African American Lit by Linen and SAltThis month (Black History Month) I’ve wanted to write a blog post that dealt with my love for African-American fiction. While I love a good self-help or devotional book just as much as the next girl, there’s something about reading (or listening) to a fiction novel that’s a form of meditation for me. My love for African-American literature started in high school during the summers that I spent out-of-town with my older cousin Crystal! These summers with her shaped my life in a way that she will never fully understand. Coming from a small town, I was deeply affected by all that I learned during the time I spent with her and her husband, E.J. right outside of D.C. during those breaks.

It was during these times with Crystal that I read every novel that she had on her bookshelf! She had so many good books! I had never read any African American literature before. Once I began, it became an obsession. It all started with The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah. Then No Disrespect by the same author. As I delved deeper and deeper into the world of AA literature, I fell in love with Eric Jerome Dickey after reading Milk in My Coffee and with E.Lynn Harris by the 4th page of Invisible Life. And Zane is the reason Fifty Shades of Grey lacks luster in my eyes.

The reading didn’t end when I would go home. African-American literature made me fall deeper in love with my culture and my identity as a black woman during a time when representation of girls who looked like me was still basically non-existent. I’ll forever be grateful to my Crystal taking me under her wing and helping to mold me into the woman who I am today through fostering my love for books about our history and culture.

I’m always looking for suggestions to add to my reading list so leave me some love in the comments 🙂

With Grace +Love,

linen and salt email


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African American Literature by linen and salt

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2 comments on “Crystal’s Bookshelf: Why I Love African-American Literature”

  1. I love all your recommendations! Personally I’ve got Toni Morrison’s Beloved queued up in the list of books to read next. I’m pinning your list to check out your recommendations soon!

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