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Well-Read Black Girl Festival Picks

Well-Read Black Girl Festival Picks

The Well-Read Black Girl Festival runs from October 26th to 30th and celebrates "Five Years of Shining a Light on Black Brilliance" virtually. Check out the WRBG Festival audiobook picks and register online to hear speakers like Gabrielle Union, Tia Williams, Leah Johnson, Deesha Philyaw, and more of the authors below!

Playlist Tags: genre: African-American Voices fiction african american authors well-read black girl

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We're Going to Need More Wine

Stories That Are Funny, Complicated, and True

By Gabrielle Union
Narrated by: Gabrielle Union
Length: 7 hours 48 minutes

We're Going to Need More Wine

“I know what this book looks like, and it's true that it's a '90s celebrity's memoir. But the other parts of this book are so remarkable that to limit its description to that would be an injustice. Gabrielle Union is an honest writer and cultural critic. I'm ashamed I didn't know this until now. Her reflections on race, gender, and authenticity in an industry that values anything but are refreshing and ring true. These are the portions of the book that really sparkle on the page. Writer to reader, friend to friend, Union simply shares some of her stories, and I was glad to be a part.”

Lindsay Crist-Lawson image Lindsay Crist-Lawson, Joseph-Beth Booksellers
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The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois

An Oprah’s Book Club Novel

By Honoree Fanonne Jeffers
Narrated by: Adenrele Ojo, Karen Chilton & Prentice Onayemi
Length: 29 hours 48 minutes

If you enjoyed The Underground Railroad (Television Tie-in), then you’ll love The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois.

“At 29 hours this one might seem like quite a commitment, but after traveling the century with them, you’ll deeply miss the echoes of the voices of Ailey and Belle and even good old Uncle Root.”

The Country Bookshop image Angie, The Country Bookshop
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The Sum of Us

What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together

By Heather McGhee
Narrated by: Heather McGhee
Length: 11 hours 8 minutes

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD • One of today’s most insightful and influential thinkers offers a powerful exploration of inequality and the lesson that generations of Americans have failed to learn: Racism has a cost for everyone—not just for people of color.

“This is the book I’ve been waiting for.”—Ibram X.... Read more »

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It's About Damn Time

How to Turn Being Underestimated into Your Greatest Advantage

By Arlan Hamilton & Rachel L. Nelson
Narrated by: Arlan Hamilton
Length: 5 hours 57 minutes

“A hero’s tale of what’s possible when we unlock our potential, continue the search for knowledge, and draw on our lived experiences to guide us through the darkest moments.”—Stacey Abrams

From a Black, gay woman who broke into the boys’ club of Silicon Valley comes an empowering guide to finding your voice, working your way into any room you...
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A Knock at Midnight

A Story of Hope, Justice, and Freedom

By Brittany K. Barnett
Narrated by: Karen Chilton
Length: 13 hours 20 minutes

LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK PRIZE FINALIST • NAACP IMAGE AWARD NOMINEE • A “powerful and devastating” (The Washington Postcall to free those buried alive by America’s legal system, and an inspiring true story about unwavering belief in humanity—from a gifted young lawyer and important new voice in the movement to transform the system.

“An essential... Read more »

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Until I Am Free

Fannie Lou Hamer's Enduring Message to America

By Keisha N. Blain
Narrated by: Tyra Kennedy
Length: 7 hours 1 minutes

Explores the Black activist’s ideas and political strategies, highlighting their relevance for tackling modern social issues including voter suppression, police violence, and economic inequality.

“We have a long fight and this fight is not mine alone, but you are not free whether you are white or black, until I am free.”—Fannie Lou Hamer

A... Read more »

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Hurricane Summer

A Novel

By Asha Bromfield
Narrated by: Asha Bromfield
Length: 10 hours 19 minutes

"Author and narrator Asha Bromfield offers an engrossing performance of this coming-of-age audiobook. Bromfield's experience as an actress and her ease with Jamaican Patois will draw listeners into a story that has multiple levels of emotional intensity." -- AudioFile Magazine

This program is read by the author, and includes a bonus conversation...

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Dear Miss Metropolitan

A Novel

By Carolyn Ferrell
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
Length: 11 hours 12 minutes

Dear Miss Metropolitan

“This searing debut is loosely based on the case of three young women who spent years in captivity in a Cleveland basement in the early 2000s. Ferrell moves the action to New York City, but keeps the horror and grief intact. Told in fragmented bursts by multiple voices, the rage and terror of the victims is laid bare, daring the reader to look away. While fragile redemption is achieved, it is weak tea in the face of the abuses endured. A formidable first novel from a powerful, singular voice.”

Mac's Back-Books image Grace, Mac's Back-Books
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Rise to the Sun (Unabridged edition)

By Leah Johnson
Narrated by: Lexi Underwood & Alaska Jackson
Length: 7 hours 33 minutes

Rise to the Sun (Unabridged edition)

“Leah Johnson is officially an auto-buy for me. I honest to goodness could not stop marking this book, nor did I realize just how much I needed it. From the off, Toni and Olivia's journeys were some sort of catharsis, healing my soul even after only two chapters. By the end, my eyes were run over and my cheeks were salty. This one's for the musicians. This one's for everyone who's been missing the way live music grabs you and won't let go. This one's for the lonely-hearted and those who've been told they're too big. And believe me when I say, you're going to want to shed tears while listening too.”

Second Star to the Right image Britt, Second Star to the Right
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Sometimes I Trip On How Happy We Could Be

By Nichole Perkins
Narrated by: Nichole Perkins
Length: 7 hours 2 minutes

“Hear the dark liquor of her laughter rippling behind her sentences” in this magnetic memoir as it explores a journalist’s obsession with pop culture and the difficulty of navigating relationships as a Black woman through fanfiction, feminism, and Southern mores (Saeed Jones). 

A Roxane Gay Audacious Bookclub November Pick
Named "Most Anticipated...
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We Are Bridges

A Memoir

By Cassandra Lane
Narrated by: Cassandra Lane
Length: 8 hours 5 minutes

When Cassandra Lane finds herself pregnant at thirty-five, the knowledge sends her on a poignant exploration of memory to prepare for her entry into motherhood. She moves between the twentieth-century rural South and present-day Los Angeles, reimagining the intimate life of her great-grandparents Mary Magdelene Magee and Burt Bridges, and Burt’s...

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The Secret Lives of Church Ladies

By Deesha Philyaw
Narrated by: Janina Edwards
Length: 4 hours 6 minutes

The Secret Lives of Church Ladies

“Do not let this slim volume deceive you—these stories are powerful, fierce, funny and sad. One of the best audiobooks I've listened to in a long time. Stunning!”

East City Bookshop image Jennifer, East City Bookshop
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Revival Season

By Monica West
Narrated by: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Length: 8 hours 24 minutes

Revival Season

“In Revival Season, 15-year-old Miriam Horton's eyes are opened to the complexities of spirituality and the depraved nature of humans, including one who she admires the most: her own father, an Evangelical Baptist preacher who plans revival circuits every summer. After witnessing her father violently react to a man who questions his ability to heal, Miriam's world is turned upside-down. And then we have a front-row seat to the downward spiral of her father's confidence and his treatment of others. She realizes that her father has developed a God-complex, and that his healings have become unsuccessful because he has begun to believe in himself more than God. In the midst of her father's crisis, Miriam grapples with the discovery of her own gifts and the tension between wanting to use her gifts to do God's work, and her father's conviction that women are unfit for such work.As someone who grew up around Southern Evangelical churches, this book was a page-turner for me as I rooted for Miriam to discover her own unique gifts, and to use her voice despite being stifled by her father and the church.”

The Snail on the Wall image Allison, The Snail on the Wall
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Instructions for Dancing

By Nicola Yoon
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
Length: 7 hours 48 minutes


"A charming, wholehearted love story that's sure to make readers swoon."—Entertainment Weekly

"Nicola Yoon writes from the heart in this beautiful love story."—Good Morning America

“It’s like an emotional gut punch—so beautiful and also heart-wrenching."—US Weekly

In this romantic page-turner from the... Read more »

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