Solange launches library of rare books by Black authors and creatives

It’s no secret that Solange is just as talented and committed to her community as her big sister Beyoncé. Solange released a collection of poems last year, but she hasn’t put out any music since 2019. Now, Solange and her creative agency, Saint Heron, are providing a curated collection of fifty books of well known Black and Brown authors, writers, and visual artists whose works have either gone out of print or can only be found by “literary aficionados.” Saint Heron stated on their website that they wanted to inspire the Black community to explore “the impact of Blackness in creative innovation throughout history.” The community library will have a guest curator each season who will select several titles that members of the library can borrow for up to 45 days. Below are a few more details via CNN:

The initiative launched this Monday, and features a curated collection of 50 books that readers in the US can borrow for up to 45 days. The collection spans fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, visual arts and more, and is directed at students, artists, designers, musicians and literary aficionados.

“We hope that by encountering these works, our community is inspired to further explore and study the breadth of artistic expression and the impact of Blackness in creative innovation throughout history,” Saint Heron says on its website.

The library’s collections will vary by season, each compiled by a guest curator. Behind the first batch of books is Rosa Duffy, founder of the Atlanta-based book shop For Keeps Books, which specializes in rare and classic Black books and also functions as a community space. That collection will be available through November, according to Variety.

Many of the authors featured in Saint Heron’s initial collection will likely be familiar to bookworms: Octavia Butler, Gwendolyn Brooks, Langston Hughes, Audre Lorde and Ntozake Shange are among the big names. Duffy, however, highlights works of theirs that might be lesser known.

“For this Saint Heron Library collection, it was really focusing on the people that we know and love, but we might not know the details of what they do,” Duffy said in an interview with Saint Heron. “So highlighting these artists, I think that’s really important, because then you get to the different mediums and the different spaces that we can move throughout that we might not always be affirmed that we can move through.”

“The library is so that these things that were meant to be in our hands are just in our hands in the same way that they were printed in the East Village, handed out for $1.50 by the droves,” Duffy said. “That’s kind of what I’m trying to mimic or duplicate.”

[From CNN]

I really like this initiative because I know there are a ton of Black writers and artists that I have never heard of. I am also sure that some of my favorite Black writers and artists have work that I have never seen. I love that the library will be loaning the original items. There is something very special about the idea of being able to hold the original works of some of my favorite authors and artists in my hands. I also like that the service is free for those in the U.S. In order to borrow books from the library, members only have to pay for the shipping and return.

I also like the fact that this service is being offered to Black students, artists, and literature enthusiasts. I feel that having access to this sort of history will definitely inspire those in that space. I am going to go to the website and see if I can join. I love literature and history.


Photos via Instagram

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10 Responses to “Solange launches library of rare books by Black authors and creatives”

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  1. Lala11_7 says:

    I am LOVING the moves she has been making❣ But I saw even from her FIRST album how talented she is and a different way than her big Sis!

  2. tempest prognosticator says:

    Very cool. Well done, Solange!

  3. Jess says:

    She is so awesome. What a fantastic idea.

  4. teecee says:

    This is incredible!!!

  5. Kfg says:

    This is awesome!

  6. Merricat says:


  7. Alarmjaguar says:

    As an historian, I love this idea. Incredible – I especially like the point that so much of this literature was meant to be easily accessible to the community when it was first published. Really looking forward to seeing how this develops.

  8. Betsy says:

    Persephone Books in England does something similar – it highlights (now) unknown authors (mostly women). I really love when artists who haven’t gotten their due or who have been forgotten get picked back up into the zeitgeist. Good on Solange.

  9. Molly Fulton says:

    She is really my favorite Knowles sister.