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Reading Is Freedom

Tune into one of our handpicked Juneteenth recommendations. We promise you'll learn something.

Playlist Tags: Shelves Bookstore topic: juneteenth topic: african-american literature african american books african american authors black books

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On Juneteenth

By Annette Gordon-Reed
Narrated by: Karen Chilton
Length: 3 hours 44 minutes

Weaving together American history, dramatic family chronicle, and searing episodes of memoir, Annette Gordon-Reed’s On Juneteenth provides a historian’s view of the nation’s long road to Juneteenth, recounting both its origins in Texas and the enormous hardships that African-Americans have endured in the century since, from Reconstruction... Read more »

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They Were Her Property

White Women as Slave Owners in the American South

By Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
Narrated by: Allyson Johnson
Length: 10 hours 26 minutes

A bold and searing investigation into the role of white women in the American slave economy. Bridging women's history, the history of the South, and African American history, this book makes a bold argument about the role of white women in American slavery. Historian Stephanie E. Jones–Rogers draws on a variety of sources to show that... Read more »

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The Book Of Negroes

By Lawrence Hill
Narrated by: Khadijah Roberts-Abdullah
Length: 15 hours 46 minutes

From its first publication in 2007, Lawrence Hill's masterpiece, The Book of Negroes, has touched readers around the world with its unforgettable story. Now a six-part CBC mini-series starring Cuba Gooding Jr., Louis Gossett Jr., and Ben Chaplin, this beloved novel tells the story of Aminata, brilliantly played by Anajanue Ellis.

Abducted as an... Read more »

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The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman

By Ernest J. Gaines
Narrated by: Lynne Thigpen
Length: 10 hours 8 minutes

The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman has sold over a million copies nationwide since its publication in 1971, making the fictional character of Miss Jane so real many people don't know she exists only in the imagination of Louisiana-born author Ernest J. Gaines. Miss Jane is 100 years old when she is interviewed by an area high school teacher... Read more »

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How the Word Is Passed

A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America

By Clint Smith
Narrated by: Clint Smith
Length: 10 hours 7 minutes

"We need this book." Ibram X. Kendi, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How to be an Anti-Racist

The Atlantic staff writer and poet Clint Smith's revealing, contemporary portrait of America as a slave owning nation


Beginning in his hometown of New Orleans, Clint Smith leads the reader on an unforgettable tour of monuments and landmarks—those... Read more »

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Homegoing

A novel

By Yaa Gyasi
Narrated by: Dominic Hoffman
Length: 13 hours 10 minutes

Homegoing

“AN EXCELLENT LISTEN. ”

The Bookloft image Julia, The Bookloft
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Their Eyes Were Watching God

By Zora Neale Hurston
Narrated by: Ruby Dee
Length: 6 hours 44 minutes

“A deeply soulful novel that comprehends love and cruelty, and separates the big people from the small of heart, without ever losing sympathy for those unfortunates who don’t know how to live properly.” —Zadie Smith

One of the most important and enduring books of the twentieth century, Their Eyes Were Watching God brings to life a Southern love... Read more »

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Bombingham

By Anthony Grooms
Narrated by: Dion Graham
Length: 9 hours 20 minutes

Bombingham by Anthony Grooms is the powerful story of a middle-class black family living in a time of great unrest. Accepting the charge of writing a letter to the parents of a fallen friend and fellow soldier, Walter Burke begins to reflect on the effects that segregation has had on his family and the effect the Vietnam war is having on him.... Read more »

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The Other Madisons

The Lost History of a President's Black Family

By Bettye Kearse
Narrated by: Karen Chilton
Length: 7 hours 47 minutes

In The Other Madisons, Bettye Kearsea descendant of an enslaved cook and, according to oral tradition, President James Madisonshares her family story and explores the issues of legacy, race, and the powerful consequences of telling the whole truth. For thousands of years, West African griots (men) and griottes (women) have recited the stories... Read more »

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The Souls of Black Folk

By W. E. B. Du Bois
Narrated by: Mirron Willis
Length: 8 hours 32 minutes

"The problem of the twentieth century is the problem of the color line," writes Du Bois, in one of the most prophetic works in all of American literature. First published in 1903, this collection of fifteen essays dared to describe the racism that prevailed at that time in America—and to demand an end to it. Du Bois' writing draws on his early... Read more »

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Celebrate Juneteenth with Black-owned bookstores! Learn more