11 Books By Black Authors To Add to Your Wishlist

Grab a BIG mug of hot cocoa, extra whipped cream! These 11 books were picked by our Elf Ambassador, Christina Imohokpomo, and are guaranteed to keep you by the fire all night long.  

Founder of Black Girls Read Books, Too, an online community of Black Womxn who share book reccos and reviews, Christina uses Elfster to help the 250+ member group to swap their favorite reads all year long. 

📚 Black Authors You Need to Read

Explore books by Black Authors you need to read in our Best Books By Black Authors gift guide. Add these books to your own Birthday Wishlist to share with family and friends so that you’ll get what you really want to read!

Book: Black Girls Must Be Magic: A Novel by Jayne Allen

Genre: Fiction

For Tabitha Walker, her grandmother’s old adage, “Black girls must die exhausted” is becoming all too true. Discovering she’s pregnant—after she was told she may not be able to have biological children—Tabitha throws herself headfirst into the world of “single mothers by choice.” Between her job, doctor’s appointments, and preparing for the baby, she’s worn out. But that’s before her boss at the local news station starts getting complaints from viewers about Tabitha’s natural hair.

Black Girls Must Be Magic book by Jayne Allen, Black author

Black Girls Must Be Magic | Amazon, $10.99

Book: Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

Genre: Historical Fiction

One of the most important works of twentieth-century American literature, Zora Neale Hurston’s beloved 1937 classic, Their Eyes Were Watching God, is above all a Southern love story sparkling with wit, beauty, and heartfelt wisdom. Told in the captivating voice of a woman who refuses to live in sorrow, bitterness, fear, or foolish romantic dreams, it is the story of fair-skinned, fiercely independent Janie Crawford, and her evolving selfhood through three marriages and a life marked by poverty, trials, and purpose.

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, black author

Their Eyes Were Watching God | Amazon, $11.26

Book: The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Genre: Classic Fiction

The Color Purple broke the silence around domestic and sexual abuse, narrating the lives of women through their pain and struggle, companionship and growth, resilience and bravery. Deeply compassionate and beautifully imagined, Alice Walker’s epic carries readers on a spirit-affirming journey towards redemption and love.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker, Black author

The Color Purple | Amazon, $11.89

Book: The Love Con by Seressia Glass

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Sometimes Kenya Davenport believes she was switched at birth. How else could a lover of anime, gaming and cosplay come from STEM parents? Kenya dreams of being able to turn her creative hobby into a career because she finally has a chance to make it big when she joins the reality show competition Cosplay or No Way.

The Love Con by Seressia Glass, Black author

The Love Con | Amazon, $12.71

Book: The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Genre: Historical Fiction

As Whitehead brilliantly re-creates the terrors of the antebellum era, he weaves in the saga of our nation, from the brutal abduction of Africans to the unfulfilled promises of the present day. The Underground Railroad is both the gripping tale of one woman’s will to escape the horrors of bondage—and a powerful meditation on the history we all share.

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead, Black author

The Underground Railroad | Amazon, $11.15

Book: Skin of the Sea by Natasha Bowen

Genre: Teen/YA Fiction Fantasy

Simi prayed to the gods, once. Now she serves them as Mami Wata—a mermaid. She collects the souls of those who die at sea and blesses their journeys back home. But when a living boy is thrown overboard, Simi goes against an ancient decree and does the unthinkable, she saves his life. And punishment awaits those who dare to defy the gods.

Skin of the Sea by Natasha Bowen, Black author

Skin of the Sea | Amazon, $10.85

Book: You Grow, Gurl! Plant Kween’s Guide to Growing Your Garden by Christopher Griffin

Genre: Non-Fiction

Seven years ago, Christopher Griffin was just beginning the plant parenthood journey with one small Marble Queen Pothos. Today, this Black Queer non-binary plant influencer known as Plant Kween tends to a family of more than 200 healthy green gurls in the Brooklyn apartment they call home.

You Grow, Gurl by Christopher Griffin, Black author

You Grow, Gurl! | Amazon, $14.99

Book: I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Genre: Autobiographical Memoir

Here is a book as joyous and painful, as mysterious and memorable, as childhood itself. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings captures the longing of lonely children and the wonder of words that can make the world right. Maya Angelou’s debut memoir is a modern American classic beloved worldwide.

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings | Amazon, $8.99

Book: Mystic Awakenings: Paranormal World Book Three by C.C. Solomon

Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy

This is Book 3 of 4 in C.C. Solomon’s “The Soulmate Saga,” tells the heroic tale of Amina Langston, who is part of a conjured superhero team tasked with saving all paranormal kind before it’s too late.

Mystic Awakenings by C.C. Solomon, Black author

Mystic Awakenings: Paranormal World Book Three | Amazon, $16.99

Book: Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

Genre: YA Fiction

Monday Charles is missing, and only Claudia seems to notice. Claudia and Monday have always been inseparable — more sisters than friends. But when Monday doesn’t turn up for the first day of school, Claudia’s worried. How can a teenage girl just vanish without anyone noticing that she’s gone?

Monday's Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson, Black author

Monday’s Not Coming | Amazon, $10.99

Book: Life, I Swear: Intimate Stories from Black Women on Identity, Healing, and Self-Trust by Chloe Dulce Louvouezo

Genre: Non-fiction Essays (based on “Life, I Swear” podcast)

A mixture of poignant essays, gorgeous photography, and sophisticated design elements, Life, I Swear is a chronicle of transformation and growth by and for modern-day Black women. Some of today’s most influential Black female voices chronicle their private journeys, offering testimonies of living through pain and joy.

Life, I Swear by Chloe Dulce Louvouezo

Life, I Swear | Amazon, $12.99

Book cover of Michelle Obama's The Light We Carry with image of her
Image of Colleen Hoover's book Verity on

Looking for more books you can’t put down?

Check out all of our book gift guides for popular page-turners and add ’em to your Wishlist. It’ll help your friends find you the perfect gift for your TBR pile! 

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About Meghan L 213 Articles
Meghan L has been elfing it since she joined the team in 2009. She enjoys coordinating exchanges, talking to organizers, and all things Christmas. Join her for an eggnog latte anytime at Elfster.com