Anti-Racism Non-Fiction Book List
What can we do? We’ve always turned to books for answers, so we've created reading lists of books that educate about racism, antiracism, white fragility, and more. On this page are adult non-fiction. We also have lists for adult fiction and kids and teens.
These lists are by no means complete, and we'll add more. We'd love to hear your recommendations!
Demand for print books is very high at this writing and it may be a couple of weeks or more before we can get certain titles. If you need a book quickly, please consider the audiobook and ebook as an alternative (see available links with each book).
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the National Book Award–winning author of Stamped from the Beginning comes a “groundbreaking” (Time) approach to understanding and uprooting racism and inequality in our society—and in ourselves.
The New York Times best-selling book exploring the counterproductive reactions white people have when their assumptions about race are challenged, and how these reactions maintain racial inequality.
In this New York Times bestseller, Ijeoma Oluo offers a hard-hitting but user-friendly examination of race in America
"Poignant....important and illuminating."—The New York Times Book Review
"Groundbreaking."—Bryan Stevenson, New York Times bestselling author of Just Mercy
From one of the world’s leading experts on unconscious racial bias come stories, science, and strategies to address one of the central controversies of our time
The National Book Award winning history of how racist ideas were created, spread, and deeply rooted in American society.
The New York Times and USA Today bestseller This eye-opening book challenges you to do the essential work of unpacking your biases, and helps white people take action and dismantle the privilege within themselves so that you can stop (often unconsciously) inflicting damage on people of color, and in turn, help other white people do better, too.
In this epic, beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities, in search of a better life.
NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD WINNER
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NATIONAL BOOK AWARD WINNER • NAMED ONE OF TIME’S TEN BEST NONFICTION BOOKS OF THE DECADE • PULITZER PRIZE FINALIST • NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FINALIST
The classic, bestselling book on the psychology of racism -- now fully revised and updated
"Hope and insight and empathy spring from every page. . . . [McKesson] stares down the faces of bigotry and unfreedom and cynicism and doesn't flinch in writing out our marching orders toward freedom." --Ibram X. Kendi, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How to Be an Antiracist
New York Times Bestseller • Notable Book of the Year • Editors' Choice Selection
One of Bill Gates’ “Amazing Books” of the Year
One of Publishers Weekly’s 10 Best Books of the Year
Longlisted for the National Book Award for Nonfiction
An NPR Best Book of the Year
Winner of the Hillman Prize for Nonfiction
Gold Winner • California Book Award (Nonfi
Named a 2018 Notable Work of Nonfiction by The Washington Post
NOW A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Winner, The 2018 Southern Book Prize
NAMED A BEST/MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK OF 2018 BY: Chicago Tribune • Time • Publisher's Weekly
"Don't Label Me should be labeled as genius. It's an amazing book." - Chris Rock
A unique conversation about diversity, bigotry, and our common humanity, by the New York Times bestselling author, Oprah “Chutzpah” award-winner, and founder of the Moral Courage Project
From award-winning poet Saeed Jones, How We Fight for Our Lives—winner of the Kirkus Prize and the Stonewall Book Award—is a “moving, bracingly honest memoir” (The New York Times Book Review) written at the crossroads of sex, race, and power.
One of the best books of the year as selected by The New York Times; The Washington Post
A unique and irreverent take on everything that's wrong with our “national conversation about race”—and what to do about it
In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., isolated himself from the demands of the civil rights movement, rented a house in Jamaica with no telephone, and labored over his final manuscript.
A vibrant and empowering history that emphasizes the perspectives and stories of African American women to show how they are—and have always been—instrumental in shaping our country
Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award
Winner of the Heartland Prize
A New York Times Notable Book
A Finalist for the NAACP Image Award
A Finalist for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for Nonfiction
Longlisted for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay
An NPR Best Book of the Year
An indispensable work of journalism that “is electric, because it is so well reported” (Dwight Garner, New York Times) by Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Wesley Lowery that describes the earliest days of #blacklivesmatter and brings to life the quest for justice in the murders by police of Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, and Freddie Gray as well as an intimate, moving portrait of
THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER.
New York Times Editor’s Pick.
Library Journal Best Books of 2019.
TIME Magazine's "Best Memoirs of 2018 So Far."
O, Oprah’s Magazine’s “10 Titles to Pick Up Now.”
Politics & Current Events 2018 O.W.L. Book Awards Winner
The Root Best of 2018
During his 28-year career, Matthew Horace rose through the ranks from a police officer working the beat to a federal agent working criminal cases in some of the toughest communities in America to a highly decorated federal law enforcement executive managing high-profile investigations nationwide.
“Gripping and meticulously documented.”—Don Schanche Jr., Washington Post
With And The Walls Came Tumbling, his debut collection, writer and educator Darius V. Daughtry, provides an introspective poetic memoir and sweeping cultural critique. Equal parts praise dance and eulogy, And The Walls Came Tumbling is full of vulnerable, introspective poems that explore societal constructs - race, class, gender – and questions their existence in our lives.
2020 Chautauqua Prize Finalist
2020 NAACP Image Award Nominee - Outstanding Literary Work (Nonfiction)
Best-of Lists: Best Nonfiction Books of 2019 (Kirkus Reviews) · 25 Can't-Miss Books of 2019 (The Undefeated)
Named one of the most important nonfiction books of the 21st century by Entertainment Weekly' Slate' Chronicle of Higher Education' Literary Hub, Book Riot' and Zora
Named one of the Best Books of the Century by New York Magazine
Two-time National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward (Salvage the Bones, Sing, Unburied, Sing) contends with the deaths of five young men dear to her, and the risk of being a black man in the rural South.
This New York Times best-selling book is a guide for families, educators, and communities to raise their children to be able and active anti-racist allies.
"Basically the finest essay I’ve ever read. . . . Baldwin refused to hold anyone’s hand. He was both direct and beautiful all at once. He did not seem to write to convince you. He wrote beyond you.” --Ta-Nehisi Coates
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize
“A must-read, cannot-put-down history.” — Thomas Friedman, New York Times
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
"This is a book that was begging to be written. This is the kind of book that demands a future where we’ll no longer need such a book. Essential." --Marlon James
“The most important book for me this year.” --Emma Watson
Selected by Emma Watson as the Our Shared Shelf Book Club Pick for January/February 2018
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • REESE’S BOOK CLUB X HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK PICK • From a leading voice on racial justice, an eye-opening account of growing up Black, Christian, and female that exposes how white America’s love affair with “diversity” so often falls short of its ideals.
From a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter, the powerful story of how a prominent white supremacist changed his heart and mind. This is a book to help us understand the American moment and to help us better understand one another.