Happy New Year, everyone!

New year, new books to anticipate.

Below is my annual collage of new books to anticipate this year. I’ve compiled 99 new African, African-American, Black-Brit and Caribbean books that look very promising. Please note – this list/collage is just a snippet of books by Black authors 2021 has to offer!

Hover over the images to read the blurbs and/or to pre-order the books.

(this post contains Amazon affiliate links)

MORE books to look out for in 2021:

[image via Goodreads]

Only on the Weekends by Dean Atta

The Blurb

Fifteen-year-old Mack is a hopeless romantic – he blames the films he’s grown up watching. He has liked Karim for as long as he can remember, and is ecstatic when Karim becomes his boyfriend – it feels like love.

But when Mack’s dad gets a job on a film in Scotland, Mack has to move, and soon he discovers how painful love can be. It’s horrible being so far away from Karim, but the worst part is that Karim doesn’t make the effort to visit. Love shouldn’t be only on the weekends.

Then, when Mack meets actor Finlay on a film set, he experiences something powerful, a feeling like love at first sight. How long until he tells Karim – and when will his old life and new life collide?

To be published September 2021

[image via KT Literary]

No One Dies Yet by Kobby Ben Ben

The Blurb

An unsettling tale of murder in a country whose dead slaves are shackled with stories that must be heard.

The Year of Return, linked to the 400th anniversary of slaves landing in the US, memorialised the many who died during the slave trade in Ghana, particularly at Elmina Castle, while encouraging members of the African diaspora to visit.

As Black diasporans around the world make the pilgrimage to West Africa, three African-American friends join in the festivities to explore Ghana’s colonial past and its underground queer scene. They are thrust into the hands of two guides, Kobby and Nana, whose intentions aren’t clear, yet they are the narrators we have to trust. Kobby, a modern deviant according to Nana’s traditional and religious principles, offers a more upscale and privileged tour of Ghana and also becomes the friends’ link to Accra’s secret gay culture. Nana’s adherence to his pastor’s teachings against sin makes him hate Kobby enough to want to kill.

To be published Fall/Spring 2021

[image via Zeba Blay]

Carefree Black Girls by Zeba Blay

The Blurb

Carefree Black Girls is an exploration and celebration of black women’s identity and impact on pop culture, as well as the enduring stereotypes they face, from a film and culture critic for HuffPost.

In 2013, Zeba Blay was one of the first people to coin the viral term “carefreeblackgirls” on Twitter. It was, as she says, “a way to carve out a space of celebration and freedom for black women online.”

In this collection of essays, Blay expands on that initial idea by looking at the significance of influential black women throughout history, including Josephine Baker, Michelle Obama, Rihanna, and Cardi B. Incorporating her own personal experiences as well as astute analysis of these famous women, Blay presents an empowering and celebratory portrait of black women and their effect on American culture. She also examines the many stereotypes that have clung to black women throughout history, whether it is the Mammy, the Angry Black Woman, or more recently, the Thot.

To be published October 2021

[image via Goodreads]

The Selfless Act of Breathing by JJ Bola

The Blurb

Michael decides to flee to America and end his life once all his savings run out. JJ Bola’s second novel is a story of millennial existential angst told through the eyes of a young Londoner who seems to have it all – a promising future, a solid career, strong friendships, a blossoming love story – but it’s the unbearable weight of life that leads him to decide to take his own.

As he grapples with issues bigger than him – political conflict, environmental desecration, police brutality – Michael seeks to find his place within a world that is complicated and unwelcoming.

Although he finds solace in the people that surround him, he alone must decide if his life is worth living.

To be published October 2021

[image via Anchor]

Woman, Eat Me Whole by Ama Asantewa Diaka


Woman, Eat Me Whole is a collection of poetry focusing on subjects including womanhood, the body, consent and the author’s Ghanaian heritage.

To be published 2021

[image via Miles Morland Foundation]

VAGABONDS! by Eloghosa Osunde


Nigerian writer and visual artist Eloghosa Osunde’s VAGABONDS!, is a novel of oppression and defiance among the people and spirits of Lagos.

To be published 2021


What new releases are you excited about? Please do share!

Check out the new books I highlighted in: 2020 | 20192018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015


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Reading Goals for 2016

Happy New Year, everyone! We are in the year 2016 – how crazy is that? I’m grateful I made it to 2016 and I’m quite excited for the awesome year ahead!

I will be participating in the (2016) Goodreads Reading Challenge, as usual.

But this year, I don’t have a set goal of books to read. I’m just going to read what I can and see how far I go. As my second degree, I mentioned before that I’m currently in a 6 year dental medicine/surgeon program (class of 2020…sigh, I know!) in Accra, so I’m usually busy with school work. I tend to read the bulk of my books during the one month Christmas break and Summer break (which is about 2 months). Since I read sparingly during the school year, once Christmas or Summer break rolls along, I usually binge-read and sometimes knock out 3 books in a month, depending on my mood.

During the school year, when I have time I usually reach for the slim African Writers Series (AWS) books or short story collections. A story or two a day or just allocating 1 hour of my time to sit back and read is necessary, as I can’t be studying all the time haha. I plan on keeping this reading habit I’ve cultivated. But I do have some goals I’d like to achieve this year…

I have 4 reading goals for 2016:

  • To read a wider array of African novels. I tend to go for West African (Nigerian, Ghanaian), Kenyan and Zimbabwean fiction. I want to make a conscious effort to explore this year! More South African, Congolese, Botswana, Sierra Leonian, Namibian, Egyptian, Somalian, Mozambican fiction – anything that’s different from what I’m used to. Of course I’ll continue to read what I like, but a little more African novel diversity would be more inclusive and a fun learning experience!
  • To read more poetry. I’m not really a lover of poetry, but I’ve come across some engaging, fun and comprehendible poetry collections that I’d like to enjoy this year, for a change.
  • To read at least 1 African romance novel and/or 1 African thriller novel. When it comes to African romance fiction, I’m eyeing the chic lit/romance series from Ankara Press as well as novels by authors Nana Prah and Kiru Taye. I’m not very familiar with the thriller genre, but Liberian author Hawa Golakai’s thriller novel – The Lazarus Effect is one I’d love to read. Ghanaian author Boakyewaa Glover also has a thriller called The Justice that has been on my radar as well. We’ll see!
  • Last but not least, I’d love to give back. Instead of always talking about books, why not give some away and share? I’d like to do 2 or 3 giveaways this year – YES, I want to turn you all into African book addicts too. *Fingers crossed* 🙂

No pressure though! Reading is personal, for everyone. For me, reading is a hobby where I enjoy myself and learn new things in the process; it’s never been a competition on how many books to read – quality over quantity. I hope I can achieve these goals by the end of the year – I would be proud. With these goals set, I think I’ll be reading with a purpose this year!

Have you set any reading goals and habits for 2016? Does school, work or other life happenings affect your goals? Please do share!

Stay tuned for more reviews/book discussions and other bookish stuff throughout the year!