The MahoganyBooks Adult Bestsellers list is more than just a look at the Top Five books purchased over the past month from our store and website. It’s a list that takes into account the interests and concerns of African American readers/shoppers regardless of publisher, recency of publication, or book promotions geared at manufacturing sales.
Quite simply, our bestsellers list is a representation of the kinds of literary content that matters to them. #BlackBooksMatter
So without further ado, we present our…
September 2021 | MahoganyBooks Adult Bestsellers
#1 – While Justice Sleeps by Stacey Abrams
From celebrated national leader and bestselling author Stacey Abrams, While Justice Sleeps is a gripping, complexly plotted thriller set within the halls of the U.S. Supreme Court.
Avery Keene, a brilliant young law clerk for the legendary Justice Howard Wynn, is doing her best to hold her life together–excelling in an arduous job with the court while also dealing with a troubled family. When the shocking news breaks that Justice Wynn–the cantankerous swing vote on many current high-profile cases–has slipped into a coma, Avery’s life turns upside down. She is immediately notified that Justice Wynn has left instructions for her to serve as his legal guardian and power of attorney. Plunged into an explosive role she never anticipated, Avery finds that Justice Wynn had been secretly researching one of the most controversial cases before the court–a proposed merger between an American biotech company and an Indian genetics firm, which promises to unleash breathtaking results in the medical field. She also discovers that Wynn suspected a dangerously related conspiracy that infiltrates the highest power corridors of Washington.
As political wrangling ensues in Washington to potentially replace the ailing judge whose life and survival Avery controls, she begins to unravel a carefully constructed, chess like sequence of clues left behind by Wynn. She comes to see that Wynn had a much more personal stake in the controversial case and realizes his complex puzzle will lead her directly into harm’s way in order to find the truth. While Justice Sleeps is a cunningly crafted, sophisticated novel, layered with myriad twists and a vibrant cast of characters. Drawing on her astute inside knowledge of the court and political landscape, Stacey Abrams shows herself to be not only a force for good in politics and voter fairness but also a major new talent in suspense fiction.
#2 – Today I Affirm: A Journal That Nurtures Self-Care by Alexandra Elle
“Elle, who’s known in social media self care circle as a top voice in wellness–particularly among women of color–has been transforming lives with her positive words for years. Now, she’s making it easier than ever for you to do the same–for yourself.” –Vibe.com
From Alex Elle, celebrated poet and author of Neon Soul and Words from a Wanderer, comes Today I Affirm–a journal and guide to reading and writing daily affirmations.
Writing serves as a form of meditation. When we slow down and settle into ourselves, affirmations can assist us in self-awareness, introspection, and understanding. Today I Affirm helps walk readers through the ins and outs of cultivating positive self-talk in a way that is stress-free and easy to understand. This innovative book includes affirmations written by the author, short bits of inspiration, charts to fill in, as well as journal pages all with the focus on self-care.
Alexandra Elle is a writer and creative living in the Washington, DC metro area with her husband and two daughters. In her pre-teen years, writing came into her life by way of therapy and the exploration of healing. Many years later, Alex’s voice and words are being shared poetically in the form of self-love and self-care. Her passion for storytelling, poetry, and narrative writing are infused with life lessons, self-celebration, and building community through reading, writing, and language.
#3 – The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois by Honoree Fanonne Jeffers
The 2020 National Book Award-nominated poet makes her fiction debut with this magisterial epic–an intimate yet sweeping novel with all the luminescence and force of Homegoing; Sing, Unburied, Sing; and The Water Dancer–that chronicles the journey of one American family, from the centuries of the colonial slave trade through the Civil War to our own tumultuous era.
The great scholar, W. E. B. Du Bois, once wrote about the Problem of race in America, and what he called “Double Consciousness,” a sensitivity that every African American possesses in order to survive. Since childhood, Ailey Pearl Garfield has understood Du Bois’s words all too well. Bearing the names of two formidable Black Americans–the revered choreographer Alvin Ailey and her great grandmother Pearl, the descendant of enslaved Georgians and tenant farmers–Ailey carries Du Bois’s Problem on her shoulders.
Ailey is reared in the north in the City but spends summers in the small Georgia town of Chicasetta, where her mother’s family has lived since their ancestors arrived from Africa in bondage. From an early age, Ailey fights a battle for belonging that’s made all the more difficult by a hovering trauma, as well as the whispers of women–her mother, Belle, her sister, Lydia, and a maternal line reaching back two centuries–that urge Ailey to succeed in their stead.
To come to terms with her own identity, Ailey embarks on a journey through her family’s past, uncovering the shocking tales of generations of ancestors–Indigenous, Black, and white–in the deep South. In doing so Ailey must learn to embrace her full heritage, a legacy of oppression and resistance, bondage and independence, cruelty and resilience that is the story–and the song–of America itself.
#4 – Get Good With Money by Tiffany Aliche
Tiffany Aliche was a successful pre-school teacher with a healthy nest egg when a recession and advice from a shady advisor put her out of a job and into a huge financial hole. As she began to chart the path to her own financial rescue, the outline of her ten-step formula for attaining both financial security and peace of mind began to take shape. These principles have now helped more than one million women worldwide save and pay off millions in debt, and begin planning for a richer life.
Revealing this practical ten-step process for the first time in its entirety, Get Good with Money introduces the powerful concept of building wealth through financial wholeness a realistic, achievable, and energizing alternative to get-rich-quick and over-complicated money management systems. With helpful checklists, worksheets, a tool kit of resources, and advanced advice from experts who Tiffany herself relies on (her Budgetnista Boosters), Get Good with Money gets crystal clear on the short-term actions that lead to long-term goals, including:
- A simple technique to determine your baseline or noodle budget, examine and systemize your expenses, and lay out a plan that allows you to say yes to your dreams.
- An assessment tool that helps you understand whether you have a don’t make enough problem or a spend too much issue–as well as ways to fix both.
- Best practices for saving for a rainy day (aka job loss), a big-ticket item (a house, a trip, a car), and money that can be invested for your future.
- Detailed advice and action steps for taking charge of your credit score, maximizing bill-paying automation, savings and investing, and calculating your life, disability, and property insurance needs.
- Ways to protect your beneficiaries’ future, and ensure that your financial wishes will stand the test of time.
An invaluable guide to cultivating good financial habits and making your money work for you, Get Good with Money will help you build a solid foundation for your life (and legacy) that’s rich in every way.
#5 – The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw
“These are stories about Black women that haven’t been told with this level of depth, wit, or insight before, so it will not shock me if Oprah gets around to selecting it before the end of the year.” –Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
The Secret Lives of Church Ladies explores the raw and tender places where Black women and girls dare to follow their desires and pursue a momentary reprieve from being good. The nine stories in this collection feature four generations of characters grappling with who they want to be in the world, caught as they are between the church’s double standards and their own needs and passions.
There is fourteen-year-old Jael, who has a crush on the preacher’s wife. At forty-two, Lyra realizes that her discomfort with her own body stands between her and a new love. As Y2K looms, Caroletta’s “same time next year” arrangement with her childhood best friend is tenuous. A serial mistress lays down the ground rules for her married lovers. In the dark shadows of a hospice parking lot, grieving strangers find comfort in each other.
With their secret longings, new love, and forbidden affairs, these church ladies are as seductive as they want to be, as vulnerable as they need to be, as unfaithful and unrepentant as they care to be, and as free as they deserve to be.