What are the best books with African characters?

asked by Anonymous
103 contributors
38 solutions
  1. 14

    #1An Anthology of Somali Poetry

    An Anthology of Somali Poetry

    An Anthology of Somali Poetry is an African non-fiction book translated by Bogumil W. Andrzejewski. It is first published in 1993 by Indiana University Press. 

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    Keith Smith
    Written on April 25, 2018
    "Interesting insight into the Somali culture and point of view, by translated-to-English poems. A good book for curious people who want to open their minds to an amazing culture!"
  2. 12

    #2black girl love

    black girl love
    This book is a collection of stories featuring black girls who love other black girls: there are over twenty-five stories and poems where a black girl is the protagonist of intense stories full of sex, feelings and romance. 



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    Ni Zeng
    Written on April 16, 2018
    "Black Girl Love is a collection of twenty-five stories and poems covering life, love, and sex. Each chapter will leave you wanting more and more."
  3. 10

    #3As Fast As Words Could Fly

    As Fast As Words Could Fly

    As Fast as Words Could Fly by Pamela Tuck is a children's cultural book about an American-African boy who broke the social norms and addressed the racial barriers through his passion for writing.

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  1. 8

    #4Barren Lands: An Epic Search for Diamonds in the North American Arctic

    Barren Lands: An Epic Search for Diamonds in the North American Arctic
    This book narrates the story of two men, Chuck Fipke and Stew Blusson, who started a twenty-year quest to find a famous North American gem mine. Using South-African technology, they are able to find one of the biggest diamond mines. 




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    Lawrence Black
    Written on April 15, 2018
    "With the rise of modern technology, many leaders of the industry seem to claim that they have all of the solutions. This, however, is not always the case - as shown in this book. Using South-African technology two men are able to find a famous North American gem mine that has been lost for a fair amount of time. This helps to provide insight into how this feat was accomplished despite modern technology as a whole. "
  2. 7

    #5Bill Bryson's African Diary

    Bill Bryson's African Diary

    Bill Bryson's African Diary is a book by Bill Bryson that tells the story of his observation when he was in Kenya. He mentioned poverty and other major issues that the country is experiencing. 

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    Nancy Weaver
    Written on April 16, 2018
    "I could read anything Bill Bryson writes. I just enjoy his writing style. However, I didn't really enjoy this book. I guess with the title I expected it to be an African travelogue. It's more like an advertisement for CARE International. I don't have anything against CARE International and I'm happy that all royalties are going to them. It's just not the book that I was expecting. Also, I absolutely hate it when people use Africa like it's a country. He only went to Kenya. "
  3. 5

    #6Black Mamba Boy

    Black Mamba Boy

    Black Mamba Boy is an African historical fiction written by Nadifa Mohamed. This cultural fiction novel is first published by HarperCollins Publishers in 2010. 

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    Diana Chavez
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "The title is quite offputting, it seems like a racist insult, similar to Little Black Sambo. Once you get past that, this is actually a fairly interesting look at a different culture. "
  4. 5

    #7Blue Rage, Black Redemption

    Blue Rage, Black Redemption
    Blue Rage, Black Redemption is a true crime memoir written by Stanley Tookie Williams. This African-American non-fiction book is first published in 2004. 
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    Tammy Thomas
    Written on April 15, 2018
    "I think that this is a very well written autobiography from one of the founding members of the street gang, the Crips. It gives very thoughtful insight to what his life was like and why things turned out the way they did. I thought that it was an interesting read."
  5. 3

    #8Brown Girl Dreaming

    Brown Girl Dreaming
    Brown Girl Dreaming recounts the author's own experiences in growing up as an African American in the 60s. Written in verse, the poems portray a child's desire to find her place in the world.
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    Gilberto Domínguez
    Written on April 25, 2018
    "GOOD"
  6. 1

    #9Black Girl / White Girl

    Black Girl / White Girl

    Black Girl / White Girl is a book by Joyce Carol Oates that tells the story of a black girl and a white girl who happens to be room mates. They study at the same university and when the black girl got assaulted, the white-girl will help her. 

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    Janet Wong
    Written on April 14, 2018
    "This book is a really well written book about the complications of the different races.Two girls, one black and one white, were roommates at an university. I really enjoyed reading this book. It was one of those books that you just could not put down. I kept thinking, just one more chapter. That led in to more and more chapters. A lot of interesting material presented in this book. I also had a lot of emotion while reading it. I highly recommend this book. "
  7. 0

    #10Nightmare Along the River Nile

    Nightmare Along the River Nile

    Nightmare Along the River Nile: A Story of Twentieth Century Slavery is an African historical fiction book written by S.E. Nelson. It is first published in 2009 by iUniverse. 

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    Madison Williamson
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "Nightmare Along the River Nile: A Story of Twentieth Century Slavery is the best book you can read with African Characters. This novel is considered historical fiction and was written by S.E. Nelson. It was first published in 2009."
  8. 0

    #11Dark Rain: A New Orleans Story

    Dark Rain: A New Orleans Story

    Dark Rain: A New Orleans Story is a Sequential Art, Mystery, Crime, Thriller, Fiction Graphic Novel written by Mat Johnson and illustrated by Simon Gane. It was published August 24, 2010 by Vertigo.

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    Jesse Porter
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "I wanted to find a good book with African characters and found Dark Rain: A New Orleans Story. This is a story about Hurricane Katrina and has plenty of african american characters, but does not seem to have native africans. These are two distinct populations and the story does not include what I was looking for. As such, I cannot recommend this book for people looking for a specific type of people. "
  9. 0

    #12A Dry White Season

    A Dry White Season

    A Dry White Season is a classic fiction and cultural novel by André Brink that tells a story of Benjamin, the racial segregation, and the apartheid present in the South African society in the mid 1900's. 

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    Raúl Ramos
    Written on April 30, 2018
    "I love reading books that feature African characters because I find Africa to be such a fascinating continent. I recently finished "A Dry White Season" and loved everything about it! The characters were all great and seemed really relatable. The book was very well written and overall informative."
  10. 0

    #13Tropical Fish

    Tropical Fish
    Tropical Fish: Tales From Entebbe is a women's African fiction book written by Doreen Baingana. It is first published in 2005 by Harlem Moon. 
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    Melissa Bryant
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "This book has a very childish subtitle, but it shows a very interesting african story. It is a details book, that goes through different points to get to the final one. Very interesting and very unique in his kind."
  11. 0

    #14Beneath the Lion's Gaze

    Beneath the Lion's Gaze

    Beneath the Lion's Gaze is a fiction book written by Maaza Mengiste which centers on the story of a father and his two sons fighting for their freedom.

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    Alan Sheng
    Written on May 13, 2018
    "Set in Ethiopia at the time of its military revolution, this is a heartbreaking tale of families torn apart by those in power. Hailu, and his two sons Yonas and Dawit are caught up in varying ways through this fictional but representative story. I could almost feel the fracturing of Ethiopia through the eyes of these characters. It was incredibly well done."
  12. 0

    #15The Last King of Scotland

    The Last King of Scotland

    The Last King of Scotland is a non-fiction historical book written by Giles Foden. This book is set in Uganda and it is first published in 1998 by Vintage. 

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    Jeffrey Hamilton
    Written on May 13, 2018
    "I was initially interested in The Last King of Scotland because it had characters from Africa. The book revolves around Idi Amin and a young Scottish doctor he takes on as his personal physician. I was hoping for a more humanitarian character for the African since black people are generally depicted negatively."
  13. 0

    #16Abyssinian Chronicles

    Abyssinian Chronicles

    Abyssinian Chronicles is an African fiction book written by Moses Isegawa. This book is set in Uganda and it is first published in 1998 by Vintage. 

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    Eugene Bradley
    Written on May 11, 2018
    "Abyssinian Chronicles is a story about a young man who manages to make it through the reign of Idi Amin and shows all of the trials he had to overcome in his life. I found the story to be inspiring with well developed characters and an incredible setting. This book helps to bring that part of the world to life as it paints a very realistic picture of life in Africa at that time."
  14. 0

    #17Search Sweet Country

    Search Sweet Country

    Search Sweet Country is a realistic and a portrait novel written by renowned author B. Kojo Laing. It was first published in 1988. It is about the different kinds of people in Accra, Ghana in 1975, from the corrupt official to a known witch.

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    Esperanza Varela
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "I've tried and failed to get into a number of novels set in Africa. It's such a foreign place and culture to someone living in Midwestern America. Search Sweet Country seemed like it would be a good choice with its varied characters and storylines tying together. I usually find these complex stories to be impossible to put down. I still struggled with relating to some of the individuals but the style and the interesting stories intertwining helped to make up for much of that."
  15. 0

    #18Child of Dandelions

    Child of Dandelions
    Child of Dandelions is a young adult historical fiction book written by Shenaaz Nanji. It is first published in 2008 by Front Street, Incorporated. 
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    Ronald Miller
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "While Child of Dandelions does contain African characters the main character of the story is of Indian descent. If you're looking for main characters that are African then you may want to look elsewhere. Otherwise it is a good story. "
  16. 0

    #19The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears

    The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears
    The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears is a literary fiction book written by Dinaw Mengestu which centers on Sepha who fled Ethiopia during the Revolution and went to Washington, D.C.
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    Alice Morgan
    Written on May 16, 2018
    "If you are looking for a book with African characters, look no further than The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears. This book is about an Ethiopian man who flees the country during the revolution. He ends up in Washington, D.C. This story is so interesting I couldn't put it down until it was finished."
  17. 0

    #20Whiplash

    Whiplash
    Whiplash is a South African is a feminist novel written by Tracey Farren that follows the significant turning points or miracles in the life of a Cape Town prostitute, Tess, in a form of a letter addressed to her mother.
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    Diana Montgomery
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "This book is ok. I am not really into books with this format. Some of the book is almost so unrealistic it makes you shake your head. Its alright. "
  18. 0

    #21Say You're One of Them

    Say You're One of Them

    Say You're One of Them is a standalone historical fiction novel written by Uwem Akpan which is about an eight-year-old named Jigana, and a Kenyan boy whose 12-year-old sister, Maisha, works as a prostitute to support her family. 

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    Jean Moreno
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "This book pulls at your heartstrings by showing the terrible things that young kids can actually go through. I cried a bit, and couldn't put it down until the end!"
  19. 0

    #22Cry, the Beloved Country

    Cry, the Beloved Country

    Originally published in 1948, Cry, the Beloved Country is a classic book by South African writer Alan Paton. It tells the story of the harrowing racism that was rampant during the apartheid in South Africa.

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    David Hayes
    Written on April 25, 2018
    "This is the most important story about South Africa and was recommended by Oprah. The story of a black man growing up under apartheid. An interesting and inspirational story."
  20. 0

    #23Home Sweet Home

    Home Sweet Home

    Home Sweet Home is an African American contemporary romance fiction novel written by Rochelle Alers. It is first published in 1996 by Arabesque. 

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    Tyler Willis
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "Funny, sexy, and has a plot! Ok, so if you are reading this, you probably like sexy, historical romances...but I found this one kind of exceptional. I really enjoyed how the author fleshed out the characters. You don't just get the hot, brooding bad boy or the spunky heroine. This was a sweet story with a little dash of sexy! "
  21. 0

    #24Iron Butterfly: A Novel of Africa

    Iron Butterfly: A Novel of Africa

    Iron Butterfly: A Novel of Africa is a historical fiction written by Clara Whaley Perkins. Published in 2011, Iron Butterfly focuses on the kidnapping of the female Paramount Chief from Sierra Leone.

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    Phillip Hughes
    Written on May 11, 2018
    "This book is a beautiful look into the lives of two fictional women in war-torn Africa. It is exciting and touching all of the way through. I could hardly put it down."
  22. 0

    #25My Son's Story

    My Son's Story

    My Son's Story is fictional and cultural book written by South African novelist Nadine Gordimer. This book tells a story of Sonny, a teacher, and how his illicit affair with someone else, due to political struggle, ruined his family.

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    Ethan Mendoza
    Written on April 23, 2018
    "Its story of a teacher, its very emotional. "
  23. 0

    #26Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina

    Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina

    Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina is a memoir by Michaela DePrince with Elaine DePrince. Published in 2014, Taking Flight narrates the author's experiences regarding her escape from Sierra Leone to her rise as star ballerina.

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    Adrián Zamudio
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "This is a brilliant book well written and leaves you hanging on the edge of your seat at all times. I only wish I realized there were African american characters in it. I went through three fourths of hte book before realizing that the character's weren't from Wales. It's also why I had to change my rating from 0 to 5 given that I thought it was a very wrongful depiction of wales culture."
  24. 0

    #27White Man's Grave: A Novel

    White Man's Grave: A Novel
    White Man's Grave is a book written by Richard Dooling. Published in 1994, White Man's Grave focuses on the search for Michael Killigan, a Peace Corps Volunteer in West Africa.
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    Dorothy Sanchez
    Written on May 19, 2018
    "White man's grave is really deep. This book to place in West Africa."
  25. 0

    #28The Thing Around Your Neck

    The Thing Around Your Neck

    The Thing Around Your Neck is a collection of short stories by the award-winning author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. The twelve stories included in the book revolves around modern-day Nigerians and their struggles.

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    Juan Lopez
    Written on April 25, 2018
    "If you're looking to scratch your Africa itch, and you want a book with a bunch of African characters and stories then this is definitely maybe for you. This is a neat little collection of stories coming from Nigeria and it will definitely make you feel something when you read this. It's not the best written book in my opinion, but the stories are great so they make up for that."
  26. 0

    #29Purple Hibiscus

    Purple Hibiscus
    Purple Hibiscus is a historical fiction novel by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the author of the award-winning novel Half of a Yellow Sun. It tells the story of Kambili and Jaja, as their country is torn apart by political strife.
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    Richard Lucas
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "Purple Hibiscus is a great book that really hits home for some reason, man it's great "
  27. 0

    #30The Shadow of the Sun

    The Shadow of the Sun
    The Shadow of the Sun is a nonfiction autobiography book written by Ryszard Kapuscinski, published on April 9, 2001 by Vintage. It follows the story of Ryszard Kapuscinski and his struggle against the ethnic genocide.
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    Olivia Davidson
    Written on May 5, 2018
    "The Shadow of the Sun is a nonfiction autobiography that centers on Ryszard Kapuscinski and his struggle against ethnic genocide in Rwanda. It's not the happiest book, but it's a great choice if you're looking to read more about African history and people."
  28. 0

    #31No Longer at Ease (The African Trilogy)

    No Longer at Ease (The African Trilogy)
    No Longer At Ease is a historical fiction novel by renowned author Chinua Achebe. It is the second book in the African trilogy, following Things Fall Apart and succeeded by Arrow of God.
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    Brandon Gardner
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "if you want to know more about life in Africa and story of African descent lives, no longer at ease may be for you. And if you are a fan of the African trilogy, how can you miss the second book in these three book series. "
  29. 0

    #32Separation

    Separation
    Separation is the debut novel of Babette Brown set in South Africa during the era of great apartheid. The story follows Jessica and her relationship with Ben amidst the atrocities brought about by the political turmoil.
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    Raymond Harvey
    Written on April 22, 2018
    "Separation is a classic novel of South Africa in the apartheid era. It follows a couple through the events of that time and is a good read for those that enjoy African fiction."
  30. 0

    #33Operation Barras: The SAS Rescue Mission: Sierra Leone 2000 (Cassell Military Paperbacks)

    Operation Barras: The SAS Rescue Mission: Sierra Leone 2000 (Cassell Military Paperbacks)

    Operation Barras: The SAS Rescue Mission, Sierra Leone 2000 is a book written by Will Fowler. Published in 2005, Operation Barras provides details the rescue operation in Sierra Leoone.

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    Frances Long
    Written on May 9, 2018
    "This book as a bit graphic for my taste. "
  31. 0

    #34Everything Good Will Come

    Everything Good Will Come
    Everything Good Will Come is an autobiographical novel written by Sefi Atta. Set against the backdrop of political furor in the 1970s, it tells the story of a girl who struggles to gain freedom from strict traditions.
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    Joseph Mendoza
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "This is an autobiographical story of a woman born and living in Africa during the 70s, a time of extreme political and social upheaval in the area. You go along watching this woman live out her life and deal with a multitude of social issues that have a wide ranging effect on her entire life."
  32. 0

    #35Come Juneteenth

    Come Juneteenth
    Come Juneteenth is a book by Ann Rinaldi that tells the story of Sis Goose. She is a slave that was loved dearly by the family she serves, but she will discover a secret that will ruin her relationship with the family.  
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    Sharon Alvarez
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "I had to read this for class and let me tell you... it's so boring and slow i barely remember what i even read. if it wasn't for my class i would have never read this and would not recommend you waste your time either."
  33. 0

    #36Intruder in the Dust

    Intruder in the Dust
    Intruder in the Dust is a coming-of-age novel by William Faulkner, first published in 1948. Set deep in the American south, it tells the story of a black farmer who gets mistakenly accused of murdering a white man.
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    Elizabeth Herrera
    Written on April 18, 2018
    "This book has African Americans, I wouldn't say it is a book about Africans. I would choose another."
  34. 0

    #37The Pull of Freedom

    The Pull of Freedom

    The Pull of Freedom is a standalone historical fiction novel written by Brenda Barrett which is about siblings Nanny and Cudjoe who have been separated from each other to look for their future in Jamaica. 

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    Diana Jordan
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "This summary is very brief but at least I have some context. I know the main characters, the premise, and the setting. "
  35. 0

    #38Irresistible You (Mamma Lou MatchMaker)

    Irresistible You (Mamma Lou MatchMaker)

    Irresistible You is an African American romance fiction and the fourth book in Mamma Lou MatchMaker series written by Celeste O. Norfleet. It is first published in 2004 by Arabesque. 

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    Yi Tan
    Written on May 6, 2018
    "Mamma Lou!! I LOVE you! Shows how when you try to outsmart a fox, you will get outsmarted. This is a great book and a great series. Lesson learned in every book. This lesson-you can't fool the MatchMaker! "

Summary

Best What are the best books with African characters
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
1An Anthology of Somali PoetryBooks 14 Paid
2black girl loveBooks 12 Paid
3As Fast As Words Could FlyBooks 10 Paid
4Barren Lands: An Epic Search for Diamonds in the North American ArcticBooks 8 Paid
5Bill Bryson's African DiaryBooks 7 Paid
6Black Mamba BoyBooks 5 Paid
7Blue Rage, Black RedemptionBooks 5 Paid
8Brown Girl DreamingBooks 3 Paid
9Black Girl / White GirlBooks 1 Paid
10Nightmare Along the River NileBooks 0 Paid
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