The Community for Understanding and Hope Book Group meets this week for our annual potluck and book selection meeting. We’ve been reading together for nine years and have read 84 books!

We’ve been at this long enough that we sometimes forget what books we’ve read, so it’s helpful to have the complete list. Since I went to the bother of compiling this, I thought I’d share on my blog for other people looking books about race in America. The links are to reviews and round-up posts on my blog.

Books read by the CFUH book group as of August 2017

Summer 2008

A Bound Man: Why We are Excited About Obama and Why He Can’t Win by Shelby Steele

Life on the Color Line: The True Story of a White Boy Who Discovered He Was Black by Gregory Williams

White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son By Tim Wise

October 2008 – September 2009

Dreams of my Father by Barack Obama

Other People’s Children: Cultural Conflict in the Classroom by Lisa Delpit and Herbert Kohl

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum

Black Wealth, White Wealth by Melvin Oliver and Thomas Shapiro

When Race Becomes Real: Black and White Writers Confront Their Personal Histories by Bernestine Singley

Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome by Joy DeGruy Leary

Race Matters by Cornel West

The Color of Water by James McBride

White Guilt: How Blacks and Whites Together Destroyed the Promise of the Civil Rights Era by Shelby Steele

October 2009 – September 2010

Passing Strange: A Gilded Age Tale of Love and Deception by Martha Sandweiss

Modello: A Story of Hope for the Inner City and Beyond by Jack Pransky

The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories from the Underground Railroad by Betty DeRamus

The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family by Annette Gordon-Reed

Best African-American Fiction 2009, ed. E. Lynn Harris and Gerald Early

140 Years of Soul: A History of African-Americans in Manhattan Kansas, 1865-2005by Geraldine Baker Walton

October 2010 – September 2011

The Price of Admission: How America’s Ruling Class Buys Its Way Into Elite Colleges–And Who Gets Left Outside the Gates by Daniel Golden

The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson

The Black Girl Next Door: A Memoir by Jennifer Lynn Baszile

Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee

The Bondwoman’s Narrative by Hannah Crafts

The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

The Grace of Silence by Michele Norris

Little X: Growing Up in the Nation of Islam by Sonsyrea Tate

October 2011 – September 2012

Never Been a Time: The 1917 Race Riot That Sparked the Civil Rights Movement by Harper Barnes

Native Stranger: A Black American’s Journey Into the Heart of Africa by Eddy L. Harris

Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America by Melissa V. Harris-Perry

Unbowed: A Memoir by Wangari Muta Maathai

At the Dark End of the Street: Black Women, Rape, and Resistance: A New History of the Civil Rights Movement from Rosa Parks to the Rise of Black Power by Danielle L. McGuire

Color Me English: Thoughts about Migrations and Belonging Before and After 9/11 by Caryl Phillips

Miracle at St. Anna by James McBride

Searching for Whitopia: An Improbable Journey to the Heart of White America by Rich Benjamin

killing rage: Ending Racism by bell hooks

October 2012 – September 2013

How to Be Black by Baratunde Thurston

A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines

Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock by David Margolick

The Wake of the Wind by J. California Cooper

American Tapestry: The Story of Black, White, and Multiracial Ancestors of Michelle Obama by Rachel L. Swarns

No Crystal Stair: A Documentary Novel of the Life and Work of Lewis Michaux, Harlem Bookseller by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

The Good Food Revolution: Growing Healthy Food, People, and Communities by Will Allen

Telling Memories Among Southern Women by Susan Tucker

October 2013 – September 2014

Before the MayflowerA History of Black America by Lerone Bennett, Jr

Ebony and IvyRace, Slavery, and the Troubled History of America’s Universities by Craig Steven Wilder

Malindy’s Freedomthe Story of a Slave Family by Mildred Johnson and Theresa Delsoin

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

TransAtlantic: A Novel by Colum McCann

Sugar in the BloodA Family’s Story of Slavery and Empire by Andrea Stuart

Substitute Me: A Novel by Lori L Tharps

Some of My Best Friends are BlackThe Strange Story of Integration in America by Tanner Colby

Ain’t But a PlaceAn Anthology of African American Writings about St. Louis edited by Gerald Early

October 2014 – September 2015

The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd

Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela

House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

Autobiography of a People by Herb Boyd

Sundown Towns by James Loewen

Dust Tracks on a Road by Zora Neale Hurston

Devil in the Grove by Gilbert King

South of Haunted Dreams by Eddie Harris

Fragmented by Design by E. Terrence Jones

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

October 2015 – September 2016

Race, Place, and Suburban Policing by Andrea S. Boyles

Red River by Lalita Tademy

Black Man in a White Coat: A Doctor’s Reflections on Race and Medicine by Damon Tweedy

Fire in Beulah by Rilla Askew

Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine

Soul Catcher by Michael C. White

March: Book One and Book Two by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, Nate Powell

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Power Concedes Nothing by Connie Rice

Claire of the Sea Light by Edwidge Danticat

October 2016 – September 2017

White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg

Just Mercy : A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson

Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools by Monique Morris

Negroland: A Memoir by Margo Jefferson

Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome: America’s Legacy of Enduring Injury and Healing by Joy DeGruy

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Queen Sugar by Natalie Baszile

Mapping Decline: St. Louis and the Fate of the American City by Colin Gordon


All the Books #BookClub — 2 Comments

  1. Pingback: Books about Race in America – Joy's Book Blog

  2. I enjoyed Queen Sugar and was sorry it didn’t gain a wider audience, so I’m glad to see it on your list! I still haven’t read Americanah or several others on your list I’ve been meaning to read.

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