Hello loves! In honor of Black History Month, I’m writing up a recommendation post, featuring Black SFF authors to support. But, please remember that supporting Black authors shouldn’t ever just be a performative check-box, especially during the month of February. They should be celebrated, cherished and uplifted year round.
Black Fantasy Authors
Okay, so admittedly, this list is going to be a little more fantasy heavy than science fiction, because that’s the genre I read more in. But can you blame a girl? I mean, look at the powerhouse Black fantasy authors below and you can see that we have so many fantastic choices to choose from!
The cover of this novel blew me away, but reading it was an entirely different level, becoming one of my new favorite books of all time. I am finally going to be starting the sequel today, in fact, and I am so not prepared.
WHERE WE FIGHT, THE WORLD BURNS! 🔥
Author of: The Rage of Dragons and The Fires of Vengeance
So, as one of the members of the Sapphic Trifecta, I knew how I had to check out this book (especially after seeing Touraine’s arms). I was NOT prepared for the incredible story, the complex handling of colonization or how much this book would blow me away.
Author of: The Unbroken and The Faithless (forthcoming)
So, I was first introduced to Penelope’s writing with her Earthsinger Chronicles, which I’m still working through, but completely loved the first book, with it’s complex magic and fascinating characters. So, you can imagine my excitement when she has a new book coming out with Orbit this year! Plus, she also writes romance, which I really need to get my hands on!
Author of: Earthsinger Chronicles, Angelborn series and The Cupid Guild series (as L. Penelope), with The Monsters We Defy (forthcoming)
Suyi Davies Okungbowa
If you’re looking for a fantastic fantasy series inspired by the pre-colonial empires of West Africa, look no further that Okungbowa’s first in an epic fantasy trilogy, Son of the Storm. He also has written in many other forms, including: short stories, comics and for young readers, under Suyi Davies.
Author of: Son of the Storm and Warrior of the Wind (forthcoming)
Speaking of powerhouse writers, Callender’s writing has been legendary, writing in multiple age ranges (from middle grade to young adult and adult) and writing powerful, incredible books. Most famous for Felix Ever After, I was actually introduced to them with their adult fantasy series, Islands of Blood and Storm. I’m also a huge fan of his honest and vulnerable newsletter.
Author of: Felix Ever After, Queen of the Conquered, King of the Rising, King and the Dragonflies and more.
If you’ve only heard of one author on this list (which, hopefully not, because all of these authors are incredible writers), it’s probably Jemisin. A staple in both fantasy and science fiction, who has own both Hugo and Locus awards for her work, if you haven’t read her books yet, now is a great time to start.
Author of: The Broken Earth trilogy, The Dreamblood duology, The Inheritance triology and How Long ‘Til Black Future Month, amongst others
Black Science Fiction Authors
So, like I mentioned above, there are more fantasy authors highlighted than science fiction, but that doesn’t mean these Black science fiction writers aren’t worthy of your time and interest! They’ve all been on my radar for a while and I’m excited to tackle their works this year!
I won’t lie: I don’t know much about Nicky Drayden, except that every book she’s published, I’m interested in. The first book that caught my eye was Temper, but I own a copy of The Prey of Gods, which I hope to read this year!
Author of: The Prey of Gods, Temper, Escaping Exodus series, amongst others
Winner of numerous awards, including a Hugo, Nebula, World Fantasy Award and a Locas award, it’s not surprising that Okorafor is one of the staples of SFF. An African-based science fiction and fantasy author, focusing namely on Africanfuturism and Africanjujuism, you can’t go wrong reading any of her book series or comic books.
Author of: Binti series, The Nsibidi Scripts series, Who Fears Death and the Shuri comics, amongst others
I haven’t read Temi Oh’s novel, Do You Dream of Terra-Two? yet, but it’s another book that hooked me from the cover alone (and then the hook of human colonization in space gone wrong sold it for me). Then, when I saw other bloggers that I follow had enjoyed it, as well, I knew I had to get it. I can’t wait to read it!
Author of: Do You Dream of Terra-Two? and Black Panther: Tales of Wakanda
This is another author who’s gorgeous cover caught my attention, with her Master of Poisons (which, admittedly, is an epic fantasy, rather an a science fiction novel). It’s also so cool that she doesn’t only write, but also works as a playwright. Her recent novel, Redwood and Wildfire, has won the Otherwise and Carl Brandon awards.
Author of: Master of Poisons and Redwood and Wildfire, amongst others.
Thanks for checking out this recommendation list for Black SFF authors! It was excited to look through my bookshelves and highlight Black authors who I’ve already read or have purchased books with anticipation of reading. Of course, there are plenty more amazing Black authors to support! And, mine isn’t the only list you can use to find potential new reads. Also check out:
- Kate @ Your Tita Kate‘s 6 Black SFF Authors to Support
- The Quiet Pond‘s Black History Month blog series
- Amber @ The Literary Phoenix shares Black authors in both the fiction and non-fiction spheres
As always, please remember to support, promote and lift up Black authors year round, not just during Black History Month. And, if you have any authors not on this list you want to share, let me know in the comments!