Kitchen Table Literary Arts presents…

Five Books by Black Women Authors to Explore

1. Dust Tracks on a Road: Zora Neale Hurston’s autobiography, published in 1942, takes us on a journey from her hometown of Eatonville, Florida, all the way through her college years at Howard and career as an anthropologist studying everything from turpentine camps to mambos and houngans in Haiti.

2. The Good House: A showdown between good and evil, intersections of life and death, past, present, and future. Tananarive Due’s contemporary ghost story published in 2003 will give you chills that last long after you’ve closed the book. There’s talk about the novel being made into a movie, which might make for an easy adaptation with the abundance of haunting images and unsettling scenes.

3. The Street: Published in 1946, this novel skyrocketed author Ann Petry into the national spotlight. The Street sold 1.5 million copies and is often cited as the first African American novel to portray the complexities of motherhood as a central theme. Petry’s work was featured in The Best American Short Stories of 1946 right before her novel hit the shelves.

4. Kindred: Octavia Butler, a foremost African American Sci-Fi and Afro-futurist writer, uses time travel in this 1979 novel as a way to traverse the difficult intersections of slavery, American history, identity, and romance. Yes. Time travel.

5. Meridian: This 1976 novel by Alice Walker invites you to follow college student Meridian Hill as she joins voter registration efforts during the violent Civil Rights Movement of the 60’s and 70’s. Falling in and out of love, discovering and challenging her sense of self, the main character is up against personal and social pressures as she tries to navigate the supposed rules of race and romance.