Reading List: Literature by Black Trans/Non-binary/GNC Writers

This year, in honour of Transgender Awareness Week and Trans Day of Remembrance, PEACH has decided to spotlight the voices of Black trans, non-binary, and GNC writers. As both part of our Decolonise Your Bookshelf initiative, and as an initiative in itself, we have started a reading list dedicated solely to writings by Black trans, non-binary, and GNC writers. In the demand that we centre the voices and experiences of Black trans people regularly and not just one week a year, we will be updating this list throughout the year on top of our regular Decolonise Your Bookshelf Reading List. As the year goes on, we hope to branch out beyond writing into art, film, performance, and more. 

This is a minuscule effort and one that must be part of a larger collective push towards Black trans liberation. We also encourage direct action. If you have spare funds, please donate directly to some of the funds listed through the #BlackTransCrowdFund hashtag on Twitter (thank you to the Barts and the London LGBT+ Society for making us aware of the hashtag). Alternatively, you can donate to the Marsha P. Johnson Institute here.

Prose fiction

Akwaeke Emezi:

  • Freshwater
  • Pet
  • The Death of Vivek Oji

Kacen Callender:

  • This is Kind of an Epic Love Story
  • King and the Dragonflies 
  • Hurricane Child 
  • Felix Ever After 

Dane Figueroa Edidi:

  • Yemaya’s Daughters

The Ghetto Goddess Series

  • Brew: A Novel
  • Keeper: A Novel

The C. Muhammad Series

  • Wither: A Novella
  • Bone: A Novella

Islands of Blood and Storm Series

  • Queen of the Conquered 
  • King of the Rising 

Rivers Solomon:

  • Unkindness of Ghosts
  • The Deep

Prose non-fiction

Cameron Awkward-Rich:

  • ‘“She of the Pants and No Voice”: Jack Bee Garland’s Disability Drag’ in Transgender Studies Quarterly
  • ’Thinking Black [Trans] Gender’ in American Quarterly
  • ‘Trans, Feminism or Reading Like a Depressed Transsexual’ in Signs: Journal of Woman in Culture and Society 
  • ‘The Fiction of Ethnography in Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s Herland’ in Science Fiction Studies

The Lady Chablis:

  • Hiding My Candy: The Autobiography of the Grand Empress of Savannah

Julius Kaggwa:

  • From Juliet to Julius

Janet Mock:

  • Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More
  • Surpassing Certainty: What My Twenties Taught Me 

Toni Newman:

  • Rise-The Transformation of Toni Newman

C. Riley Snorton:

  • Black on Both Sides: A Racial History of Trans Identity
  • ‘”A New Hope”: The Psychic Life of Passing’ in Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy 
  • ‘Gender Trouble on Triton’ in No Tea, No Shade: New Writings in Black Queer Studies
  • ‘Gender. Keywords’ in African American Studies
  • ‘Trapped in the Epistemological Closet: Black Sexuality and the ‘Ghettocentric Imagination’ in  Souls: A Critical Journal of Black Politics, Culture and Society
  • ‘On the Question of “Who’s Out in Hip Hop”’ in Souls: A Critical Journal of Black Politics, Culture and Society 
  • ‘Trans Necropolitics: A Transnational Reflection on Violence, Death, and the Trans of Color Afterlife’ co-authored with Jin Haritaworn in Transgender Studies Reader
  • ‘An Ambiguous Heterotopia: On the Past of Black Studies’ Futures’ in The Black Scholar

Tenika Watson:

  • My Life is No Accident

J Mase III:

  • And Then I Got Fired: One Transqueer’s Reflections on Grief, Unemployment & Inappropriate Jokes About Death


Travis Alabanza:

  • Before I Step Outside [You Love Me]

Cameron Awkward-Rich:

  • Dispatch
  • Sympathetic Little Monsters
  • Transit 

Jay Bernard:

  • Surge 
  • English Breakfast 
  • The Red and Yellow Nothing 
  • Other Ubiquities
  • Your Sign is Cuckoo, Girl 

jay dodd:

  • The Black Condition ft. Narcissus

Andrea Jenkins:

  • tributaries: poems celebrating black history
  • Pieces of a Scream 
  • The T is Not Silent

Rickey Laurentiis:

  • Boy with Thorn
  • Prime
  • Whipped

Danez Smith:

  • Don’t Call Us Dead
  • [insert] Boy 
  • Homie
  • hands on your knees
  • Black movie

J Mase III:

  • White Folks Be Trippin’
  • The Black Trans Prayer Book