Finding My Way

The viral sensation who helped raise more than a million dollars for a Brooklyn debate team looks back at a childhood crippled by addiction and homelessness, and at realizing his dream of attending medical school.

The Risk it Takes to Bloom: On Life and Liberation

Trailblazing Black trans activist Willis recounts the possibility of transformation after tragedy, and how complex moments can push us all to take necessary risks that lead to liberation.

Think You'll Be Happy: Moving Through Grief With Grit, Grace, and Gratitude

After her philanthropist mother was fatally shot in December 2021, the author shows how she turned the pain of her family’s loss into the fuel

that pushed her forward into a committed life of love and activism.

To Free the Captives: A Plea for the American Soul

In this personal manifesto about memory, family, and history, the author digs into the historical archive to understand who we are as a nation and what we might hope to mean to one another.

The Upcycled Self: A Memoir on the Art of Becoming Who We Are by Black Thought

The Grammy-winning cofounder of The Roots tells the dramatic stories of the four powerful relationships that shaped him, each a complex weave of love, discovery, trauma, and loss, illuminating the redemptive power of the upcycle.

When I Was Your Age: Lif e Lessons, Funny Stories & Questionable Parenting Advice from a Professional Clown

In this ode to growing up, getting older, and learning from your mistakes, SNL’s longestever-serving cast member shares essays and advice about parenting, positivity, and having fun.



After a Thousand Tears: Poems

Published now for the first time, this volume features 81 poems written by Johnson, one of the most prolific female writer of the Harlem Renaissance.


All Hope is Found: Rediscovering the Joy of Expectation by Sarah

The author of WomanEvolve explores the idea of hope, addressing how it can be broken, reframed, put to work, and spread.

The Garden Within: Where the War With Your Emotions Ends & Your Most Powerful Life Begins

Combining spiritual insights, discoveries in neurobiology, and her own research, licensed therapist Phillips explores Scripture’s ancient use of gardens to reveal what it means to truly flourish.

The Invisible Ache: Black Men Identifying Their Pain and Reclaiming Their Power

With assistance from psychologist Dr. Robin Smith, award-winning actor Vance seeks to revolutionize mental health in the Black community, providing this guide to help Black men navigate life’s challenges, reclaim mental well-being, and find whole, full-hearted living.

Make Your Own History: Timeless Truths From Black American Trailblazers

Collecting motivational quotes, historical contexts, and enlightening precepts, this celebration of the breadth and scope of Black excellence spotlights the principles of success exemplified by the lives of 120 Black role models.

The New Saints: From Broken Hearts to Spiritual Warriors

by Lama Rod Owens

A Buddhist Lama and intersectional thought leader shares a guide for those who would dream a more just, ethical world into being.


Self - Care for Black Men: 100 Ways to Heal and Liberate

A self-care guidebook filled with activities and strategies, designed to help Black men pursue joy, create connections, confront racism, and work through intergenerational trauma.

Se lfless: The Social Creation of “ Y ou ”

Social psychologist and Stanford professor

Lowery presents a theory of identity, arguing that there is no essential “self,” and that our selves are social creations of those with whom we interact.

The Vibration of Grace: Sound Healing Rituals for Liberation

Sound healer gina Breedlove shares insights, heart-openng stories, and instruction for rituals and daily practices including soul retrieval, grief letting, and connecting with ancestors.

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