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Source: Ida Harris / IH

If there were ever a perfect season to cuddle up to a good book, the fall season is it. While winter is a close second, the crispness of autumn air and the warm colors of the landscape during fall months hits just right. I mean—where’s the lie? 

That aside, the benefits of curling up to a page turner can’t be denied. Reading strengthens the brain, builds vocabulary, reduces stress and even helps folks sleep better at night, according to Healthline. —And above all those individual perks, it makes readers more empathetic to others, as stories immerse people into different cultures, circumstances and transports us to foreign lands. It’s not difficult to get lost or wrapped up in words so deeply that you don’t even want a book to end; especially if there’s a connection with a certain character or message. 

That said, MADAMENOIRE shares it’s lit picks for the month of October. Here are five Black books you need to get into. 


The Cancer Journals, Audre Lorde

Lorde shares the details of her bout with breast cancer.  Statistics haven’t changed much since Lorde’s journals were published. Black women are neck-in-neck with white women when it comes to diagnosis, but are 41 percent more likely to succumb to the disease. This text is as timely as ever as we encroach on Breast Cancer Awareness for the entire month of October. 

The Other Black Girl, Zakiya Dalila Harris

Many Black women can relate to tokenism and competition in the workplace but Harris digs deeper into the office politics that are wrapped around Nella and Hazel, the only two Black women in their workplace. 

For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide / When The Rainbow Is Enuf, Ntozake Shange

Shange’s seminal work originated as a play where women expressed their personal experience with violence, heartbreak and loss. According to TIME, suicide among Black teenagers and girls has recently risen almost 200 percent. The play has come a long way since its genius, having been adapted into a major motion picture that was directed and executive produced by Tyler Perry. 


From #BLACKLIVESMATTER To Black Liberation, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

It was recently announced that Taylor received the MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant” for her writing and dedication as a historian. 


Unbound, Tarana Burke

As the #MeToo founder says herself, this memoir has been a long time coming for Black women and girls, specifically those who are carry the trauma of sexual violence and assault with them as they navigate the world. This text is the book many girls couldn’t find in libraries and on bookshelves until now.


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