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1919

1919

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NPR Best Books of 2019
Chicago Tribune Best Books of 2019

Chicago Review of Books Best Poetry Book of 2019
O Magazine Best Books by Women of Summer 2019
The Millions Must-Read Poetry of June 2019
LitHub Most Anticipated Reads of Summer 2019


The Chicago Race Riot of 1919, the most intense of the riots comprising the nation's Red Summer, has shaped the last century but is not widely discussed. In 1919, award-winning poet Eve L. Ewing explores the story of this event--which lasted eight days and resulted in thirty-eight deaths and almost 500 injuries--through poems recounting the stories of everyday people trying to survive and thrive in the city. Ewing uses speculative and Afrofuturist lenses to recast history, and illuminates the thin line between the past and the present.

Black Panther: Reign at dusk

Black Panther: Reign at dusk

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A king without a crown! Banished from the throne, a fugitive in his own homeland, T'Challa still can't leave Wakanda without its sworn protector. With a new costume and fresh purpose to match, the Black Panther stalks the streets and shadows of the city that bears his father's name, Birnin T'Chaka. Some people, though, aren't happy with the rumors that he's in town - including the alluring thief called Beisa! Fortunately, some new allies and familiar faces will remind T'Challa that outcast or no, the Black Panther is never completely alone! But can even a warrior as brilliant and brave as T'Challa survive an encounter with Deathlok? Who is the Gray Wolf who curses Wakanda? And what can one man do when strife between the ruling crime families threatens to escalate into a full-fledged gang war? Collecting BLACK PANTHER (2023) #1-5.
Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game (Graphic Novel Memoir)

Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game (Graphic Novel Memoir)

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Colin Kaepernick: Change the Game is an inspiring high school graphic novel memoir for readers 12 and up from celebrated athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick.

High school star athlete Colin Kaepernick is at a crossroads in life. Heavily scouted by colleges and MLB as a baseball pitcher, he has a bright future ahead of him as a highly touted prospect. Everyone from his parents to his teachers and coaches are in agreement on his future. Colin feels differently.

Colin isn't excited about baseball. In the words of five-time all-star MLB player Adam Jones, "Baseball is a white man's game." Colin looks up to athletes like Allen Iverson: talented, hyper-competitive, unapologetically Black, and dominating their sports while staying true to themselves. College football looks a lot more fun than sleeping on hotel room floors in the minor leagues of baseball. But Colin doesn't have a single offer to play football. Yet.

This touching graphic novel explores the story of how a young change-maker learned to find himself and never compromise. How the right decision is very rarely the easy one, but taking the road less traveled can make all the difference in the world.

Electric Arches

Electric Arches

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Electric Arches is an imaginative exploration of Black girlhood and womanhood through poetry, visual art, and narrative prose.

Blending stark realism with the surreal and fantastic, Eve L. Ewing's narrative takes us from the streets of 1990s Chicago to an unspecified future, deftly navigating the boundaries of space, time, and reality. Ewing imagines familiar figures in magical circumstances--blues legend Koko Taylor is a tall-tale hero; LeBron James travels through time and encounters his teenage self. She identifies everyday objects--hair moisturizer, a spiral notebook--as precious icons.

Her visual art is spare, playful, and poignant--a cereal box decoder ring that allows the wearer to understand what Black girls are saying; a teacher's angry, subversive message scrawled on the chalkboard. Electric Arches invites fresh conversations about race, gender, the city, identity, and the joy and pain of growing up.

Eve L. Ewing is a writer, scholar, artist, and educator from Chicago. Her work has appeared in Poetry, The New Yorker, New Republic, The Nation, The Atlantic, and many other publications. She is a sociologist at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration.

Fortune for Your Disaster

Fortune for Your Disaster

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In his much-anticipated follow-up to The Crown Ain't Worth Much, poet, essayist, biographer, and music critic Hanif Abdurraqib has written a book of poems about how one rebuilds oneself after a heartbreak, the kind that renders them a different version of themselves than the one they knew. It's a book about a mother's death, and admitting that Michael Jordan pushed off, about forgiveness, and how none of the author's black friends wanted to listen to "Don't Stop Believin'." It's about wrestling with histories, personal and shared. Abdurraqib uses touchstones from the world outside--from Marvin Gaye to Nikola Tesla to his neighbor's dogs--to create a mirror, inside of which every angle presents a new possibility.
Ghosts in the Schoolyard: Racism and School Closings

Ghosts in the Schoolyard: Racism and School Closings

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"Failing schools. Underprivileged schools. Just plain bad schools."

That's how Eve L. Ewing opens Ghosts in the Schoolyard: describing Chicago Public Schools from the outside. The way politicians and pundits and parents of kids who attend other schools talk about them, with a mix of pity and contempt.

But Ewing knows Chicago Public Schools from the inside: as a student, then a teacher, and now a scholar who studies them. And that perspective has shown her that public schools are not buildings full of failures--they're an integral part of their neighborhoods, at the heart of their communities, storehouses of history and memory that bring people together.

Never was that role more apparent than in 2013 when Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced an unprecedented wave of school closings. Pitched simultaneously as a solution to a budget problem, a response to declining enrollments, and a chance to purge bad schools that were dragging down the whole system, the plan was met with a roar of protest from parents, students, and teachers. But if these schools were so bad, why did people care so much about keeping them open, to the point that some would even go on a hunger strike?

Ewing's answer begins with a story of systemic racism, inequality, bad faith, and distrust that stretches deep into Chicago history. Rooting her exploration in the historic African American neighborhood of Bronzeville, Ewing reveals that this issue is about much more than just schools. Black communities see the closing of their schools--schools that are certainly less than perfect but that are theirs--as one more in a long line of racist policies. The fight to keep them open is yet another front in the ongoing struggle of black people in America to build successful lives and achieve true self-determination.

Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes to a Tribe Called Quest

Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes to a Tribe Called Quest

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A New York Times Best Seller
2019 National Book Award Longlist, Nonfiction
2019 Kirkus Book Prize Finalist, Nonfiction
A February IndieNext Pick

Named A Most Anticipated Book of 2019 by Buzzfeed, Nylon, The A. V. Club, CBC Books, and The Rumpus, and a Winter's Most Anticipated Book by Vanity Fair and The Week
Starred Reviews: Kirkus and Booklist
"Warm, immediate and intensely personal."--New York Times

How does one pay homage to A Tribe Called Quest? The seminal rap group brought jazz into the genre, resurrecting timeless rhythms to create masterpieces such as The Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders. Seventeen years after their last album, they resurrected themselves with an intense, socially conscious record, We Got It from Here . . . Thank You 4 Your Service, which arrived when fans needed it most, in the aftermath of the 2016 election. Poet and essayist Hanif Abdurraqib digs into the group's history and draws from his own experience to reflect on how its distinctive sound resonated among fans like himself. The result is as ambitious and genre-bending as the rap group itself.

Abdurraqib traces the Tribe's creative career, from their early days as part of the Afrocentric rap collective known as the Native Tongues, through their first three classic albums, to their eventual breakup and long hiatus. Their work is placed in the context of the broader rap landscape of the 1990s, one upended by sampling laws that forced a reinvention in production methods, the East Coast-West Coast rivalry that threatened to destroy the genre, and some record labels' shift from focusing on groups to individual MCs. Throughout the narrative Abdurraqib connects the music and cultural history to their street-level impact. Whether he's remembering The Source magazine cover announcing the Tribe's 1998 breakup or writing personal letters to the group after bandmate Phife Dawg's death, Abdurraqib seeks the deeper truths of A Tribe Called Quest; truths that--like the low end, the bass--are not simply heard in the head, but felt in the chest.

How We Do It: Black Writers on Craft, Practice, and Skill

How We Do It: Black Writers on Craft, Practice, and Skill

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More than 30 acclaimed writers--including diverse voices such as Nikki Giovanni, David Omotosho Black, Natasha Trethewey, Barry Jenkins, Jacqueline Woodson, Tayari Jones, and Angela Flournoy--reflect on their experience and expertise in this unique book on the craft of writing that focuses on the Black creative spirit.

How We Do It is an anthology curated by Black writers for the creation and proliferation of Black thought. While a creator's ethnicity does not solely define them, it is inherently part of who they are and how they interpret the world.

For centuries, Black creators have utilized oral and written storytelling traditions in crafting their art. But how does one begin the process of constructing a poem or story or character? How do Black writers, when faced with questions of "authenticity," dive deep into the essence of their lives and work to find the inherent truth? How We Do It addresses these profound questions. Not a traditional "how to" writing handbook, it seeks to guide rather than dictate and to validate the complexity and range of styles--and even how one thinks about craft itself.

An outstanding list of contributors offer their insights on a range of important topics. Pulitzer Prize winner Jericho Brown explores the lives personified in poetry, while Pulitzer Prize winner Natasha Trethewey explores decolonizing enduring metaphors. National Book Award finalist Angela Flournoy illuminates the pain of grief in all forms and how it can be revealed in the act of creation, and iconoclast Nikki Giovanni offers an elegiac declaration on language.

New and previously published essays and interviews provide encouragement, examples, and templates, and offer lessons on everything from poetic form and plotting a story to the lessons inherent in the act of writing, trial & error, and finding inspiration in the works of others, including those of Toni Morrison, Shakespeare, and Edward P. Jones. A handbook and a reference tool, How We Do It is a thoughtful and welcome tool that offers direction to help Black artists establish their own creative practice while celebrating and widening the scope of the Black writer's role in art, history, and culture.

Contributors include Daniel Omotosho Black, Jericho Brown, Breena Clark, Rita Dove, Camille T. Dungy, W. Ralph Eubanks, Curdella Forbes, Angela Flournoy, Ernest Gaines, Nikki Giovanni, Marita Golden, Ravi Howard, Terrance Hayes, Mitchell S. Jackson, Barry Jenkins, Charles Johnson, Tayari Jones, Jamaica Kincaid, Tony Medina, E. Ethelbert Miller, Elizabeth Nunez, Carl Phillips, Jewell Parker Rhodes, Rion Amilcar Scott, Evie Shockley, Natasha Trethewey, Frank X Walker, Afaa M. Weaver, Crystal Wilkinson, Jacqueline Woodson, Tiphanie Yanique.

Information Desk: An Epic

Information Desk: An Epic

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New York Times Book Review Edtitors' Choice

"Among the year's highlights . . . groundbreaking, epic . . . Like visitors exiting the Met's galleries, readers will emerge from Information Desk bedazzled by the transformative horizons of art." --Washington Post

"

An effluvial rush of memory, desire, data, and metaphor . . . It's bracing to encounter a mind so voracious, so unapologetic in its intelligence." --New York Review of Books

A book-length poem set in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, from a writer whose work offers "something few poets ever discover: a vision of the whole world" (Dan Chiasson, The New Yorker)

Robyn Schiff's fourth collection is an ambitious book-length poem in three parts set at The Metropolitan Museum of Art's information desk, where Schiff long ago held a staff position. Elaborately mapping an interconnected route in and out of the museum through history, material, and memory, Information Desk: An Epic takes us on an anguished soul-quest and ecstatic intellectual query to confront the violent forces that inform the museum's encyclopedic collection and the spiritual powers of art.

Novelistic in its sweep, frantically informative, and deeply intimate in its private recollections, Information Desk: An Epic wayfares with riveting lyric intensity through an epic array of topics and concerns, including illusion, deception, self-deception, complicity, lecherous coworkers, the composition of pigment, the scattering of seeds, ideas, and capital, and insect infestations spreading within artwork. Along the way, Schiff pauses to invoke three terrifying muses--parasitic wasps--in desperate awe of their powers of precision and generative energy. Information Desk: An Epic undertakes a hemorrhaging ekphrastic journey through artifice and the natural world.

Ironheart: Meant to Fly

Ironheart: Meant to Fly

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Collects Ironheart (2018) #1-12. Riri Williams steps boldly out of Tony Stark's shadow to forge her own future! When one of Spider-Man's old foes holds a group of world leaders hostage, Ironheart must up her game. Luckily, Riri has a will of steel, a heart of iron and a new A.I. on her side! Unluckily, the search for a kidnapped friend will send her stumbling into an ancient power - and it's deadly! Plus: When Miles Morales goes missing, who better to search for him than his fellow Champion Riri? And more amazing friends join the fun - including Nadia Van Dyne, the unstoppable Wasp! The Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Strange! And Princess Shuri of Wakanda! But can Riri and her allies stop the sinister Ten Rings and their plans for destruction?