Can you believe that we are already two-thirds of the way through 2020?! This year has given us some incredible books, for which I am thankful. Still, several books are coming out in the next few months that I can’t wait to get my hands on. Below, I share 14 of my most-anticipated upcoming book releases. This list includes fiction, non-fiction, adult and children’s titles coming out between now and January 2021, and many are debuts.
In Black and White: A Young Barrister’s Story of Race and Class in a Broken Justice System by Alexandra Wilson
The Sunday Times recently published a great interview with Wilson. In the piece, she discusses her journey into the legal profession and some of the common occurrences that have become part of her everyday working life due to the colour of her skin. I don’t personally know any black barristers so I’m interested to hear her experiences of building a career in, and navigating, a system that is rife with racism and inequality. I’ve pre-ordered the audiobook and can’t wait to get into it.
Out 13th August via Octopus Books/Hachette UK.
I’ve been looking forward to this book since it was first announced last year. Love In Colour is a short story collection that reimagines love stories from mythology and history. It incorporates West African folklore, Greek myths, ancient Middle Eastern legends and more. Babalola is one of my favourite people on Twitter. I could do with more romance in my reading life and Love In Colour is exactly what my bookshelves need. How can you not like the sound of this, or at the very least, be intrigued by it? If you still need convincing to pick up this book, read this exclusive excerpt from Love in Colour, courtesy of Bustle UK.
Out 20th August via Headline/Hachette UK.
I’ve been following Stephanie Yeboah on social media for a little while now and was pleasantly surprised when she announced that she had written a book. Her fashion and beauty looks are amazing but I also enjoy reading her thoughts on the body positivity movement, fatphobia and her honest reflections on navigating society as a plus-sized, dark-skinned black woman. I’m sure her book will be brilliant!
Out 3rd September via Hardie Grant Books.
Last month I raved about how useful I found the F*ck Being Humble online workshops during lockdown. Stefanie is such an engaging speaker and I love that she’s put all her advice and knowledge into a book. F*ck Being Humble is an honest and much-needed guide to self-promotion today. The book will be an invaluable resource for those of us who sometimes struggle with shouting about our achievements and blowing our trumpets.
Out 3rd September via Quadrille/Hardie Grant Books.
I LOVED Abdullah’s previous novel Take It Back (and reviewed it earlier this year). Her writing is superb and I can’t wait to return to the world of assault councillor Zara Kaleel. Truth Be Told follows Kamran Hadid, a boarding school student who has everything going for him until one particularly messy night leads to him becoming Zara’s latest case. Truth Be Told is a contemporary courtroom drama that is described as “powerful, explosive and important.” As a follow-up to Take It Back, I have high hopes for this and I’m sure I won’t be disappointed.
Out 3rd September via HQ/HarperCollins.
Lee Lawrence is the son of Cherry Groce, a black woman who was wrongfully shot by police during a raid on her Brixton home in 1985. I wasn’t aware of Groce’s story until a few months ago while reading a book called Inside Babylon: The Caribbean Diaspora in Britain. Inside Babylon has a chapter on black women and the police, which is how learned about Cherry Groce. Her story angered and sickened me so I’m intrigued to read Lawrence’s memoir. I’m particularly eager to hear about his fight for justice and find out his perspectives on policing in the UK.
Out 17th September via Sphere/Hachette UK.
In 2018, I wrote a glowing review about Adegoke and Uviebinené’s first book, Slay In Your Lane, so it’s clear that I’m a SIYL stan. Loud Black Girls is an anthology featuring twenty black British contributors discussing a broad range of topics and I can’t wait to read it! The stellar line-up of writers includes Siana Bangura, Candice Brathwaite, Paula Akpan, Kuchenga, Jendella Benson and many more. Check out this Twitter thread for a full list of contributors and essay titles.
Out 1st October via 4th Estate/HarperCollins.
I’m a sucker for a good self-help book. How can I possibly resist one written by a G like Ovie? In case you’re wondering, yes–I’m talking about the indescribably handsome, charming, funny basketball player and Love Island contestant we all fell in love with last year. I’m a big self-love advocate and very much into leading a peaceful and purposeful life. I’m keen to hear Ovie’s pearls of wisdom and learn more about his journey. His book sounds uplifting and inspiring, which is what we need after the shitshow 2020 has turned out to be.
Out 1st October via Quadrille/Hardie Grant Books.
As soon as I saw the cover of this book, I knew I’d be reading it the second it was released. This contemporary YA mystery novel is centred on a young aspiring musician named Enchanted. Enchanted’s dreams of stardom seem within reach when she meets a famous R&B artist, until one day he ends up dead and it looks like she could be responsible. New York Times bestselling author Dhonielle Clayton calls Grown a “searing examination of misogynoir, rape culture, and the vulnerability of young black girls.” I don’t need any more convincing…
Out 15th October via HarperCollins Children’s.
Olivette Otele is the UK’s first black history professor, and currently Professor of the History of Slavery at the University of Bristol. Honestly, I will be ready to buy any book she writes. I don’t know much about the history of African people on the European continent–I’m still learning about the history of African people in Britain alone. I don’t tend to read many history non-fiction books but I’ll be picking up a copy of African Europeans. I highly recommend watching Professor Otele’s 2019 lecture on slavery, memory and reparations.
Out 29th October via Hurst Publishers.
I love the title and premise of this story. It’s a coming-of-age story featuring a queer Palestinian-American protagonist and explores love, desire and sexuality. I’ve heard great things about this book and don’t one quite like this on my shelves which is why I’m looking forward to reading it!
Out 19th November via Dialogue Books/Little, Brown Book Group.
I received a sample of this book a few months ago and the first three chapters slap. It’s a dual-narrative contemporary fiction novel set in present-day London and 1960s Uganda. I like what I’ve read so far and am confident that I’ll be a big fan of Hayyan’s work. #Merky Books have been coming through and publishing brilliant literature so I’m certain this novel will make waves next year. Hafsa Zayyan is a co-winner of the inaugural 2019 #Merky Books new writers’ prize.
Out 21st January via #Merky Books/Penguin Random House.
This middle-grade fantasy adventure novel follows a girl named Amari who is searching for her missing brother. It’s described as “Harry Potter meets Men In Black” and is the first book in a trilogy. Universal Pictures has optioned the film rights to Amari and the Night Brothers and the amazing Marsai Martin is said to be producing and starring in it. I’m so happy to hear this because I loved Marsai Martin’s movie Little. Even though I started reading fantasy quite recently, I think my 11-year-old younger brother and I will enjoy Amari and the Night Brothers.
Out 21st January via Egmont/HarperCollins UK.
Luster follows a young black woman, Edie, who becomes involved with a middle-aged white man who is apparently in an open marriage. I love coming-of-age stories with flawed and complex characters. Edie sounds like she’s a bit all over the place and has no clue what she’s doing, which will strike a chord with many readers. I’m eager to read Luster because it seems like a very bold and funny novel.
Out 28th January via Picador Books/Pan Macmillan.
Which upcoming books are you looking forward to in 2020 and 2021? Are you excited to read any of the books I mentioned above? Let me know in the comments!