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Mahogany L. Browne Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Publication Order of Picture Books

Woke Baby (With: Theodore Taylor III) (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Collections

Unlikely & Other Sorts (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
His Rib: Stories, Poems & Essays by Her (With: Patricia Smith) (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
#dear Twitter: Love Letters Hashed Out Online in 140 Characters or Less (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Toss the Earth: Poems That Move Us (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Smudge (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
Redbone (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
Kissing Caskets (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Black Girl Magic (With: Jess X. Snow) (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
i remember death by its proximity to what i love most (2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
Chrome Valley: Poems (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of BreakBeat Poets Books

The BreakBeat Poets, Vol. 2: Black Girl Magic (With: Idrissa Simmonds,Jamila Woods,Patricia Smith,Athena Dixon,J.P. Howard) (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Citizen Illegal (By: José Olivarez) (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

Women of Resistance(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Woke: A Young Poet's Call to Justice(2020)Description / Buy at Amazon

Mahogany L Browne is a vocalist, organizer, writer and poet. Browne was born in Oakland California and started writing when she was just four years old and in kindergarten. In high school, she was forced to drop out since her teacher forbade her from writing poetry in her English honors class. Making use of her experiences with oppression, addiction, sexism, and racism, she was inspired to write her very popular brand of poetic novels. Her spoken word performances created a platform for girls and women to feel heard and empowered. Even though she dropped out of high school, she went on to attend the Pratt Institute where she got her MFA in Activism and Writing. She would also become the institute’s Black Lives Matter program director and founder of the Women Writers of Color Reading Room. Alongside the likes of Sherina Rodriguez Sharpe, Amanda Johnstone, Jericho Brown and Jonterri Gadson they founded the #BlackPoetsSpeakOut a social active literary collective that was inresponse to the Mike Brown murder.

Browne’s most profound impact that would lead her to choose a career as an author was the novel “The Bluest Eye.” Growing up, she had to deal with rampant colorism in California and it was in the novel that she read things that reflected some of her insecurities. However, the one piece of literary fiction that made her a huge fan of storytelling form was Sapphire’s Push. It was a heart wrenching story that fascinated her so much that she felt like she should get in there and protect the character from the world. Mahogany Browne found herself crying at the many challenges the character had to deal with and when it touched a particularly painful nerve ,she threw the book at the wall. The insinuation was that black girls cannot win or that was the interpretation her teenage mind could come up with. It would take another week before she picked up the novel again and several weeks of healing once she was done reading it. While it was not the last time she was frustrated by colorism, it had a profound effect on what trajectory she would later take in life.

Mahogany L Browne’s work has been featured in the likes of the Academy of American Poets, Poetry, BET and Bustle among many other outlets. She has also released an album titled Sheroshima and five LPs. She is the winner of several fellowships over the years including the Rauscheneberg, Agnes Gund, Poets House, Air Serenbe and Cave Canem literary fellowships. She has appeared on Brave New Voice on HBO and on PBS Newshour reading “Black Girl Magic,” her very popular poem. As a member of international arts exchange group “Global Poetics” she has been on several tours across the world. She currently works at the MFA program for St. Francis College where she is the Poetry coordinator. She also publishes the Penmanship Books and works for the non profit literary organization “Urban Word NYC” as an artistic director. She makes her home in Brooklyn in New York City.

“Chlorine Sky” by Mahogany L Browne is a novel written in verse in the format favored by Nic Stone and Elizabeth. Just like the works of these venerable writers, Browne’s work can be in the same genre. The lead is Skyy who is often having to deal with a best friend that is anything but and a mean half sister. She is learning how to focus on what is good for her rather than getting into toxic relationships. She is also slowly but surely learning how best to stand up for herself. In recent times, she has started playing basketball and swimming and while doing this she makes a new friend. Her best friend does not like that she is no longer so vulnerable and dependent on her and grows distant. It is an excellent exploration of how hard it can be to lose friends and how to navigate the helpless and hopeless feelings that may ensue. Told in verse it is even more profound.

Mahogany L Browne’s “Woke” is a beautiful children fiction work that has some fascinating illustrations by Theodore Taylor III. Jason Reynold’s who is the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature also made some contributions. Browne writes some great poems all around that it is hard to choose just one. Many share familiar experiences that most young people would have gone through in their pre teen years. “Rock the Boat” by Elizabeth Avecedor is among many of the poems that are so interesting that you would just want to read them over and over again. If you are looking for something more contemporary such as a discussion on privilege, there is “What’s In My Toolbox” by Olivia Gatwood. The poem and many others would be great at teaching learners to use available resources for the uplifting and betterment of others.

Mahogany L Browne’s “Black Girl Magic” is a tribute to inner strength, struggles and the triumphant spirit of black women and girls that is illustrated by Jess X Snow. According to the author, the rules for black women are; do not have an opinion, do not share your opinion, do not smile in public, do not wear high heels, do not wear red lipstick. Other even worse rules were; carry households and families, weaves, and other burdens but never your own aspirations or dreams. These are the rules that black women and girls are supposed to live by but Browne asserts that rules are made to be broken. She cites the examples of intelligent, talented and fierce women that have made it despite the tough circumstance. As such, she asserts that anyone can make their own path and get what they deserve. She says that every black woman and girl is growing into a beautiful woman every single day given that each one of them has Black Girl Magic inside them. The raw art by Snow combined with the emotional power words by Browne make for a seamless but encouraging, uplifting and honest exploration of black womanhood.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Mahogany L. Browne

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