In celebration of Black History Month, we’ll be highlighting a diverse range of books, all written by Black American authors, all of which celebrate and prioritize the 2024 theme, “African Americans and the Arts”. We will be exploring the key influence African Americans have had in the fields of “visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression.” We’ll be featuring a title every day through the month of February.

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History discusses this years theme stating, “African American art is infused with African, Caribbean, and the Black American lived experiences. In the fields of visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression, the African American influence has been paramount. African American artists have used art to preserve history and community memory as well as for empowerment. Artistic and cultural movements such as the New Negro, Black Arts, Black Renaissance, hip-hop, and Afrofuturism, have been led by people of African descent and set the standard for popular trends around the world. In 2024, we examine the varied history and life of African American arts and artisans.”

Todays work is Patty Pinner’s Sweets: Soul Food Desserts & Memories. A beautifully photographed cookbook of sugary sweet soul food desserts, influenced by the women in Patty Pinner’s family.

Growing up in a large African-American family in a small town in Michigan, Patty Pinner spent her childhood helping the women of the house-the Queens of Soul Food-whip up the sweet treats that crowned family dinners, neighborhood gatherings, and church socials. In Sweets, Patty shares her family’s stories, maxims, and magical desserts, many named after family members like Cud’n Daisy, Aint Sug, and My My, her beloved grandmother. Part recipe book, part family history, this sweet-as-can-be cookbook is a heartfelt tribute to women who ruled the home and the kitchen with their wisdom, hearts, and cooking.

Stay tuned for a new book tomorrow!