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The Barcelona Review


Contemporary Black LGBTQ Writers  

We all know James Baldwin, though if you’re young and haven’t yet read him, by all means get up right now, walk fast to your local bookstore, and purchase Fire Next Time. Poet Audre Lorde is another must-read from the last century. Order online if you must, but if you have an independent bookstore nearby, make the trip.  For our quiz this issue, we’re focusing on more contemporary writers for whom the greats paved the way. Try your hand at guessing the books and you’re in the running to receive a 30-euro (£23 / $33) gift certificate to spend at Amazon; in case of a tie, a name will be drawn. Deadline: Aug. 1, 2021
DEADLINE REACHED and quiz deactivated. To see the answers CLICK HERE


Name the book:

1. Tells the semi-autobiographical story of the protagonist, Ada, who is an ogbanje, exploring their Igbo heritage's spirituality and gender alongside those of Western construction. Among other awards, it was named a Best Book of the Year by the New Yorker.

2. In this an eye-opening and unapologetic memoir (that is much greater than mere disclosure),  the author writes of being poor, Black and transgender, and how she moved ever forward toward her goal of becoming the woman she knew she was meant to be.

3.  In this memoir, the author discusses her experience with weight, body image, and building a positive relationship with food, particularly following her experience as a childhood victim of sexual violence. Winner of the Lambda award for Bisexual Nonfiction.

4. Moving memoir about the author’s navigation of the rough, unyielding boundaries of masculinity in a distinctly Black, Southern, rural world (Louisiana) where he is teased and challenged, depicting as well the social forces that produced that world in the first place. We know him best as an op-ed columnist for The New York Times.

5.  Revolves around the gay relationship between a Black journalist and a bike messenger, both in their twenties, in New York City.  Violent and verging on pornography, it is a study of attitudes to homosexuality in the Black community.

6. ‘Black/Trans/Queer/Rowdy-as-hell Poet with a capital P,’ he is the author of “If I Should Die Under the Knife, Tell my Kidney I was the Fiercest Poet Around,” as well as “And Then I Got Fired:  One Transqueer’s Reflections of Grief, Unemployment, and Inappropriate Jokes about Death.”   Name the poet.

7. A Japanese American chef and his long-time partner, a Black day care teacher, begin questioning their relationship in an exploration that takes in a range of cultures, races, generations and sexual identities all contending with one another.

8.   This speculative fiction vampire novel follows the experiences of a black bisexual heroine whose power and morality challenge assumptions about the vampire myth.

9.   Dystopian fantasy novel set in space in which the “odd-mannered,” dark-skinned protagonist is a sharecropper who’s determined to fight the corrupt caste system within the segregated spaceship she calls home. 

10.  Set in Jamaica, this novel follows a young, Black woman who works on a resort, doing whatever gritty job is asked of her to help fund her younger sister’s education — even if that means leveraging her sexuality to get what she needs.  In addition to providing insight into the reality of Jamaica’s tourism industry, the story also explores the protagonist’s secret love for another woman.

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