September 6th is National Read a Book Day!

September 6 is National Read a Book Day, a day that encourages all book lovers to get lost in a book. With so many books to choose from, we suggest narrowing your search with a book from one marvelous HBCU alum authors listed below. Ranging in genres, there’s something from everyone in this list of 7 HBCU Alum Authors to Support this National Read a Book Day. Happy reading!

1. Nic Stone – Spelman College

Nic Stone, born Andrea Nicole Livingstone, is a Spelman College alumna known for her works of young adult and middle-grade fiction. Born and raised in a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia, Stone found her passion for storytelling when traveling to Israel for a summer in 2008. Her debut book, Dear Martin rose to #4 on the New York Times Bestseller’s list in 2017 and was named a finalist for a William C. Morris award.

Notable Works: Dear Martin, Dear Justyce, Odd One Out, Clean Getaway, Jackpot, Fast Pitch

2. Ibram X. Kendi – Florida A&M University

Credit: Jeff Watts/American University

Dr. Ibram X. Kendi is an American author, professor, anti-racist activist, and historian of race and discriminatory policy in America. He is a National Book Award-winning author of fifteen books for adults and children, including nine New York Times bestsellers—five of which were #1 New York Times bestsellers. Dr. Kendi was the youngest author to win the National Book Award for Nonfiction for his book, Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America. He also authored the international bestseller, How to Be an Antiracist, which was described in the New York Times as “the most courageous book to date on the problem of race in the Western mind.” Dr. Kendi was named one of the 100 Most Influential People in the world by Time magazine in 2020. He is also the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University, the director of the BU Center for Antiracist Research, a contributing writer at The Atlantic, and a CBS News racial justice contributor. Dr. Kendi earned his undergraduate degrees in journalism and African-American history at Florida A&M University  in 2004 and later earned a doctoral degree in African-American Studies from Temple University in 2010.

Notable Works: Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America, How to Be an Antiracist, How to Raise an Antiracist, Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America 1619-2019, How to Be a (Young) Antiracist, Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You, Antiracist Baby

3. Kwame Mbalia – Howard University 

Kwame Mbalia is a husband, father, writer, #1 New York Times bestselling author, former pharmaceutical meteorologist, and a Howard University alum. He is known for his West African mythology book trilogy, the Tristan Strong series. His debut middle-grade novel, Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky is a 2020 Coretta Scott King Honor Award Winner and a Children’s Africana Book Award Winner. Mbalia is also the co-author of Last Gate of the Emperor with Prince Joel Makonnen and the editor of the #1 New York Times bestselling anthology Black Boy Joy.

Notable Works: Tristan Strong Punches A Hole In The Sky, Tristan Strong Destroys The World, Tristan Strong Keep Punching, Last Gate of the Emperor, Black Boy Joy

4. Daniel Omotosho Black – Clark Atlanta University 

Daniel Omotosho Black is an author and professor of African-American studies at his alma mater Clark Atlanta University. He is an award-winning novelist whose works are inspired by African-American life, history, and heritage in the South. His books include The Coming, Perfect Peace and They Tell Me of a Home. Black is the winner of the Distinguished Writer Award from the Middle-Atlantic Writer’s Association and has been nominated for the Townsend Prize for Fiction, the Ernest J. Gaines Award, and the Georgia Author of the Year Award.

Notable Works: Perfect Peace, They Tell Me of a Home, The Sacred Place, The Coming, Don’t Cry for Me, Black on Black: On Our Resilience and Brilliance in America

5. Tiffany D. Jackson – Howard University 

Tiffany D. Jackson is a New York Times Bestselling, award-winning author of YA novels Monday’s Not Coming, Allegedly, Let Me Hear A Rhyme, Grown, White Smoke, Santa in The City, The Weight of Blood, and co-author of Blackout. A Coretta Scott King — John Steptoe New Talent Award-winner and the NAACP Image Award-nominee, she received her bachelor of arts in film from Howard University and has over a decade of experience in TV/Film.

Notable Works: Allegedly, Monday’s Not ComingLet Me Hear a Rhyme, Grown, The Weight of Blood, White Smoke

6. Jericho Brown – Dillard University

Jericho Brown is an award-winning American poet and writer. The Dillard University alum won the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry in 2020 for his collection The Tradition, which the Pulitzer board deemed “a collection of masterful lyrics that combine delicacy with historical urgency in their loving evocation of bodies vulnerable to hostility and violence.”  Brown’s first book, Please, won the American Book Award, his second book, The New Testament won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and his third collection, The Tradition won the Paterson Poetry Prize and was a finalist for the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. His poems have appeared in The Bennington Review, Buzzfeed, Fence, jubilat, The New Republic, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, TIME magazine, and several volumes of The Best American Poetry. Brown is also the director of the Creative Writing Program and a professor at Emory University.

Notable Works: The Tradition, Please, The New Testament.

7. Farrah Rochon – Xavier University of Louisiana 

Farrah Rochon is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling romance author. A native of south Louisiana, she officially began her writing career while waiting in between classes in the student lounge at Xavier University of Louisiana. After earning her Bachelor of Science degree from Xavier and a Master of Arts from Southeastern Louisiana University, Farrah decided to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a published novelist. Rochon is a two-time finalist for Romance Writers of America’s RITA Award, as well as the 2015 winner of the Emma Award for Author of the Year. Her June 2020 novel, The Boyfriend Project, was slated as a must-read Black romance novel by O, The Oprah Magazine, and was praised by Cosmopolitan as a Best Summer Read of 2020.

Notable Works: The Boyfriend Project, Almost There: A Twisted Tale, The Hookup Plan, The Dating Playbook