Your Story Matters. This is especially true in the African-American community. In recognition of Black History Month, Bounce’s Your Story Matters initiative has enlisted community leaders and icons to share their experiences to inspire hope in others.

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From classic literature to the spoken word art form, the stories of African-Americans have been told in a variety of ways. Here are some selected black authors whose voices have shaped our rich black history.


Your Story Matters is not just about history, but about the present day and the future. Here’s a list of recommended authors from our friends at The Root.
Ta-Nehisi Coates, best known for the recent Between the World and Me and his ongoing column in The Atlantic, publishes his third book, a collection of essays titled We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy. Included in this compilation are some of Coates’ most groundbreaking and provocative essays, including the seminal “Case for Reparations” and “My President Was Black.”
The author of over a dozen novels, Nigerian sci-fi/fantasy legend Nnedi Okorafor released this second offering in her Akata Witch sci-fi series this fall. Okorafor is next set to write an arc of the Black Panther comic for Marvel.
This second full-length collection from Danez Smith, an acclaimed poetry-slam champion who has won virtually every award for young poets, explores blackness, masculinity and gender. It includes Smith’s famed poems “summer, somewhere” and “dinosaurs in the hood“-the former, a portrayal of a pastoral heaven created for slain black boys; the latter calling for films to affirm the lives of black children.
This little book from a literary superstar slipped quietly into 2017 but is one of the most delightful reads of the year. Here, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s customary, elegantly clear, profound prose is couched in the form of a letter to a friend who requests advice on how to raise a feminist daughter. Perfect for any young, as well as grown-up, girls you know.
The prolific poet, writer and educator published his latest poetry collection in early 2017. Dawes’ poems are electric, resonating with controlled energy. Also released this year was New-Generation African Poets: A Chapbook Box Set (NNE), Dawes’ annual anthology of new work by contemporary African poets, co-edited with Chris Abani.
Rising star Morgan Parker’s second collection of poetry embodies a deceptive chaos, a controlled sophistication. Parker, a former editor for Amazon.com’s literary imprint Day One, crafts poems such as “13 Ways of Looking at a Black Girl,” a splatter-collage of words functioning much like a Jackson Pollock or Pablo Picasso painting.
The 3rd book in N.K. Jemisin’s Broken Earth series, The Stone Sky, dropped this year. Jemisin’s world building is amazing and the story is epic. We don’t want to spoil it because, again, it’s the 3rd and final book in the trilogy and is a must read.

“You Belong Here” is an ongoing Bounce initiative that seeks to empower individuals and benefit local communities. These impactful public service campaigns are presented through cooperative partnerships with non-profit organizations and community-minded businesses. With you in mind, Bounce aims to be a resource for information that directly and positively impacts your life.