Check out these new books coming in February

Each month, there are tons of new books to read in multiple genres. We scoured GoodReads.com to find some intriguing titles being released in February by people of color. Check them out!

Each month, there are tons of new books to read in multiple genres. We scoured GoodReads.com to find some intriguing titles being released in February by people of color. Check them out!

“This Close to Okay” by Leesa Cross-Smith
Expected publication: February 2
From the award-winning Southern writer who Roxane Gay calls “a consummate storyteller” comes a cathartic novel about the life-changing weekend shared between two strangers: a therapist and the man she prevents from ending his life.

On a rainy October night in Kentucky, recently divorced therapist Tallie Clark is on her way home from work when she spots a man precariously standing on the side of a bridge. Without a second thought, Tallie pulls over and jumps out of the car into the pouring rain. She convinces the man to join her for a cup of coffee, and he eventually agrees to come back to her house, where he finally shares his name: Emmett.

Over the course of the emotionally charged weekend that follows, Tallie makes it her mission to provide a safe space for Emmett, though she hesitates to confess that this is also her day job. But what she doesn’t realize is that he’s not the only one who needs healing—and she’s not the only one with secrets.

Alternating between Tallie and Emmett’s perspectives as they inch closer to the truth of what brought Emmett to the bridge’s edge—as well as the hard truths Tallie has been grappling with in her own life—”This Close to Okay” is a vibrant, powerful story of two strangers brought together by wild chance at the moment they needed each other most.

“Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America, 1619-2019” by Ibram X. Kendi, Keisha N. Blain
Expected publication: February 2
An epoch-defining history of African America, the first to appear in a generation, “Four Hundred Souls” is a chronological account of 400 years of Black America as told by 90 of America’s leading Black writers.

Curated by Ibram X. Kendi, author of the No. 1 bestseller “How To Be an Antiracist,” and fellow historian Keisha N. Blain, “Four Hundred Souls” begins with the arrival of 20 enslaved Ndongo people on the shores of the British colony in mainland America in 1619, the year before the arrival of the Mayflower.

In 80 chronological chapters, the book charts the tragic and triumphant 400-year history of Black American experience in a choral work of exceptional power and beauty.

Contributors include some of the best-known scholars, writers, historians, journalists, lawyers, poets and activists of contemporary America who together bring to vivid life countless new facets to the drama of slavery and resistance, segregation and survival, migration and self-discovery, cultural oppression and world-changing artistic, literary and musical creativity. In these pages are dozens of extraordinary lives and personalities, rescued from the archives and restored to their rightful place in America’s narrative, as well as the ghosts of millions more.
“Four Hundred Souls” is an essential work of storytelling and reclamation that redefines America and changes our notion of how history is written.

“Love Is a Revolution” by Renée Watson
Expected publication: February 2
From New York Times bestselling and award-winning author Renée Watson comes a new young adult novel—a love story about not only a romantic relationship but how a girl finds herself and falls in love with who she really is.

When Nala Robertson reluctantly agrees to attend an open mic night for her cousin/sister/friend Imani’s birthday, she finds herself falling in instant love with Tye Brown, the MC. He’s perfect, except … Tye is an activist and is spending the summer putting on events for the community when Nala would rather watch movies and try out the new seasonal flavors at the local creamery. In order to impress Tye, Nala tells a few tiny lies to have enough in common with him. As they spend more time together, sharing more of themselves, some of those lies get harder to keep. As Nala falls deeper into keeping up her lies and into love, she’ll learn all the ways love is hard, and how self-love is revolutionary.

In “Love Is a Revolution,” plus size girls are beautiful and get the attention of the hot guys, the popular girl clique is not shallow but has strong convictions and substance, and the ultimate love story is not only about romance but about how to show radical love to the people in your life, including to yourself.

“The Gilded Ones” (Deathless #1) by Namina Forna
Expected publication: February 9
Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs.

But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity—and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death.

Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki—near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire’s greatest threat.

Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she’s ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be—not even Deka herself.

“Game Changer” by Neal Shusterman
Expected publication: February 9
An explosive new novel by the author of the National Book Award-winning “Challenger Deep” and the New York Times bestselling “Arc of a Scythe” series, about the limited ways we see our world—and how a jolt out of the ordinary can upend the universe.

All it takes is one hit on the football field, and suddenly Ash’s life doesn’t look quite the way he remembers it.

Impossible though it seems, he’s been hit into another dimension—and keeps on falling into universes that are almost but not really his own, each one stranger than the last.
And if he isn’t careful, the world he’s learning to see more clearly could blink out of existence …

“The Iron Raven” (The Iron Fey: Evenfall #1) by Julie Kagawa
Expected publication: February 9
You may have heard of me …

Robin Goodfellow. Puck. Prankster, joker, raven, fool … King Oberon’s right-hand jester from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The legends are many, but the truth will now be known as never before, as Puck finally tells his own story and faces a threat to the lands of Faery and the human world unlike any before.

With the Iron Queen Meghan Chase and her prince consort, Puck’s longtime rival Ash, and allies old and new by his side, Puck begins a fantastical and dangerous adventure not to be missed or forgotten.

“Honey Girl” by Morgan Rogers
Expected publication: February 23
A refreshingly timely and relatable debut novel about a young woman whose life plans fall apart when she meets her wife.

With her newly completed PhD in astronomy in hand, 28-year-old Grace Porter goes on a girls’ trip to Vegas to celebrate. She’s a straight A, work-through-the-summer certified high achiever. She is not the kind of person who goes to Vegas and gets drunkenly married to a woman whose name she doesn’t know … until she does exactly that.

This one moment of departure from her stern ex-military father’s plans for her life has Grace wondering why she doesn’t feel more fulfilled from completing her degree. Staggering under the weight of her father’s expectations, a struggling job market and feelings of burnout, Grace flees her home in Portland for a summer in New York with the wife she barely knows.

In New York, she’s able to ignore all the annoying questions about her future plans and falls hard for her creative and beautiful wife, Yuki Yamamoto. But when reality comes crashing in, Grace must face what she’s been running from all along—the fears that make us human, the family scars that need to heal and the longing for connection, especially when navigating the messiness of adulthood.

Where to buy

The Repository
Select Rite Aid Stores
Spee-D Foods
Buehler's Fresh Foods
Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations
Aultman Hospital Gift Shop
Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop
Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace
Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations
News Depot
Avenue Arts Marketplace
Yum Yum Tree Alliance
Grapes in a Glass