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28 Black Self-Help Books to Add to Your Reading List


Books by Black authors.

Black poetry books.

Self-help books for African Americans.

Self-improvement books to read.

Black self-help books.


Many people want to change their approach to life in many different areas but often don’t know how. These Black authors tackle everything from trauma, insecurities, relationships, financial success, leadership, and more.


This list of Black self-help books includes a book for everyone. Readers are encouraged to confirm the information before purchasing.

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Career/ Finance


Cincinnati Black AuthorsMoney Seeds: 30 Financial Principles 

Lawrence Cain
Money management is not always the easiest. Let this book assist you with attaining clarity around your finances and strategies to succeed financially.




The Nonfiction Outline Book: How to Write a Book Includes 50 Outlines

Frankie Johnnie
This book is perfect for nonfiction authors. It shares strategies to streamline arguments and then outline them. Keeps writers from repetitions or tangents.




The Uncommon Millionaire: Financial Success Begins with Behavior 

Al Riddick
Al’s common-sense approach is mixed with humor accompanied by personal stories of financial challenge and triumph. Also, his story will capture your attention and prompt you to maximize your financial potential.




Cincinnati Black AuthorsVision. Future. Reality: How to Budget Like a Boss 

Emerald Sparks
Take back control of your pocketbook and live the life you want to live.




The Capacity to Succeed 

Melvin J. Gravely, II, Ph.D.
Dr. Mel Gravely unpacks a well-researched approach for minority firms to build an ongoing capacity to succeed.




Related Article: Great books about race, diversity and inclusion.





UnRefinedUnRefined: Still Learning, Still Growing 

Kiya Renae
Kiya Renae provides readers with an intimate look into her life, her thoughts, and her experiences through reflective pieces.




Cincinnati Black AuthorsAgainst All Odds, Persevere! Finding Peace Through the Pain 

Veronica McCall
This is a book of several short stories of real women sharing their testimonies. Topics include loss and grieving, domestic violence, divorce, suicide, being a single parent, and more.




Finding My Sparkle

Morgan Angelique Owens
A story of finding self-love… through low self-esteem, weight issues, self-hate and self-empowerment. Find your inner sparkle.




Cincinnati Black AuthorsLife… Before and After Cerebral Palsy 

Tammy Floyd-Westmoreland
A look into what it was like being a young teen mother of a child with a disability. She talks about the trials and tribulations and dealing with diversity and disappointment.




The Sky Falls Twice

Lora M Ward-Clark
Follows Lora’s journey as she shares her experience of dealing with the many different stages of grief. Experiencing death as early as eight years old when her best friend died from leukemia, shocked her after being told she would never see her friend again. The emotions, depression, and acceptance from her dad and husband both losing their battle with lung cancer took her on a journey to identify the invisible string holding her back in her search for healing.

Naughty By Nature

Daren Ward, Sr.
Life is 90% what happens to you and 10% what you do with it. This book gives biblical strategies on how to deal with everyday life. “We have no control over what circumstances bring us into this world, but where this life takes us is totally up to us!”



Related Article: Books for African American children ages 3 – 12.



Leadership/ Self Development


Cincinnati Black AuthorsWhen Your Soul Whispers

Licia Thompson, CPC, ELI-MP
This author provides strategies for leaders to redefine values and move forward after life’s transitions. Readers will receive insight and help with the struggle of change, tools to initiate action with confidence and more.






Cincinnati Black AuthorsUnwavering Perseverance 

Mary Wineberg
The story of Olympian and Cincinnati Black writer Mary Wineberg is of extraordinary perseverance. She overcame astronomical odds and monumental challenges to grace the top step of the Olympic Podium.




As Sure As Tomorrow Comes 

Danielle and Christopher Jones
Cincinnati Black writers Danielle and Christopher Jones were married for better or worse. Unemployment. A car accident. A terrifying medical diagnosis. The death of their 10-day-old son, Junior. They never imagined they would experience all those things in their first few years of marriage!




Black Girl Magic Within

Carol Tonge Mack
A look into experiences of being an immigrant who is black and female. Carol’s memoir is told with love, humor, wisdom, and a sense of endurance.


Related Article: Good books every African American teenager should read.





We Live for the Political Power of We BookWe Live for the We: The Political Power of Black Motherhood (2019)

Dani McClain
A warm, wise, and urgent guide to parenting in uncertain times. Written by a longtime reporter on race, reproductive health, and politics.




Cincinnati Black AuthorsBold Love: A Letter to My Young Sisters

LPC, Terri M. Bolds MS
Bold Love speaks to young ladies and women who may not understand their behaviors’ pathology.





Grand Gallery Art Collection: Coloring Bool Vol. 1

Olivia Jones
This book features various coloring pages of Black Beauty for children ages six to eight years old.



Related Article: Do you know where Cincinnati’s Black-owned bookstore is located?





the Rapture

The RAPture: The Thin Line Between God and Hip Hop

Dr. Mike Scruggs
Exploring the connection of hip-hop’s origin in New York City to its impact on
society and how religion has its hands in all of it. The book shows how clearly defining our relationship with God and hip-hop makes it possible to love both.




Biblical Role Models: A Guide to a Deeper Marriage 

Antria Goss
This book will help you understand God’s purpose. The book is designed for use by couples, marriage classes, and group studies.




Wise Up Challenge: Keys to Living a Wealthy, Successful, and Fulfilling Life 

Chenelle B. Price
Are you up for the challenge? The Wise Up Challenge was created to impact people of all ages and backgrounds. The book serves as a devotional that motivates and inspires God’s people.




Healing Beauty BookHealing Beauty 

Nicole Lee
As a Barber and Cosmetologist, you make one feel more balanced. You are working with their Crown Chakra. Learn the power connection of the human touch.




I Call on You Sis: A Journal for Women and Girls Everywhere 

Zvisinei Dzepasi Mamutse
This book is to help underprivileged girls in Zimbabwe better manage their lives through puberty education. In a world filled with loneliness, depression, suicide, and jealousy, we must be mindful of our response when called upon. Proceeds go to the publication of a Puberty Education Handbook for Girls.




Related Article: Check out these must-read books by Cincinnati authors.




Looking Glass: A Man’s Reflections Within the Scope of Dating & Relationships 

Vernon V. Jackson, Jr.
Looking Glass is for women looking to experience a rare glimpse of a man’s transparency. Furthermore, it is for men looking for better ways to articulate feelings in healthy, positive ways.




Woman to Woman: 10 Ways Women Sabotage Relationships 

Juli Long-Brooks
CEO of iCandi Productions is on the list of Cincinnati black writers who share their experiences with love and heartbreak. Juli shows readers how to overcome the valleys and stand on top of mountains.



Cincinnati Black AuthorsBeautifully Graced, Broken Beginnings 

Precious Carter
This is a story of life, its ups and downs, and ultimately love. Love is a powerful thing; it motivates, builds up, encourages, and causes triumph. May all who read be blessed and encouraged.


Kids/Picture Book

Naomi Pranks Her Mom and Brother

Angel Kennedy 
This is a short story on humor and kindness. Based on Angel Kennedy’s two kids and her daughter’s love of humor, this story would surely be a good read for educators and children.





Related Article: Books About the History and Life of African Americans in Cincinnati


4 Black Poetry Books to Add to Your Bookshelf Right Now


April’s Rain Must Fall 

Robert E. Miller
A blend of distinctive poems intended to ignite the readers’ emotions. Topics include relationships, cultural relativism, and God’s gift of love.




Maggieglenn’s Poetic Expressions

Margaret Gray-Davis
Features poems on social justice, including respect for the rights of minorities.





Cries From the Dark Side of the Moon 

Lauren M. White
This emotional thriller shares real stories and experiences of black women with a poetic twist. Each story allows the opportunity for self-discovery, connection, and self-reflection.





When Love Rises 

Michelle G. Stradford
Discover the many sides to love that exist, from the pain of heartbreak to the joy of a new romance.





Related article: Take these steps to self-publish your book. 



If there are any Cincinnati Black writers we have missed and should be added to our Black self-help books list, please submit the title, author, year published, a 25-word description, a .jpg or .png image of the cover, and a link to purchase to [email protected].



Written by: Marissa Staples


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Written by Crystal Kendrick

Publisher, The Voice of Black Cincinnati