I Am Trying

These are all the books I read in 2016:

These are all the books I read in 2016 written by women, POC, and/or non-Americans:

2 out of the 6 writers in “The Manual, Volume 4" are not white men. For books with 10+ contributors, I included them anyway if there was at least one person who is not a white man.

Of the 13 remaining books (not counting the comic compilations), only one is written by a woman who is not white (The Internet of Garbage, Sarah Jeong) and only one is written by a person who is black (The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead).

I’ve got work to do.

I made 2016 the year I’d read more, and now I’m committing 2017 to consciously reading more broadly.

I’ve loosely based my selections per month on holidays and month-long observances, but I also snuck in people/books I’ve been meaning to read anyway.

I made an ambitious list (compared to the 34 books I read this year — 16 of which were comicbooks) of the 53 below.

January: Chinese New Year

February: Black History

March: Women’s History

April: Arab American Heritage (+ Confederate History)

Trawling Wikipedia by month, I found that 7 states still observe Confederate History Month. Those states can fuck off.

May: Asian/Pacific American Heritage, Haitian Heritage

Pretty upsetting that us Asians and Pacific Islanders are all lumped together. So I gave Chinese New Year all of January ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

June: Caribbean American Heritage, LGBT Pride



September: Hispanic Heritage (through October)

October: Filipino American History, LGBT History

November: Native American Heritage, Transgender Awareness


Thanks to Jamie and Janvi for helping me come up with some items on my list. I am so open to any author/book suggestions, especially for groups that are under-/unrepresented in my list.

I’ll leave you with this quote, and let you know how 2017 goes.

Cora didn’t know what optimistic meant. She asked the other girls that night if they were familiar with the word. None of them had heard it before. She decided that it meant trying.

from The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead