Most of us are going out of our minds being cooped up in our homes. Aren’t you? Because I know I am. So how do we not stress about what’s going on in the world when we’re forced to stay home and think about it ALL the time? How do we escape when we can’t do the things that make us happy like go to a coffee shop, hang with our friends, or play contact sports? My solution, as always, is to read a darn good book! I gathered a list of the PERFECT books for Black folks who just want to forget about reality for awhile. They’re all books I enjoyed and would recommend!
In this scifi-western novella (yessss a short read to fly through!), we follow Creeper, a 13-year-old street kid who survives by stealing and selling important information to the highest bidder. One day, she overhears a particular priceless piece of information about a powerful weapon, causing her to embark on a journey that puts her entire life at risk. This is a book with a world that is similar, but still so different from our own. It’s a perfect environment to escape into, especially following such an unlikely main character. I loved that so many different type of people were represented, the flying ships are awesome, and there’s a major battle at the end that was exciting and satisfying! My only disappointment is that there won’t be a second one 🙁
I think this was on literally everyone’s most anticipated list. I’m not one for hyped books, but a friend sent this to me for Xmas so I figured, “why not?” The Starless Sea is about Zachary, a gay Haitian-American who is studying in college. One day, he finds a book in the school library that leads him to discover doors where one can travel to another reality. But people are plotting to close all of these doors and seal off these realities forever—and they’re willing to kill Zachary to make sure that happens. This is a great book for escapism because it is just REALLY well written. The fantasy worlds feel real and they’re so creative! The writing is poetic and full of description so its easy to imagine what is going on. It’s a long book but when I read it, I felt completely immersed. It’s amazing! I’m not done with it just yet, but I’ll tell you that the journey, mystery, and surprises that this book has wrapped me in was exactly the escape from reality that I’ve been needing. PLUS this book has one of my favorite tropes which is a story within a story! It’s set around libraries which is another trope I love and there are tons of fables for the reader to enjoy. You have to read it!
It’s NO secret that I love this book. I rave about it pretty constantly at this point. It’s a YA fantasy debut about a girl who has the power to see the history of any object she touches. She’s been raised and sworn to make the prince of the kingdom love her and execute him once that happens. Tarisai, our protagonist, travels to compete for a place on the prince’s Council of Eleven, where she finds her place in life and must choose: her old family or her new one. I have never seen such amazing world building in a debut YA fantasy. I was reading it going, “Are you kidding me?” The world and magic seem one hundred percent real to me. I loved that the magic brought the story to life instead of the writing.
Unfortunately, the release of Raybearer was pushed back to August 18th. If the coronavirus still has us cooped up inside, or even if it doesn’t, you should make this a must-read.
So those are the three books I recommend MOST during this stressful time. Make sure you are doing something every day to help you relax and escape. Remember, mental health is just as important as physical health, especially during times like this.
By Jesse E
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