Top Ten Books to Read This Black History Month

October is Black History Month in the UK, and we at Abodus have always made it our aim to be inclusive of all our residents. We know that the way to do this is to highlight important events such as Black History Month, and to take every opportunity we can get to educate ourselves and our residents on the importance surrounding these occasions.

This month, we have decided to reflect on Black History Month in a unique way— By compiling a list of 10 of our favourite books written by black authors. Read on below to find out which books made the list!


1. The Colour Purple by Alice Walker

Well-known as a powerful literature classic, this novel broke the silence around gender equality through the story of Celie, a black woman navigating a life of oppression and abuse to find happiness and liberation.

Read the Goodreads review here, and pick up a copy for yourself here.

2. Bernard and the Cloth Monkey by Judith Bryan

This beautifully written book tells the story of sisters Anita and Beth, and their disturbing recollection of the psychological suffering caused to them as the result of horrific family secrets. The novel itself is a rebellion against staying quiet, and it is a searing tribute to the human ability to survive.

Read the editorial review and get your copy from Amazon here.

3. Beloved by Toni Morrison

Inspired by true-life events, this book tells the story of a family of former slaves whose home in Cincinnati is haunted by an evil spirit. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, this novel is one of the most mesmerising and unforgettable novels of American literature.

Learn more about this book through an article from The Guardian, and get your own copy here.

4. The Fat Lady Sings by Jacqueline Roy

Both a delicate and touching picture of mental health, this book is an unforgettable story of two women discovering their own strength as they work their way through a system that has failed to protect them.

Read the book description here, and pick up a copy for yourself from Waterstones.

5. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

This novel is both moving and extremely relevant, teaching us all an important lesson about humanity and dealing directly with the impact racism has on society.

Learn more about this book directly from the author’s website, and get your digital copy of it here.

6. Minty Alley by C.L.R. James

The first novel by a black West Indian to be published in England, this ground-breaking story portrays society and social classes, as well as the circumstances in which we are connected to one another.

Read the Goodreads review here and grab your own copy here.

7. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

In her fascinating debut novel, Gyasi gives faces and names to the people who suffered inconceivable cruelties as part of the slave trade. This gripping story highlights the shocking legacy of slavery, both for those who were taken and those who stayed.

Watch this video from Gyasi to learn more about the book, and get your own copy here.

8. Incomparable World by S.I. Martin

Both funny and heart breaking, this unconventional novel follows the adventures of three African-American soldiers who find themselves outcast and wrestling with their freedom following the war.

Learn more about this novel in this description from The Bookery, and purchase a copy for yourself here.

9. Without Prejudice by Nicola Williams

In this legal thriller, black barrister Lee Mitchell comes up against evil powers dwelling in her firm as she defends banker Clive Omaritian on fraud charges.

Read the in-depth review of this novel here, and grab your copy from Waterstone’s here.

10. Becoming by Michelle Obama

This memoir of former United States First Lady Michelle Obama tells the story of where Obama came from and how she found her voice, and it provides a glimpse into her time in the White House, her public health campaign, and her role in motherhood.

Learn more on the book’s website here, and get your free digital copy of it here.


We hope you have enjoyed learning more about our top book picks in celebration of Black History Month, and that you have been able to add a few to your must-read list! If you have any favourites that aren’t listed in this article, reach out to us on Instagram and tell us all about yours. We will be sharing suggestions to our stories over the next few weeks, and we would love to feature yours!