4 Essential Readings

Over the last two years I wanted to truly recognize the value and power within the pages of a written piece of art. So, I challenged myself to start reading more. I have always enjoyed books, but often I would start one and not even finish. So, I started with some well known Black Writers like Lorraine Hansberry, James Baldwin, Alex Haley, Ta-Nehisi Coates, and many more! These writers set the stage for my journey into understanding my world, my blackness, oppressive systems, my queerness, and the intersections I exist in. They gave insight, direction, and even tips on how to move about this society. Recently, I have gotten into some more current reads that I must share!

No Ashes In The Fire

Darnell Moore lays his life out before us in such a meticulous manner. His powerful use of words and imagery pulled me in close to the story. This book not only shares his personal journey but expresses how we as a society deal with those who exist along the margins. It challenged me to examine how I show up in spaces, how I impact society, and how an individual story can often be a shared story. As a Black Queer man this book is deeply personal.

How To Be An Antiracist

This piece by Ibram X. Kendi nourished my whole being. I feel this should be a must-read for every human on the earth. He is very strategic in how he dissects what it means to be racist and how we must work to dismantle it at its very core. He sheds light on the ways racist ideologies are leaked into the very ways of those who are oppressed. This book gave me an understanding of what it means to be an antiracist and how to apply antiracist practices into our daily lives. Again, I recommend this work for ALL HUMANS.

The Counter Culture Devotional

Often times faith is a battle for those who are LGBTQ. Our faith struggles aren’t always directly related to God but rather who man has taught us God is. We are taught how God thinks about us which lays a foundation for how many measure their worth and value. This devotional by Corey L. Scott is a critical tool to help you explain who God created you to be. Each devotion is easy to read and relatable. This work is equipped with daily reflections that take you even deeper into the journey toward discovering. This book has been beneficial in reaffirming my faith and the love God has for my black gay self!

All Boys Aren’t Blue

George M. Johnson gifted us with their story on April 28, 2020. I am currently still unwrapping this gift with the anticipation of a child of Christmas day. I can feel the passion that went into this piece as I read it. George shares their story in a very familiar way. At times it’s like we lived the same life, had the same grandmother, or recess time. I feel this book is critical for our young LGBTQIA community!

Take a moment and add these books to your shopping cart ASAP! I look forward to sharing more essential reads with you!

Tyrell Manning

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