Mariam's Scintillating Selections

By Solid State Books

By Solid State Books

Bookseller Mariam has put together an eclectic and exciting list of recommendations for your reading pleasure.

Don't Let Me Be Lonely: An American Lyric

Claudia Rankine

$16.00 $14.72

By poet and experimental essayist Rankin. She discusses issues of American egotism, depression, the outcome and feelings of racial tension in America, American media, and much more using a fusion of lyric, visual arts, and essays.

Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches

Audre Lorde

$16.99 $15.63

A collection of speech and essays by activist and feminist Audre Lorde. She covers topics that are personal to her such as racism, sexism, activism, and illness.

Barracoon: The Story of the Last Black Cargo

Zora Neale Hurston

$16.99 $15.63

This book was starting to be written before Hurston’s death. It is a series of interviews between Hurston and the last know living person who experienced the Middle Passage in the Atlantic slave trade, Kossula.

Buy Yourself the F*cking Lilies: And Other Rituals to Fix Your Life, from Someone Who's Been There

Tara Schuster

$27.00 $24.30

A guide to self love and self esteem written in a hilarious and touching way. Gives concrete way to practice self acceptance and Schuster relates each piece of advice with an anecdote of her life.

Magical Negro

Morgan Parker

$15.95 $14.67

A collections of poetry that is touching and deeply personal. Parker is honest and eloquent with her readers about her feelings and experiences of grief, unsure love, everyday Blackness and more.

The Autobiography of My Mother

Jamaica Kincaid

$14.00 $12.88

Written in beautiful language, Kincaid creates an unconventional narrative about a girl who grows up on the island of Dominica. Written in the first person.

Dead Astronauts

Jeff VanderMeer

$27.00 $24.30

A sci-fi novel in a world nothing like Earth. The reader is placed in a town with no name and is in no place. VanderMeer creates a post-apocalyptic world where the characters need to figure out how their society got where they are. Using elements like time travel and clone, VanderMeer creates a novel that sucks to into a new world you don’t want to leave.

The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse

Charlie Mackesy

$22.99 $20.69

A cute graphic novel, a boy makes friends with these different animals. It discusses the importance and bravery of vulnerability. A good book to read with your family.

Electric Arches

Eve L. Ewing

$16.00 $14.72

Using prose, poetry, and visual arts, Ewing explores Black girlhood. It’s imaginative, bright, colorful, surreal and fantastic. Her images are vivid and Ewing forces her readers into her beautifully made world.

Some of Us Did Not Die: New and Selected Essays

June Jordan


A collection of essays and prose by activist June Jordan. It discusses the multiple contradictions of American culture and life. In it, Jordan also uses her experiences as a teacher, activist, artist, Black woman, and citizen to make these criticisms and offer solutions.

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

John Boyne

$9.99 $9.19

This was my favorite book when I was middle school. Taking place in Nazi controlled Europe, the story follows the son of a Nazi officer as he befriends a Jewish child in a concentration camp.


Patricia McCormick

$8.99 $8.27

This is a young adult narrative written in verse. It follows a girl who lives in Nepal as she is sold into sex slavery when she reaches puberty. Each poem is a vignette of her experiences in the brothel. Gripping and enthralling.