Zoboi, Ibi (Ed.), Justina Ireland, Varian Johnson, et al. Black Enough: Stories of Being Young and Black in America. Fiction. Balzer & Bray, 2019. 393 [+6]pp. $17.99. 978-0-06-269872-8. OUTSTANDING. GRADES 8-12.
Editor Ibi Zoboi invited 16 other black authors to “write about teens examining, rebelling against, embracing or simply existing within their own idea of Blackness” and the resulting anthology is filled with diverse and compelling stories presented in extraordinary writing. Stories about the fear of social judgment (Kekla Magoon’s “Out of the Silence”), personal inspiration fighting family tradition (Tochi Onyebuchi’s “Samson and the Delilahs”), and individuals creating their own definitions of race and culture (Lamar Giles’s “Black. Nerd. Problems.”) are part of a remarkable collection that gracefully and honestly addresses adolescence and the unique challenges of American culture in addition to its sensitive and diverse explorations of race, culture, and identity. Introduced by Zoboi, the book also includes a succinct biography of each contributing author. The stories in Black Enough are at once admirably accessible and memorably profound.
Lesley Mandros Bell, Oakland Library Advisory Commission