2017 is coming to an end and I can definitely look back on it and say I have done more activities that bring me happiness, especially in the latter part of the year. More reading, more writing, more spending time with loved ones, more traveling – some of those things on my 100 Things That Make Me Happy list as I mentioned in a previous post, Journey To My Goals One Step at a Time.
Early this year, I set a reading challenge to read at least 10 books in 2017. This may not sound like a lot of books to many of you, but it was an attainable goal that I set for myself. I wanted to set a goal I could achieve considering my busy schedule.
Then a funny thing happened. I was asked to join a book club after I set my challenge. With our club having to read one book a month, my goal wasn’t so hard to attain after all. I actually have completed 16 books thus far, and I think I can finish 2 more that I’ve already started before the year is over.
Now we’re headed into 2018 and I’m setting my reading challenge to 24 books. I figured in addition to the books I’ll be reading for my book club, I should be able to read at least one more each month. I’m also excited because I am geared up and ready to participate in #Blackout2018 – where I’ll be reading nothing but African American authors this year.
The idea is the brainchild of vlogger Denise B. Cooper from her ArtBooksLive YouTube channel.
I was introduced to Denise via Instagram and started checking out some of the books she was reading. I ventured over to her YouTube channel to check out her videos and I really enjoyed them. She does live Booktube programs on Saturday and Sunday nights. I haven’t been able to catch them live, but she records and uploads the live programs, so I’m able to check them out.
I probably won’t plan out my entire reading selections for the year at once. I’m more of a spur of the moment kind of girl when it comes to reading because my mood can play a BIG ROLL in what I choose to read. That being said, I still have identified some books and authors I plan to at least consider reading next year (in no particular order):
- The Hate U Give ~ Angie Thomas
- This book is on many TBR lists and I’ve heard good reviews so I’ll give it a try.
- The Cartel 7: Illuminati Roundtable of Bosses ~ Ashley & JaQuavis
- I am a HUGE fan of this urban fiction series. I just can’t get enough of Carter Jones and Miamour. I’m also a fan of the audiobook narrator of this series, Cary Hite. Unfortunately, he’s not narrating this 7th installment, but I’m still looking forward to reading this book.
- Walter Mosley
- He is one of my favorite authors and I have five more books to read in the Easy Rawlins series. I intend on completing this series one day. 🙂
- Donald Goines
- I’ve known about Donald Goines for a long time, but I’ve never had the courage to pick up any of his books. (Yes, I said courage.) I had a co-worker long ago that started reading his books and kept saying, “Girl! You’ve got to read his books!” But when she started recounting some of the gritty stories she read, and in great detail I might add, I just didn’t think I had enough nerve within me to actually read his work myself. If my mind could conjure up such vivid images just by her retelling the story, how was my imagination going to react to reading it myself? Years ago, I wasn’t ready, but I think 2018 will be the year I dive head first into one of his books.
- Bernice L. McFadden
- I read “Nowhere is a Place” a couple of months ago and was blown away by Ms. McFadden’s style of storytelling. This book was such an emotional rollercoaster for me, but I enjoyed every minute of the ride. I am so eager to read more of her work.
- Jesmyn Ward
- What can I say? I haven’t read any of her books, but I’ve come across so many book enthusiasts that love her work. I might start with “Salvage the Bones.”
- The Fire Next Time ~ James Baldwin
- I recall as a young girl, my father introduced me to the phrase “God gave Noah the rainbow sign, no more water, the fire next time.” I’ve always known who James Baldwin was, but I’m ashamed to say, I have never read any of his work. I think starting with “The Fire Next Time” will be a good introduction to his literary work.
- The Supremes Sing the Happy Heartache Blues ~ Edward Kelsey Moore
- I was first introduced to Edward Kelsey Moore while I was browsing through the audiobook portion of my local library’s selection. I came across his debut novel, “The Supreme’s at Earl’s All-You-Can-Eat” and was pleasantly surprised. I’ve actually listened to the audiobook a few times. I even replay some of my favorite scenes in the book because the scenes are so fun. (Shoutout to Odette’s mama!) “The Supremes Sing the Happy Heartache Blues” is a follow up to his debut and I hope I have a continued relationship with his second book as I have with his first book.
- The Mother of Black Hollywood ~ Jenifer Lewis
- Ok, who DOESN’T like Jenifer Lewis? She’s a no-holds-barred kind of woman and I absolutely love to watch her on screen. I am definitely looking forward to reading her penned memories.
Well, there you have it. A sample of what I’ll be reading next year. I can’t wait for 2018 to begin. I’m sure my toughest decision will be which book to start with.
If you have any suggestions, please share.