Tarana Burke, founder and leader of the #MeToo movement, stands in her home in Baltimore on Oct. 13, 2020. A coalition of three groups vital to the #MeToo movement is collaborating on an initiative to focus on a population that has often felt left out of the conversation: Black survivors of sexual violence. It's been more than three years since the #MeToo movement exploded into view, but Burke, the activist who gave the movement its name, says concrete change has been incremental at best — even more so for the Black community. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark, file)

This is a new year and what better way to kick it off than to find things to do that stimulate the mind. Many of us need an escape from what’s happening in the world and pour into yourselves intellectually, emotionally, and mentally. So why not pick a good book?

Here are the Defender top 5 books published by Black women that you should consider adding to your list.

Gabrielle Union, Author of You Got Anything Stronger?
  1. Gabrielle Union- You got Anything Stronger?

Award-winning actress Gabrielle Union is back with a new book “You Got Anything Stronger?” a sequel to Union’s 2017 New York Times best-selling essay collection “We’re Going to Need More Wine.” She sparks a powerful conversation about feminism, fame, gender, color, and power through her personal experiences. She continues to push the envelope as she guides her readers into her married life, surrogacy journey, and reflecting on the entertainment community’s response to the Black Lives Matter protests. 

NYT Bestselling author, speaker, and podcaster Luvvie Ajayi accepts Africa Diaspora Award. Photo by Solwazi Olusola.
  1. Luvvie Ajayi- Professional Trouble Maker

What is a professional troublemaker? Nigerian-born Chicago-raised author and speaker Luvvie Ajayi Jones has the answers to that question in her latest book “Professional Troublemaker: The Fear Fighter Manual.” The New York Times best-selling author, known for her color vocabulary, sharp wit, and humor, introduces you to a powerful and hysterical way to tackle your fears, speak truth to power, and live fully.

Yvonne Orji, Author of Bamboozled By Jesus
  1. Yvonne Orji- Bamboozled By Jesus

Actress and Comedian Yvonne Orji—best known as Issa Rae’s BFF on the HBO series, Insecure, published her first book “Bamboozled by Jesus: How God Tricked Me Into the Life of My Dream. She gives her readers the secrets they need with a modern-day biblical twist to live the life of their dreams. Each chapter talks about God’s presence through the unforeseen twists and turns and blessings on her way to her journey to success. 

Stacey Abrams, Author of While Justice Sleeps
  1. Stacey Abrams- While Justice sleeps

We dedicate this book to all the fans of non-fiction. Veteran author, voting-rights activist, and politician Stacey Abrams published her new legal thriller “While Justice Sleeps”, a behind-the-scenes look at the law which takes place at the Supreme Court. It gives a glimpse into the pros and cons of the legal system while examining greed and power. 

Tarana Burke, founder and leader of the #MeToo movement, stands in her home in Baltimore on Oct. 13, 2020. A coalition of three groups vital to the #MeToo movement is collaborating on an initiative to focus on a population that has often felt left out of the conversation: Black survivors of sexual violence. It’s been more than three years since the #MeToo movement exploded into view, but Burke, the activist who gave the movement its name, says concrete change has been incremental at best — even more so for the Black community. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark, file)
  1. Tarana Burke- Unbound: My story of liberation and the birth of the #MeToo Movement

Tarana Burke is the activist behind one of the largest movements of our generation… the #MeToo movement. Burke debuts a powerful memoir about her experience with sexual assault at a young age, her fight with guilt, the process of healing, and her pursuit of justice and finding a community. Unbound is a story of her inner strength and perseverance. 

Laura Onyeneho

I cover Houston's education system as it relates to the Black community for the Defender as a Report for America corps member. I'm a multimedia journalist and have reported on social, cultural, lifestyle,...