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Staff Recommendation List: Books Written by Women of Color

Title: I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban (2013)
Author: Malala Yousafzai with Christina Lamb
Genre: memoir
Book Description: This book is about the story of Malala. How she stood up against the Taliban when they took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan. Fighting for her right to an education. How that choice almost cost her her life when she was shot in the head at point blank range while riding the bus home from school. Her miraculous recovery and journey to eventually becoming the youngest nominee ever for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Author Description: Malala is a Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest ever Nobel Prize laureate.

Photo provided by Penguin Random House

Title: The Color Purple (1982)

Author: Alice Walker

Genre: historical fiction

Book Description: Story about a young girl’s life dealing with sexual trauma and overcoming her struggles being a woman of color in the south during the 1900’s. Though this book deals with heavy topics such as incest, sexual assault, and racism, it is ultimately about the friendships the women make with each other and how they deal with their trauma.

Author Description: Alice Walker is an award winning author and activist. She was the first African American to win a Pulitzer Prize for fiction with “The Color Purple” which also won the national book award.

Photo provided by Reyna Grande

Title: A Dream Called Home (2018)

Author: Reyna Grande 

Genre: memoir

Book Description: This story details Reyna Grande’s journey to become the first in her family to earn a college degree and to find her place and home in her adoptive country. Her struggles of feeling alienated from her family, new community, and trying to turn her degree into a career. It follows her journey from undocumented immigrant to award-winning author. 

Author Description: Reyna Grande is a best selling Mexican American author who came to the United States as undocumented child immigrant. 

Title: All About Love (1999)
Author: bell hooks
Genre: essay, philosophy
Book Description: bell hooks presents new ways to think about love and its interconnectedness in our private and public lives. She offers new ways of thinking about self-love that will bring peace and compassion to one’s personal and professional lives. She challenges the idea that romantic love is the most important love of all.
Author Description: bell hooks was an African-American author, feminist and social activist.

Title: Eva Luna (1987)
Author: Isabel Allende
Genre: magical realism
Book Description: Originally written in Spanish but translated into English, this story follows the life of Eva Luna, the daughter of a professor’s assistant and a snake-bitten gardener. Despite being born poor, orphaned young and working as a servant, Eva is a gifted storyteller who meets unique people from vastly different walks of life.
Author Description: As a Chilean American novelist, Isabel Allende is considered one of the first successful women novelists in Latin America.

Title: Vibrate Higher Daily: Live your Power (2019)
Author: Lalah Delia
Genre: self-help
Book Description: A self-help book about making intentional day-to-day choices that lift us out of mindsets, habits and lifestyles that no longer work for us and into ones that do. It is an invitation to engage with everything that feeds our soul while simultaneously letting go of everything that brings our energy down.
Author Description: Lalah Delia is an African American best selling author, wellness educator, spiritual writer, certified spiritual practitioner and founder of Vibrate Higher Daily School.

Photo provided by Milkweed Editions

Title: Braiding Sweetgrass (2013)

Author: Robin Wall Kimmerer 

Genre: essay, science

Book Description: In this book, Kimmerer combines her training as a botanist with her Potawatomi heritage to argue that “the awakening of a wider ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our own gifts in return.”

Author Description: Dr. Robin Wall Kimmerer is a mother, scientist, decorated professor and enrolled member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation.

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