We’ve been rocking with our own Bookstagram Instagram page for a while, @BNPLit, and love to share the written word for the ‘gram with book lovers. I want to put a spotlight on a handful of smaller bookstagramers that are rocking to the beat of their own drum, making waves with their own aesthetic and their own reading picks. If you’re knee deep in the tags for reading material on Instagram, here are some standout pages you’ll love and want to follow too!
1.) Brown Kids On The Cover
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Count Me In by Varsha Bajaj. ⠀ .⠀ .⠀ .⠀ .⠀ #books #kidsbooks #diversekidsbooks #brownkidsonthecover #diversebooks #bookstagram #bookbloggers #childrensbooks #wndb #weneeddiversebooks #reading #kidlit #readingisfundamental #representationmatters #kidsbookstagram #booksofinstagram
Started up by BNP fave Connie who is a multimedia superstar by way of writing, editing, podcasting, moderating panels, the works — Brown Kids On The Cover is a creative project she thought up at her day job as a children’s magazine writer. From the bio of the page: “I wanted a place to display books we get in the office, esp the ones with PoC kids on the cover.” This is one of my favorite pages as it’s also a breath of fresh air to see the variety of different kid lit books all with diverse art, bright colors and kids of color! Hashtags that this bookstgram operates under include: #brownskidsonthecover, #diversekidsbooks and #kidsbookstagram.
2.) Hermanas Who Read
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I had so much fun at a local booksale today and spent too much money but it was worth it!! -Sobeida . . Here is the list of books that I bought: Go tell it on the mountain by James Baldwin Nobody knows my name by James Baldwin Platero and I by Juan Ramón Jiménez Tar Baby by Toni Morrison Cuba, Haiti and The Dominican Republic by John Edwin Fagg Why are all the Black Kids Sitting together in the Cafeteria by Beverley Daniel Tatum, PhD Ethnicity,Race and Nationality in the Caribbean by Juan Manuel Carrión . . #bookstagram #books #bookish #booknerd #bookworm #booklove #booklover #bibliophile #reading #ilovetoread #goodreads #latinx #browngirlsread #latinaswhoread #latinareaders #pocreaders #igreads #ireadbooks #wellreadmujer #bookselfie
Hermanas Who Read is run by the adorable Rosa sisters, Latina readers by the names of Sobeida & Lenis. These two share what they’ve been reading with cute selfies with current reading material along with photos that also showcase their super cute nails. What I love best are their many pics of their mini trips showcasing their book hauls and their mini reviews and impressions of what they read. The sisters cover a wide range of books from best sellers to YA to books with recent film adaptations to even some volumes of manga. Hashtags that this bookstgram operates under include: #wellreadmujer and #latinaswhoread
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Day 1️⃣4️⃣ of @forcoloredgirlsbookclub October Bookstagram Challenge: favourite non-fiction ~ When They Call You A Terrorist (A Black Lives Matter Memoir) by Patrisse Khan-Cullors & Asha Bandele. ? This is one of a number of non-fiction reads I’ve found incredibly impactful so far this year but it’s the one I find myself coming back to and reflecting on most frequently. And the reason for this is because, well ..it surprised me (I love a book that does this!). Why I hear you ask? Because, although I had anticipated feeling all sorts of ways (rage, frustration, sadness, despair, disbelief, solidarity, injustice, more rage..) about much of what I read within the book’s 253 pages (and all were keenly felt), I hadn’t quite bargained on finding myself firmly within the embrace of what I can only describe as a deeply affecting love story. And no, not in the sense of a romantic love story (although these too are featured) but rather one of a woman’s fierce, unconditional and indefatigable love for a brother, for a father, for a people/community and ultimately for a movement amidst untold, manifest trauma. Love is the propelling force, the lens and the balm and Khan-Cullors does well to somehow keep this front and centre at the same time as relaying the fraught and emotionally & physically challenging lived realities of being black in contemporary America. As uncle Jimmy so eloquently reasoned, “Love takes off the masks we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within” ? – James A.Baldwin #whentheycallyouaterrorist #ablacklivesmattermemoir #patrissekhancullors #ashabandele #forcoloredgirlsphotochallenge #Bookstagram #bookstagramphotochallenge #favouritenonfictionreads #diversereads #missdeereads #WRBG #fortheloveofbooks #bookwormforlife #blacklivesmatter
Dee runs a unique page here. It is a perfect mashup of art by mostly Black and Brown artists featuring Black and Brown folks while also functioning as a bookstagram page. This is part digital museum, part library. Throw in clips from Dee’s outings for book signings, artist talks and even concerts, and you have a wonderful rabbit hole to fall down and get lost in. If you have a commute that gets long one evening or a few minutes to kill while waiting in super long line while shopping, this is the spot. Self described as a “Bespectacled shutterbug, book junkie, art lover and sometime professional vacationist”, Miss Dee has the life I want if we’re talking about IG envy with her many beautiful photos in different places and her eye for captivating art. Hashtags this bookstgram page operates under include: #missdeereads and #fortheloveofart.
4.) Black Girls Lit
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BOOK REVIEW: Slay ~ Brittney Morris ? Thank you to @simonteen/@simonandschuster for sending me an arc of my most anticipated book of the year! Available 9/24 #partner By day, 17 yr. old Kiera Johnson is an honor student and one of the only black kids at Jefferson Academy. But by night she is the Nubian persona Emerald in the black only MMORPG game, SLAY, which she secretly created. However, when a boy is murdered over a dispute in the game, the media accuses her of "anti-white discrimination" and a racist troll threatens to sue her, expose her identity, and ultimately destroy the only place where Kiera and hundreds of thousands of black gamers have the freedom to be themselves. YO! When I say this book is amazing…it really is! This book is action packed and fast paced from beginning to end and every battle scene and game location is so vividly described that I felt like I was watching a movie or reading the novel with VR headsets on lol! And everything in SLAY, from the battle cards to the hair and character wardrobes, is so unapologetically black that I wish it was a real game just so I could join in on all the fun! Seriously, I need someone to make SLAY a game asap!!! ? My favorite parts of the book were the duel sequences, the conversations on race, analyzations of blackness, and the plots' focus on the importance of having a safe place to both be and express oneself. The novel also has several chapters dispersed throughout where we get to see other SLAYers' pov and experience what the game means to them, which was a added surprise that I really enjoyed. Yes, this book deals with some tough issues that are prevalent in the black community and is another display of black trauma in YA but I think this book still has things to contribute to the ongoing conversation of race and racism in our society and does it in a much more creative way than any book I've read before. This book is similar to THUG but it will also give you all the Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Ready Player One vibes too! Everyone should read this and I can't stress enough how much I absolutely LOVED this book! Rating: ??????????/5 (because "You are a queen, and this is your game!) – Veronika
Black Girls Lit is a page put together and run by “Two Black & Bookish girls who love to read”. What possibly originally started as a tumblr blog and blossomed this here is another worthy contender on this list simply for two friends doing something fun together. And I am a sucker for origin stories with female friendships, especially Black girls and women. Ran by Victoria & Veronika, this page is special for their dedication to reading and featuring books about and written by Black girls. Couple this with their very obvious love for comics, enamel pins, bookmarks, book sleeves and assorted goodies that they love to showcase. Hashtags that this bookstagram operates under: #blackgirlslit, #modveronika and #modvictoria.
5.) WOC Reads
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It's February! And Black History Month! ✊? In Germany the Black community also hosts events for Black History Month, usually in major cities like Berlin and Hamburg and Frankfurt. I don't know if you're familiar with Black German history, but a major part of it is the Afro-German women's movement. This work is about the history of Black Germans as well as personal histories of the particular experience of being Black German women. It is foreworded by Audre Lorde who spent some years in Berlin and kind of mentored the Afro-German community. Check out the film The Berlin Years for more info on that. I definitely recommend this book if you're interested in this topic or just looking for an excellent read. ?? I'm also reading some Black German literature this month. – – ❔ What are you reading this #BHM ❔ • • • #bookstagram #instabook #instaread #wocreads #blackwomenwriters #blackhistorymonth #intersectionality #feminism #racialjustice #audrelorde #berlin #mayayim #katharinaoguntoye #afrogerman #Blackgerman #farbebekennen #showingourcolor #diversebooks #bibliophile #booknerdigans #buch #lesen #reading
Longtime BNP follower and friend Bina is a German woman of color who is an active reader. She follows a philosophy of mostly featuring, reading and reviewing lit from writers who are women of color. The rise of diversity initiatives in the publishing industry such as #DiverseBookBloggers has helped her feel brave and find her voice. What I love about her bookstgram, WOC Reads, is that she doesn’t just feature fiction but non-fiction and academic books as well as speculative genres. There’s everyone from Audre Lorde to Britteney Black Rose Kapri to Nafiza Azad to Traci Chee. I love that she doesn’t avoid audio books and ebooks either! Lastly, I’m a fan of her reviews and her diverse reading challenges like her recently revived Diverse Detective Fiction Month reading challenge. Hashtags that this bookstagram operates under: #wocreads and #diversedetectives.
Cover Photo Credit: Tamis Souza
ROLE CALL: Who are your favorite bookstagrammers? Who are the best kept secrets that consistently give you greatness every time you venture into bookstagram land? Let us know in the comments!
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