If you all are anything like Team McKinney, you are always adding new books to your shelves that are already bursting at the seam. This year we’ve spent countless hours with our favorites books – during commutes, lazy weekends and crisp fall nights on the couch. While it is impossible to name every book that touched us, these four are excellent choices to add to your collection.

 

Becoming

Michelle Obama

The former First Lady’s long-awaited memoir gives the reader an intimate look into her private yet thrilling and ambitious life. More than the spouse of the nation’s first Black president, Michelle Obama gives us insights into the realities and experiences that have molded her into who she is – from her family’s escape from the Jim Crow South, to the adolescent street’s of Chicago’s Southside, to the halls of Harvard University. Isabel Wilkerson writes, “The book is a Chicago coming-of-age story; a love story of a pair of opposites; and a political saga by a woman who was skeptical, if not outright disdainful, of politics, who tried to apply the brakes where she could, and who ultimately transcended her worries to become one of the most popular first ladies in history.”

 

This Will Be My Undoing

Morgan Jenkins

Named one of the most anticipated books of 2018 by major pubs like Vogue and Book RiotMorgan Jenkins’ collection of themed essays questions pop culture, feminism, black history, misogyny, and racism and her personal experiences. If you’re a fan of Roxane Gay and Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie, then this book is a page turning read. Whether your views are shared or not, you will find the interventions affirming.

 

What the Eyes Don’t See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City

Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha

The physician, who exposed the Flint water crisis, after finding her young patients had alarming levels of lead in their blood, wrote a book about the tragedy.  Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha said, “This is not just the story of a Michigan city and its toxic water. This is a personal story of how I, as an Iraqi-American immigrant, came to be a pediatrician in Flint, and it is a story of science, medicine, justice and democracy; of how they all intersect and, ultimately, what we humans owe to each other.”

 

Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo”

Zora Neale Hurston

In 1927, Zora Neale Hurston traveled to Plateau, Alabama, to visit eighty-six-year-old Cudjo Lewis, a survivor of the Clotilda, the last slaver known to have made the transatlantic journey. At the time, Cudjo was the only person alive who could recount this integral part of the nation’s history. Writer, cultural anthropologist and visionary, Hurston preserved Cudjo’s story in her classic style showcasing her mastery of the African American dialect.