Black Joy in YA

This post is all about Black Joy in YA books! These are both new and slightly older titles that focus on the joys found in the day-to-day life of young black teens. There are some struggles (what’s life without a little drama after all), but the overall themes are self-acceptance, love,  freedom, and, of course, joy! 

Now That I’ve Found You by Kristina Forest 

Evie Jones was set to be Hollywood’s next big star but after her friend betrays her and leaves her blacklisted she knows the only thing that can fix her image is her uberfamous grandmother. The problem with this plan is that her recluse grandmother has gone missing. Evie has to team up with Milo (a musician she doesn’t trust) to track down her grandmother and save her career. 

If It Makes You Happy by Claire Kann 

When Winnie is crowned Summer Queen in the small town of Misty Haven, she has to balance her new responsibilities with her friendships, a new romance, and her job at her granny’s diner.

The Davenports by Krystal Marquis

The Davenports are one of the few Black families of immense wealth and status in 1910 Chicago, and the two daughters, Olivia and Helen, are finding their way and finding love–even where they are not supposed to.  

Charming as a Verb by Ben Philippe 

Two teens in New York City team up in a dog walking scheme for their own personal reasons, one with a burning ambition to get into Columbia University and the other with the desire to change her image. What starts off as a hustle between two people that can barely stand each other may just turn into something that neither of them really bargained for.  

Seven Minutes In Candyland by Brian Wasson

Kalvin Shmelton has finally perfected his underground candy-selling hustle at school. He keeps his prices reasonable, his inventory fresh, and himself out of the drama. But when a heartbroken Sterling Glistern  barges into the storage closet where he keeps his candy supply, a new source of income unexpectedly presents itself: relationship therapist

Instructions for Dancing by Nicola Yoon 

Evie Thomas doesn’t believe in love anymore. Especially after the strangest thing occurs one otherwise ordinary afternoon: She witnesses a couple kiss and is overcome with a vision of how their romance began and how it will end. After all, even the greatest love stories end with a broken heart, eventually.

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