Top 9 Books Read By African Americans

Top Books In The Power List

Nine of the books nominated for 2015 NAACP Image Awards, for outstanding literary work, were represented among the best-sellers on the Winter 2015 edition of the Power List of best-selling books written or read by African Americans.

These nine titles were all released in 2014, and all ten saw strong sales prior to their nominations being announced in December, and since.

Here are the Image Award-nominated books ranked in order shown on the Winter 2015 Power List:

Power List Ranking

top 9 books read by African Americans by NewsBlaze
  1. Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay

    Roxane Gay is one of the most-watched young cultural observers of her generation. Her book, Bad Feminist, is a collection of funny and insightful essays, covering politics, criticism, and feminism. She takes the reader through a woman’s journey. It is a journey of color and culture, and she comments on the current state of feminism.

  2. 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse by J. J. Smith

    Supernutrients from leafy greens and fruits are the key to this healthy book that will jump-start your weight loss, increase your energy level, clear your mind, and improve your overall health. The experience could change your life.

  3. An Untamed State by Roxane Gay

    An Untamed State puts the spot on victims of trauma and the path to their recovery. The American-born daughter of immigrant Haitian parents is the main character. Her parents, born from humble beginnings eventually move back to Haiti to continue their prosperous business ventures. While visiting her parents with her husband and infant son, Mireille is kidnapped, repeatedly gang-raped, physically and psychologically tortured for nearly two weeks because her father refuses to pay the ransom for her release.

  4. Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson

    Stevenson is executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama, and professor of law at New York University Law School. Just Mercy received critical acclaim, including from John Grisham, who said “Not since Atticus Finch has a fearless and committed lawyer made such a difference in the American South. Though larger than life, Atticus exists only in fiction. Bryan Stevenson, however, is very much alive and doing God’s work fighting for the poor, the oppressed, the voiceless, the vulnerable, the outcast, and those with no hope. Just Mercy is his inspiring and powerful story.”

  5. Afro-Vegan by Bryant Terry

    Bryant Terry, renowned chef and food justice activist, blends vibrantly colorful and flavorful African, Caribbean, and southern cuisine. His book, Afro-Vegan, takes favorite African staples, ingredients, and classic dishes, then reworks and remixes them into new, creative culinary combinations that suit vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores alike.

  6. A Wanted Woman by Eric Jerome Dickey

    Eric Jerome Dickey, the New York Times bestselling author, makes the reader’s adrenaline pump, as a female assassin, a woman of a thousand faces, pursues a contract that goes wrong, in Trinidad, Barbados.

  7. The Prodigal Son by Kimberla Lawson Roby

    Kimberla Lawson Roby continues the Reverend Curtis Black series. In The Prodigal Son, the reverend tries to reunite with his son, Matthew, who he hasn’t seen for more than a year, since he and his wife drove the boy away. While the reverend prays his som will forgive him, Mathhew starts to realize that parenthood isn’t exactly what he thought it was.

  8. Forty Acres by Dwayne Alexander Smith

    Dwayne Alexander Smith’s suspense thriller, Forty Acres, is the story of a shocking provocative conspiracy, in which a young black attorney confronts race and power as he uncovers a shocking conspiracy.

  9. Queen Sugar by Natalie Baszile

    A B.A. in English from UC Berkeley, and a Masters in Afro-American Studies from UCLA, set up Natalie Baszile to write Queen Sugar, in which African American Charley Bordelon tries to build a new life for herself and her pre-teen daughter, within the complexities of the contemporary South. After unexpectedly inheriting eight hundred acres of sugarcane land, she and her eleven-year-old daughter move to Louisiana, here she learns that cane farming is a white man’s business.

The NAACP Image Awards ceremony will take place on Friday, Feb. 6 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, Calif. It will be broadcast live on TV One at 8 p.m. EST.

The Power List is compiled by collecting data from online book sellers, random samples on relevant Facebook pages, and a quarterly survey of 1,200 African-American book clubs. The lists (Paperback Fiction, Hardcover Fiction, Paperback Non-Fiction, and Hardcover Non-Fiction) are released on the fourth Monday of the month following each calendar quarter, and is a joint project of and

The Winter 2015 lists may be viewed at the Power List web site:

Kam Williams is a popular and top NewsBlaze reviewer, our chief critic. Kam gives his unvarnished opinion on movies, DVDs and books, plus many in-depth and revealing celebrity interviews.

Sadly, Lloyd Kam Williams passed away in 2019, leaving behind a huge body of work focused on America’s black entertainment community. We were as sad to hear of his passing as we were overjoyed to have him as part of our team.