Five Authors That Should Have Been On Oprah

August 9, 2010  |  

Oprah is so popular that she’s cliché. Men who say they don’t want to marry, often make an exception for the Mighty O and anybody who has any commodity for sale would gladly trade a limb or anti-commercial inclination for just one mention from Ms. Winfrey.

Authors in particular have been gilded with the Oprah juice. “You get a best seller! And you get a best seller!”  Since 1996, a total of 63 books have the gift that keeps on giving, known as Oprah’s stamp of approval.  Oprah’s Book Club has selected classics as well as contemporary offerings. Notable authors on the list include Toni Morrison (four times), Edwidge Danticat and Pearl Cleage. Our girl Oprah has a lot of love to give, but even she can’t pick up every author worth noting. As Oprah closes out her last year on the Oprah Winfrey Show (We’ll surely see her on OWN, right?), we offer a list of five black authors that shoulda coulda woulda made the cut.

1. J. California Cooper

Cooper’s writing style blends emotional tales and mysticism in an elegant presentation.  Short story collections like Wide Stars Seeking Midnight Suns and novels such as In Search of Satisfaction are must-haves for any dreamy-eyed Madame.

2. Walter Mosley

Mosley’s noir tales are Hot, entertaining and smart. Madames are probably most familiar with Mosley’s Devil In A Blue Dress, which was made into a 1995 Denzel Washington movie.

3. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Still in her early ’30s, Adichie already has three published novels (Purple Hibiscus, Half of a Yellow Sun, The Thing Around Your Neck) and several short stories. The Nigerian born author often incorporates the traditions and culture of her homeland in her colorful tales.

4. Malcolm Gladwell

We’ve all spent hours oohing and aahing over Gladwell’s quirky stats and endearing logic about how the world works.  That 10,000 hours theory in Outliers gave everybody new motivation to work harder and do better.

5.  ZZ Packer

Packer is one of those authors who ends up being a friend in your head. Her writing in works like Drinking Coffee Elsewhere tells our stories in beautiful and often funny prose.

Madames, what authors/books would you suggest to Oprah if she decided to continue her book club selections on a television show?

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