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8 Great Black British Bookstores To Discover This Black History Month

Black representation in mainstream literature has long been hard to come by. It is beneficial – enriching, even – for people of all backgrounds to see the black community reflected in complex fictional protagonists and access true narratives of past and present black experiences. So, this Black History Month, explore the titles sold by this list of black-owned booksellers, who all strive to fill in the gaps in mainstream representation. If you’re looking to educate yourself on the African diaspora, black culture, history, politics and identity, look no further than these great Black British bookstores.

Round Table Books – Brixton Village, 97 Granville Arcade, Coldharbour Lane, London, SW9 8PS

A children bookshop that began life as a pop-up but expanded after receiving a brilliant response. Round Table Books specialises in inclusive titles for all ages, but particularly those to inspire, empower and educate little ones.

Philly & Friends

Philly & Friends’ is a children’s brand whose debut book, Who Do I See In The Mirror?, teaches them to see the beauty and confidence in themselves.

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New Beacon Books – 76 Stroud Green Road, London, N4 3EN

First opening back in 1966, New Beacon Books was the UK’s first black publisher and specialist bookstore. As one of the key places in London where you can find African and Caribbean literature, changes to the book industry nearly saw them close forever in 2016, but thankfully with new management and the help of social media, they’ve been able thrive for longer.

Jacaranda Books

An award-winning independent publisher of adult fiction, non-fiction and young adult titles by diverse authors. In 2019 Jacaranda announced their initiative TwentyIn2020, which will see 20 Black British writers’ works published this year.

No Ordinary Bookshop

An online bookstore striving to educate both young children and adults on black history and culture, as well as nurture children’s personal, emotional and social wellbeing through books with diverse representation.

Pepukayi Books – Ma’at Centre, 366a High Road, Tottenham, London, N17 9HT

An African-centred bookshop spanning over 5000 works on black history, art, cultures and politics. Owner, Elder Pepukayi, is a Pan-Africanist who has long been committed to raising aware of the African liberation struggle in the UK.

Sevenoaks Bookshop – 147 High Street, Sevenoaks, TN13 1XJ

A Kent-based bookstore with a broad range of well-known authors’ works. In support the Black Lives Matter movement, they’ve compiled this list of children’s books from talented black writers, which are available to buy in their shop.

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It’s #BlackHistoryMonth and we’re celebrating Black voices here at Sevenoaks Bookshop. We have chosen to highlight a new fiction and non-fiction for both adult and young readers by Black British writers. Our shortlist is ‘The First Woman’ by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi, ‘100 Great Black Britons’ by Patrick Vernon and Angelica Osborne, ‘When Life Gives You Mangoes’ by Kereen Getten @kezywrites and ‘Black and British’ by David Olusoga @olusoga There’s lots to read on black history and experience (so many listed on our website). We’ll be happy to help looking for more recommendations if you pop into the shop too! #blackownedbusinessess #diversebooks #blm

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Black Cultural Archives – 1 Windrush Square, Brixton, London, SW2 1EF

Not quite a bookstore but a library, the Black Cultural Archives’ Reading Room is dedicated to over 8000 books chronicling the experiences of the African diaspora. Here you can also find the library of the racial equality thinktank Runnymede Trust.