5 Black Authors Who Rocked My World as a YA
Tuesday February 28, 2012 at 12:00 am |

 

One: Francis Ray

I started with Only Hers at 13 or 14 and have devoured everything from her since.  Her romances taught me to set a standard when it comes to men and to always believe in the Happily Ever After because they are real and attainable.  Her books taught me about realistic expectations, love, and compromise.  I can’t get enough!

 

 

  

Two: E. Lynn Harris

This man opened my mind to a whole new world I never even acknowledged before.  E. Lynn was my first experience reading M/M fiction and though I knew about homosexuals, his books introduced me to a whole other side of it all.  Before reading E. Lynn I never considered that a gay man would pretend to be straight, with a wife and family, while keeping his homosexuality from his partner, family, and friends.  I never considered what is called the Down Low or the spread of diseases because these men felt so ashamed of their sexuality they felt the need to cover.  Blew my world wide open for sure and made me extra wary and cautious while sympathetic to the plight of gay black men because our community can be harsh about this.  Thank you E. Lynn for opening my eyes.

 

Three: Eric Jerome Dickey

I don’t even remember how I got into reading EJD but his books were fascinating.  They mainly explored relationships and friendships with women and between men and women.  They were my first real introduction of the dirty, trifling, and rachet things men and women do to each other when navigating this thing called love.  He wrote about everything touching on race, sexuality, friendship, and drugs.  Always raw and entertaining, I really need to find my way back to this author.

 

 

 

Four: Omar Tyree

I don’t even know how to tell you how much I loved his books.  On a whim I picked up Flyy Girl for my vacation read with my family when I was a teen.  I read the whole thing in a day and started back over.  Tracy and her friends and Victor were everything to me and I could relate to what she was going through as a teenager.  I had to have his other books and promptly fell in love with them too.  Each story was so different, but so excellent.  Flyy Girl and Sweet St. Louis remain my favorites, but his body of work was amazing to me, and so touching.

 

Five: Zane

LOL, I’m not quite sure what age I was when I first picked up a Zane book, but I was probably younger than I should have been.  Ahh Zane, so controversial but brilliant.  Zane taught me about women’s sexuality.  That it’s quite all right to be sexual, to have needs, and to have them appeased.  Thankfully I wasn’t a hot box and was satisfied with reading about the sexual exploits instead of accumulating a vast majority of my own at a young age.  But when I was ready, I was a little more prepared thanks to Zane.  After a while the focus on sex in these novels lost it’s thrill, but I’ll always be grateful to Zane for letting me know it’s quite all right to have urges.  And what I also love about her is that she started her own publishing company and made a way when there was no way.  GO GIRL!

Reflections of a Bookaholic
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Jade

Written by Jade

Jade is a book blogger from NC. In her spare time she loves to read and build and maintain websites. She has been reading since she was four and building websites since she was 16. SortofBeautiful.com was born on March 8, 2011 and is a fantastic merging of her two favorite hobbies. Enjoy your stay!

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13 Responses to “5 Black Authors Who Rocked My World as a YA”

  1. I don’t think I’ve read anything from these authors. I’ll have to check out some titles.

  2. La Toya says:

    Yes girl!!! Zane! I was wayyyyyyyyy too young to be reading her but I surely did read! That’s what she looks like?!?! She looks like she goes to Bible study every night, not like a steamy novel writer!

    And Eric Jerome Dickey surely kept me and my friends entertained when i was in HS. We passed his books around and learned how to be kinda sassy because of the scenarios lol! I should make a post like this too!

    ~ La Toya (La Toya, Literally)

    • Jade Jade says:

      LOL, a lot of people say that about Zane! I did love her books back in the day. And EJD…how awesome were his books! Glad to know I’m not alone.

  3. Alysia says:

    I only read one E Lynn Harris book and I didn’t realize how much I missed his writing till now. He has a wonderful story telling quality that makes you feel like you are in the mist of it all. Great post!

  4. I’m sad to admit, I don’t think I know any of these. Boo on me!

  5. Missie says:

    I love this post, Jade! It’s very informative on which authors I should be looking out for and why they’re awesome.

  6. I can’t believe I haven’t read a single thing by any of these authors before! Thank you so much for putting them all on my radar, Jade! I love being able to have an idea on where to expand my reading tastes to, and all of the books by these authors seem to have some really awesome themes in them! <3

    LOL and I love what you said about Zane's books! I find that a lot of YA books nowadays are really mature, so I think I'll be able to read her books like you did! 😉

  7. I read them all but Francis Ray. I too probably picked up Zane a bit to early but boy does she blow me away.

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