Sacramento holds its fourth Black Book Fair

Why it's important to recognize authors of color.

Friday, June 2, kicks of Sacramento’s fourth annual Black Book Fair, with the theme of “Black Books Matter.”

Organizer Faye Wilson Kennedy says despite the success of many black authors, including Margot Lee Shetterly, the author of “Hidden Figures,” the bestseller turned award-winning movie, a book fair celebrating black authors is still necessary.

“It’s helping people expand their minds, and it’s introducing people to the breadth and depth of black literature,” Wilson Kennedy said.

One of the event’s featured authors, Suzette D. Harrison, is promoting her most recent book, “My Joy," a comedic novel set in Sacramento.

Harrison talked about the decision to self-publish her two most recent novels.

“If you believe that you have something that has legitimacy and value, you publish yourself,” Harrison said.

Harrison said she was rejected by many publishers and authors before reaching the decision to go out on her own. She says she believes race may have been a factor.

“A lot of time the response was this is not for us,” Harrison said. “You do, unfortunately, sometimes have that inkling in the back of your head as an author of color that this is rejected because it doesn’t appeal to the larger dominant [culture].”

With multiple venues and events for adults and children, Wilson Kennedy says the goal of the Black Book Fair is to both connect black readers to black authors and to introduce those authors to all readers, regardless of race.

“Reading helps people understand their history. It helps them understand where they’re going. It will help them be able to project into their future,” Wilson Kennedy said.

Event details can be found on the book fair’s website.

© 2017 KXTV-TV


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