This month’s Librarian picks celebrate Black History Month.  We have some Black British History, vampires and monsters and computer sex!  For the children we have a tender coming out story and why its important and very necessary to talk about race and difference.

Libraries have partnered with Writing Our Legacy to host creative writing workshops and an Author Q&A. Find out more about Black History Month in Libraries on their Shared Journeys webpage, with book suggestions, Sussex Black History Links and other information.


Top non-fiction: Homecoming Voices of the Windrush Generation by Colin Grant

Homecoming draws on over a hundred first-hand interviews, archival recordings and memoirs by the women and men who came to Britain from the West Indies between the late 1940s and the early 1960s.

These are stories of hope and regret, of triumphs and challenges, brimming with humour, anger and wisdom.  The book is a time capsule and still totally relevant, a rich tapestry of Caribbean British lives.

Colin Grant will be visiting Hastings Library in November to discuss his book, follow us on Facebook and Instagram to keep informed.

Find the P-book here.

Find the E-book here


Top fiction: The Changeling – Victor LaValle

A novel that combines the grit of the real world with myth, fantasy and horror. An epic novel for our anxiety-ridden times, The Changeling is a tale of Race, parenthood, love – in its most raw and brutal form – and ultimately, humanity.

For fans Murakami and Marlon James, this weird and wonderful book manages to stay grounded in believable characters but also features witches and monsters.

In folktales a vampire couldn’t enter your home unless you invited him in. Without your consent the beast could never cross your threshold. Well, what do you think your computer is? Your phone? You live inside those devices so those devices are your homes. But at least a home, a physical building, has a door you can shut, windows you can latch. Technology has no locked doors.

The Changeling is the latest East Sussex Bookclub pick.  This book is available on Libby/Overdrive, until the end of October, with no waits and no holds.

Find the P-Book here

Find the E-book here


Top audio book: Luster by Raven Leilani

The first time we have sex, we are both fully clothed, at our desks during working hours, bathed in blue computer light.”

Edie is just trying to survive. She’s messing up in her dead-end admin job in her all-white office, is sleeping with all the wrong men, and has failed at the only thing that meant anything to her.

This book makes you so glad you are not in your twenties, its uncomfortable and stressful, beautiful and poignant. Its also very honest, explicit and unpleasant.

Find the P-Book here

Find the E-book here

Listen to the Audiobook here


Top children’s fiction: The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta

The Black Flamingo is the story of Michael, a mixed-race child in London with a Jamaican, absent, father and a Greek-Cypriot mother. From the earliest inklings of his sexuality and conception of race, through his teenage years and eventually his drag debut as an adult, Michael struggles with not feeling “black enough” or “Greek enough” or “queer enough” and looking for his place.

Don’t go thinking that this Young Adult story is in any way childish, this is a moving exploration of sexuality, poetry, blackness and love.

I’ve been friendly. I’ve been frightened. I’ve been fake. But I’ve never been fierce. I’ve been frustrated. I’ve been forgotten. I’ve been forgiving. But I’ve never been fierce. I wanna be fabulous. I wanna be flamboyant. I wanna flaunt what I’ve got. I want to be fierce.”

Find the P-Book here


Top children’s non-fiction: What is race? Who are racists? Why does skin colour matter? And other big questions / Claire Heuchan & Nikesh Shukla.

Heuchan and Shukla cut through all of the awkwardness that comes whenever race and racism comes up as a topic and are direct in telling the reader about why it’s important and necessary to talk about race and difference.

It explores the history of race and society, giving context to how racist attitudes come into being. It looks at belonging and identity, the damaging effects of stereotyping and the benefits of positive representation. The authors talk sensitively about how to identify and challenge racism, and how to protect against and stop racist behaviour.

Everybody should read this book!

Find the P-Book here

Have you read any of the books featured this month? If so we’d love to hear what you thought! Leave your reviews in the comments below. Missed August’s book reviews? Catch up on them here.

You can find out more about libraries in East Sussex by visiting the East Sussex County Council website.