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  • IRL Author Talk: How to Say Babylon with Safiya Sinclair - July 28 @ 3PM CST
    from $10.00

    The paperback of How to Say Babylon is here and we're celebrating the power of Saifya Sinclair's memoir! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Sunday, July 28 @ 3PM CST

    Where: 2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve you seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Throughout her childhood, Safiya Sinclair’s father, a volatile reggae musician and militant adherent to a strict sect of Rastafari, became obsessed with her purity, in particular, with the threat of what Rastas call Babylon, the immoral and corrupting influences of the Western world outside their home. He worried that womanhood would make Safiya and her sisters morally weak and impure, and believed a woman’s highest virtue was her obedience.

    In an effort to keep Babylon outside the gate, he forbade almost everything. In place of pants, the women in her family were made to wear long skirts and dresses to cover their arms and legs, head wraps to cover their hair, no make-up, no jewelry, no opinions, no friends. Safiya’s mother, while loyal to her father, nonetheless gave Safiya and her siblings the gift of books, including poetry, to which Safiya latched on for dear life. And as Safiya watched her mother struggle voicelessly for years under housework and the rigidity of her father’s beliefs, she increasingly used her education as a sharp tool with which to find her voice and break free. Inevitably, with her rebellion comes clashes with her father, whose rage and paranoia explodes in increasing violence. As Safiya’s voice grows, lyrically and poetically, a collision course is set between them.

    How to Say Babylon is Sinclair’s reckoning with the culture that initially nourished but ultimately sought to silence her; it is her reckoning with patriarchy and tradition, and the legacy of colonialism in Jamaica. Rich in lyricism and language only a poet could evoke, How to Say Babylon is both a universal story of a woman finding her own power and a unique glimpse into a rarefied world we may know how to name, Rastafari, but one we know little about.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    SAFIYA SINCLAIR was born and raised in Montego Bay, Jamaica. She is the author of the memoir How to Say Babylon, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award in Autobiography, a finalist the Kirkus Prize, and longlisted for the Women’s Prize in Non-Fiction and the OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature. How to Say Babylon was named one of the 100 Notable Books of the year by the New York Times, a Top 10 Book of 2023 by the Washington Post, one of The Atlantic’s 10 Best Books of 2023, a TIME Magazine Top 10 Nonfiction Book of 2023, a Read with Jenna/TODAY Show Book Club pick, and one of Barack Obama’s Favorite Books of 2023. How to Say Babylon was also named a Best Book of the Year by The New Yorker, NPR, The Guardian, the Los Angeles Times, Vulture, Harper’s Bazaar, and Barnes & Noble, among others, and was an ALA Notable Book of the Year. The audiobook of How to Say Babylon was named a Best Audiobook of the Year by Audible and AudioFile magazine.

    She is also the author of the poetry collection Cannibal, winner of a Whiting Award, the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ Metcalf Award, the OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Poetry, the Phillis Wheatley Book Award, and the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry. Cannibal was selected as one of the American Library Association’s Notable Books of the Year, and was a finalist for the PEN Center USA Literary Award and the Seamus Heaney First Book Award in the UK, and was longlisted for the PEN Open Book Award and the Dylan Thomas Prize. 

    Sinclair’s other honours include a Pushcart Prize, fellowships from the Poetry Foundation, Civitella Ranieri Foundation, the Elizabeth George Foundation, MacDowell, Yaddo, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Time Magazine, Harper’s BazaarGranta, The Nation, and elsewhere. She is currently an Associate Professor of Creative Writing at Arizona State University.

     

  • IRL Author Talk: The Outsider Advantage with Ciera Rogers - June 20 @ 7PM
    from $10.00

    Celebrate the release of The Outsider Advantage: Because You Don't Need to Fit in to Win with Ciera Rogers!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Thursday, June 20 at 7PM

    Where: 3719 Navigation Blvd, HTX, 77005

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming with book!

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Ciera Rogers is known for being an “Outsider”—and she likes it that way. As the founder and CEO of a multi-million-dollar brand that caters to curvy women of all shades, worn by the likes of Kim Kardashian and championed by Beyoncé, Ciera has rallied the very women the fashion industry is designed to ignore around the radical idea that what makes you different is actually your superpower.

    The Outsider Advantage is for Outsiders like her: the dreamers, doers, and go-getters that society continuously overlooks and underestimates, but who are uniquely equipped to achieve glass-shattering success.

    In this bold and inspiring memoir, Ciera shares the moments in her life that left the biggest impact—being kidnapped at a young age by her estranged father, running hustles in strip clubs, living in her mom’s red Jeep, daring to post her first outfit for sale on Instagram, hitting seven-figures, and buying a home—and unearths the powerful lessons she has taken away from her past and her unorthodox rise, like how to harness what you already have and how to use your trauma as a motivator. She also speaks to feelings of millennial rage, as on her journey, she came to realize that the American Dream is a lie. But she didn’t allow that to stop her from outmaneuvering the system to finally live the life she wanted.

    Arguing that what the world calls limitations—lack of connections, resources, fancy degrees, or even the “right” look—are actually our biggest competitive advantages, Ciera teaches anyone who has ever been overlooked, ignored or underestimated how to embrace their Outsider status to find unstoppable success.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Ciera Rogers is a Los Angeles based fashion designer behind the women’s wear line Babes. As a social media influencer, she uses her reach of 2+ million to spread her message of body positivity, self-acceptance, and empowerment to women worldwide. She and her work have been featured in Fox, Vogue, Mashable, The New York Post, and The New York Journal, among many other publications. The Outsider Advantage is her first book.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Len Cannon is the KHOU 11 News anchor at 5, 6 and 10 p.m. He came to KHOU in 2006. Len is an award winning journalist having won Emmy Awards in local news. And, the National Association of Black Journalist First Place Award and the prestigious Columbia University Dupont, "Silver Baton" award for his reporting as a correspondent for Dateline NBC. He has also won various community awards, including one from the Houston Fire Department. Len is a graduate of Ashland University in his home state of Ohio, where he majored in radio and TV. 

  • IRL Author Talk: God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer with Joseph Earl Thomas - June 25 @ 7:30 PM
    from $0.00

    Celebrate the release of God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer with Joseph Earl Thomas!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, June 25 @ 7:30 PM

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat and RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our store. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    After a deployment in the Iraq War dually defined by threat and interminable mundanity, Joseph Thomas is fighting to find his footing. Now a doctoral student at The University, and an EMS worker at the hospital in North Philly, he encounters round the clock friends and family from his past life and would-be future at his job, including contemporaries of his estranged father, a man he knows little about, serving time at Holmesburg prison for the statutory rape of his then-teenage mother. Meanwhile, he and his best friend Ray, a fellow vet, are alternatingly bonding over and struggling with their shared experience and return to civilian life, locked in their own rhythms of lust, heartbreak, and responsibility.

    Balancing the joys and frustrations of single fatherhood, his studies, and ceaseless shifts at the hospital as he becomes closer than he ever imagined to his father, Joseph tries to articulate vernacular understandings of the sociopolitical struggles he recounts as participant-observer at home, against the assumptions of his friends and colleagues. GOD BLESS YOU, OTIS SPUNKMEYER is a powerful examination of every day black life—of health and sex, race and punishment, and the gaps between our desires and our politics.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Joseph Earl Thomas is a writer from Frankford whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in VQR, N+1, Gulf Coast, The Offing, and The Kenyon Review. He has an MFA in prose from The University of Notre Dame and is a doctoral candidate in English at the University of Pennsylvania. An excerpt of his memoir, Sink, won the 2020 Chautauqua Janus Prize and he has received fellowships from Fulbright, VONA, Tin House, and Bread Loaf. He’s writing the novel God Bless You, Otis Spunkmeyer, and a collection of stories, Leviathan Beach, among other oddities.  

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Joshua Burton is a poet and educator from Houston, TX and received his MFA in poetry at Syracuse University. He is a 2019 Tin House Winter Workshop Scholar, 2019 Juniper Summer Writing Institute scholarship winner, 2019 Center for African American Poetry and Poetics fellowship finalist, received the Honorable Mention for the 2018 Toi Derricotte and Cornelius Eady Chapbook Prize, 2020 Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing finalist, and a 2023 Elizabeth George Foundation grant recipient. His work can be found in Mississippi Review, Gulf Coast, The Rumpus, Conduit, TriQuarterly, Black Warrior Review, Grist, and Indiana Review. His chapbook Fracture Anthology is currently out with Ethel and his debut poetry collection Grace Engine is out with the University of Wisconsin Press.

  • IRL Author Talk: Rooted with Brea Baker - June 29 @ 2PM
    from $0.00

    Celebrate the release of Rooted: The American Legacy of Land Theft and the Modern Movement for Black Land Ownership with Brea Baker!

    This event is in partnership with Project Row Houses.

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, June 29 at 2 PM 

    Where: Project Row Houses (2521 Holman Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to attend the talk or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and programming.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Why is less than 1% of rural land in the U.S. owned by Black people? An acclaimed writer and activist explores the impact of land theft and violent displacement on racial wealth gaps, arguing that justice stems from the literal roots of the earth.

    To understand the contemporary racial wealth gap, we must first unpack the historic attacks on Indigenous and Black land ownership. From the moment that colonizers set foot on Virginian soil, a centuries-long war was waged, resulting in an existential dilemma: Who owns what on stolen land? Who owns what with stolen labor? To answer these questions, we must confront one of this nation’s first sins: stealing, hoarding, and commodifying the land.

    Research suggests that between 1910 and 1997, Black Americans lost about 90% of their farmland. Land theft widened the racial wealth gap, privatized natural resources, and created a permanent barrier to access that should be a birthright for Black and Indigenous communities. Rooted traces the experiences of Brea Baker's family history of devastating land loss in Kentucky and North Carolina, identifying such violence as the root of persistent inequality in this country. Ultimately, her grandparents' commitment to Black land ownership resulted in the "Bakers Acres"—a family haven where they are sustained by the land, surrounded by love, and wholly free.

    A testament to the Black farmers who dreamed of feeding, housing, and tending to their communities, Rooted bears witness to their commitment to freedom and reciprocal care for the land. By returning equity to a dispossessed people, we can heal both the land and our nation’s soul.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Brea Baker has been working on the frontlines for over a decade. She believes deeply in nuanced storytelling and Black culture to drive change, and has commented on race, gender, and sexuality for Elle, Harper’s BAZAAR, Refinery29, THEM, and more. Her writing has been featured in the anthologies OUR HISTORY HAS ALWAYS BEEN CONTRABAND and NO JUSTICE, NO PEACE.

    A Yale alumna, Brea has been recognized as a 2017 Glamour Woman of the Year, a 2019 i-D Up and Rising, and a 2023 Creative Capital awardee. She has spoken at the United Nations' Girl Up Initiative, Yale Law School, the Youth 2 Youth Summit in Hong Kong, the Museum of City of New York, and more.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Kavon Ward is an award-winning spoken word artist and activist. Within the past decade, Kavon has won 1st place at the historic Apollo Theater and has shared the stage with gospel artists Hezekiah Walker, Patti LaBelle, Fantasia, and activists like Joe Madison and Dick Gregory, to perform her piece, “I Am Trayvon Martin” Kavon is the founder of Justice for Bruce’s Beach and has led the historic and successful movement that made it possible for stolen land to be returned to the descendants of Black landowners, Willa and Charles Bruce. The descendants of the Bruces recently sold the reclaimed land to LA County for $20 million dollars. Kavon was named a 35th Senate District, 2022 Woman of the Year by Senator Steven Bradford.

    Kavon has since been quoted in the New York Times, the L.A. Times, the Washington Post, The New Yorker, and a host of other articles. She has interviewed with NPR, 94.7 The WAVE, and a number of other radio stations, to discuss what justice for the Bruce family means and what reparations for Black Americans look like. Kavon has partnered with Patrisse Cullors, of Black Lives Matter, to create a petition calling for restitution and restoration for the Bruce family. Kavon is a reparative justice consultant and Founder and CEO of Where Is My Land, an organization focused on getting Black land back nationally. She is a former Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) fellow and public policy lobbyist. Kavon holds a BA in Communications and a Master of Public Administration.

  • IRL Author Talk: Masquerade with O.O. Sangoyomi - July 10 @ 7PM CST
    from $0.00

    Celebrate the release of Masquerade with O.O. Sangoyomi!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Wednesday, July 10 @ 7:30 PM 

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your spot or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Òdòdó’s hometown of Timbuktu has been conquered by the warrior king of Yorùbáland, and living conditions for the women in her blacksmith guild, who were already shunned as social pariahs, grow even worse.

    Then Òdòdó is abducted. She is whisked across the Sahara to the capital city of ?àngót?`, where she is shocked to discover that her kidnapper is none other than the vagrant who had visited her guild just days prior. But now that he is swathed in riches rather than rags, Òdòdó realizes he is not a vagrant at all; he is the warrior king, and he has chosen her to be his wife.

    In a sudden change of fortune, Òdòdó soars to the very heights of society. But after a lifetime of subjugation, she finds the power that saturates this world of battle and political savvy too enticing to resist. As tensions with rival states grow, revealing elaborate schemes and enemies hidden in plain sight, Òdòdó must defy the cruel king she has been forced to wed by reforging the shaky loyalties of the court in her favor, or risk losing everything—including her life.

    Loosely based on the myth of Persephone, O.O. Sangoyomi’s Masquerade takes you on a journey of epic power struggles and political intrigue which turn an entire region on its head.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    O. O. SANGOYOMI is a Nigerian American author with a penchant for African mythology and history. During a childhood of constantly moving around within the U.S., she found an anchored home in the fictional worlds of books. Sangoyomi is a graduate of Princeton University, where she studied English and African American Studies. Masquerade is her debut novel

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Vaishnavi Patel is the author of Goddess of the River and the instant New York Times bestseller Kaikeyi. A lawyer specializing in civil rights, she likes to write at the intersection of Indian myth, feminism, and anticolonialism. She grew up in and around Chicago and, in her spare time, enjoys activities that are almost stereotypically Midwestern: knitting, ice skating, drinking hot chocolate, and making hotdish. 

  • IRL Author Talk: They Built Me For Freedom with Tonya Duncan Ellis - June 9 @ 2PM
    from $0.00

    Celebrate the release of They Built Me For Freedom: The Story of Juneteenth and Houston's Emancipation Park with Tonya Duncan Ellis!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Sunday, June 9, 2024 @ 2 PM

    Where: Project Row House Community Gallery (2521 Holman Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to attend the event or RSVP WITH BOOK to reserve your copy. 

    Note: Outside copies of They Built Me For Freedom will not be allowed inside the event.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A vibrant, moving picture book about the history of Emancipation Park in Houston, Texas—and the origins of Juneteenth.

    When people visit me, they are freeto run, play, gather, and rejoice.

    They built me to remember.

    On June 19, 1865, the 250,000 enslaved people of Texas learned they were free, ending slavery in the United States. This day was soon to be memorialized with the dedication of a park in Houston. The park was called Emancipation Park, and the day it honored would come to be known as Juneteenth.  

    In the voice and memory of the park itself—its fields and pools, its protests and cookouts, and, most of all, its people—the 150-year story of Emancipation Park is brought to life. Through lyrical text and vibrant artwork, Tonya Duncan Ellis and Jenin Mohammed have crafted an ode to the struggle, triumph, courage, and joy of Black America—and the promise of a people to remember.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tonya Duncan Ellis is a former journalist and the author of the Sophie Washington series. She lives in Houston, Texas. You can visit her at tonyaduncanellis.com.  

     

  • IRL AUTHOR TALK: The Grandest Garden with Gina L. Carroll - June 6 @ 7:30 PM CST
    from $5.00

    Celebrate the release of The Grandest Garden with Gina L. Carroll!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Thursday, June 6, 2024

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to support our programming and the author. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    In this coming-of-age story about the cycle of life in and out of the garden, Bella Fontaine comes to understand as a young woman trying to make her way in the world, that when it’s time to leave home, it’s time—whether you feel ready or not.

    Bella Fontaine is on her own. Fresh out of college and with the winnings from her first international photography competition, she decides to leave Los Angeles to forge a new life in New York City. But will she be able to overcome the trauma of her childhood and her break from home to make it as a successful artist and professional photographer in a new city? Or will her secrets catch up with her ,and keep her from developing the relationships she needs to make her dreams come true?

    We meet young Bella just after her tenth birthday, and her grandmothers, Olivette and Miriam, each with a beautiful, mature garden as different from each other as the two gardeners who tend them. As Bella’s homelife begins to unravel, she relies on her grandmother’s gardens as her refuge for stability and belonging. But when Miriam moves in with Olivette in search of healing, the grandmothers bond in a way that makes Bella feel excluded. What happens next sends Bella out into the world before she is ready.

    The Grandest Garden is a poignant coming-of-age story about the ties that bind us to our people and how to survive when they break.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Gina L. Carroll is the author of A Story That Matters: A Gratifying Way to Write About Your Life and editor of Stories Are Medicine: Writing to Heal, An Anthology. A self-pro-fessed story wrangler, Gina founded StoryHouse Texas, a creative space dedicated to cultivating and amplifying the diversity of vision and voice in story. The Grandest Garden is her debut novel. She currently lives in Houston, Texas. To learn more about Gina, visit www.ginacarroll.com.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Deborah D.E.E.P Mouton is an award-winning writer, director, performer, critic, and the first Black Poet Laureate of Houston, TX. Praised by the NY Times as an artist who “defies categorization”, her genre-bending works span from stage to page, and everything in between. She is the author of Newsworthy (Bloomsday Literary, 2019) which was translated into German (Berichtenswert, Elif Verlag, 2020), Black Chameleon (Henry Holt, 2023), and an upcoming children's book, Hush Hush Hurricane (Kokila Books). Honored as part of Houston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 class, she has been a contributing writer for Glamour, Texas Monthly, Muzzle, and ESPN's Andscape, to name a few.

    Her most recent choreopoem, PLUMSHUGA: The rise of Lauren Anderson, debuted at Stages Theater and made the cover of the NY Times Culture Section. Her forthcoming opera, She Who Dared, composed by Jasmine Barnes, will  debut in Spring 2025. Her memoir, Black Chameleon (Henry Holt & Co, 2023), recently won the the Carr P. Collins award for Best Nonfiction through the Texas Institute of Letters (2024). Order your copy now.

  • IRL Author Talk: Storm: Goddess of Dawn and Barda with Tiffany D. Jackson & Ngozi Ukazu - June 4 @ 7PM
    from $5.00

    Join us to celebrate the release of TWO books, Storm: Goddess of Dawn by Tiffany D. Jackson and Barda by Ngozi Ukazu! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, June 4 @ 7PM

    Where: 2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004

    How: Purchase your TICKET ONLY or RSVP WITH STORM or RSVP WITH BARDA or RSVP WITH BUNDLE (with both books)

    Please reach out if you, your kids or students would like to attend but are not in the financial place to do so. 

    ABOUT THE STORM

    Few can weather the storm.

    As a thief on the streets of Cairo, Ororo Munroe is an expert at blending in—keeping her blue eyes low and her white hair beneath a scarf. Stealth is her specialty . . . especially since strange things happen when she loses control.

    Lately, Ororo has been losing control more often, setting off sudden rainstorms and mysterious winds . . . and attracting dangerous attention. When she is forced to run from the Shadow King, a villain who steals people's souls, she has nowhere to turn to but herself. There is something inside her, calling her across Africa, and the hidden truth of her heritage is close enough to taste.

    But as Ororo nears the secrets of her past, her powers grow stronger and the Shadow King veers closer and closer. Can she outrun the shadows that chase her? Or can she step into the spotlight and embrace the coming storm?

    ABOUT BARDU

    Darkseid is…and life on Apokolips is tough—but then, it is hell after all. And no one knows this better than Barda, Granny Goodness’s right hand warrior.

    But Barda has a secret…she is in love. Or she is drawn to the idea of it anyway, whether it be the beauty of a flower, her affection for her closest friend, Aurelie, or the mysterious and fierce enemy warrior, Orion, who is the only match for Barda’s strength.

    But when Granny decides Barda is becoming too soft, she assigns Barda a task that might be more than she can handle—to break the seemingly unbreakable Scott Free. And as Barda questions why Scott has such hope and what he might have done to promote such hatred from Granny, she finds herself drawn to him in a way she never expected.

    The only thing is, we do not speak of love on Apokolips…

    ABOUT THE AUTHORS

    Tiffany D. Jackson is the New York Times bestselling, award-winning author of YA novels Monday’s Not Coming, Allegedly, Let Me Hear A Rhyme, Grown, White Smoke, Santa in The City, The Weight of Blood, and co-author of Blackout and Whiteout: A Novel. A Coretta Scott King - John Steptoe New Talent Award-winner and NAACP Image Award-nominee, she received her bachelor of arts in film from Howard University and has over a decade in TV/Film experience. The Brooklyn native is currently splitting her time between the borough she loves and the south, most likely multitasking.

     

    Ngozi Ukazu is a DC Comics artist, New York Times-bestselling graphic novelist, and the creator of comics like Check, Please!, BUNT!, and the forthcoming graphic novel FLIP. She graduated from Yale University with a degree in Computing in the Arts, and since 2020 her cartoons have appeared in The New Yorker.

     

  • IRL Artist Talk: Rick Lowe with Ryan Dennis and Assata Richards - May 22 @ 7PM
    Sold out

    *please note Ryan Dennis and Assata Richards will no longer be moderating. 

    Celebrate the first monograph dedicated to Rick Lowe's art practice! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Wednesday, May 22 at 7PM

    Where: The Eldorado Ballroom (2310 Elgin Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to save your seat. RSVP WITH BOOK to get a copy of Rick Lowe's book. Limited books will be available onsite.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

     
    Houston-based artist Rick Lowe is widely known for his pioneering contributions to the development of “social practice art,” work that landed him a MacArthur fellowship in 2014. What few people realize is that he was originally trained as a landscape painter. In recent years, Lowe has increasingly turned back to painting, producing complex multi-panel and quasi-abstract images that are deeply rooted in thirty years of work creating “social sculptures,” recalling the urban fabric of cities around the world that have formed the backdrop of many of his community-based art projects. This book, which brilliantly reproduces Lowe’s paintings, is the first dedicated to the work of this important American artist, focusing on his painterly practice and its origins in his work in the public sphere.

    ABOUT THE ARTIST

    Rick Lowe was born in 1961 in rural Russell County, Alabama, and lives and works in Houston. 

    Collections include the Brooklyn Museum, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami; High Museum of Art, Atlanta; Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; Menil Collection, Houston; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and the UBS Art Collection. Solo exhibitions include Art League Houston (2020–21). He also participated in Documenta 14, Athens (2017). 

    Among Lowes numerous community art projects are Project Row Houses, Houston (1993–2018); Watts House Project, Los Angeles (1996–2012); Borough Project (with Suzanne Lacy and Mary Jane Jacob), Charleston, SC (2003); Small Business/Big Change, Anyang Public Art Program, Korea (2010); Trans.lation, Dallas (2013); Victoria Square Project, Athens (2017–18); Greenwood Art Project, Tulsa, OK (2018–21); and Black Wall Street Journey, Chicago (2021–). 

    In 2013 President Barack Obama appointed Lowe to the National Council on the Arts, and in 2014 he was named a Mac Arthur Fellow. Lowe was a Visiting Fellow at the Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society from 2019-2021. He is currently a professor of interdisciplinary practice at the University of Houston.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNERS

    Ryan N. Dennis is Senior Curator and Director of Public Initiatives at Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (CAMH). Her recent projects include Leonardo Drew’s City in the Garden (2020), Betye Saar: Call & Response (2021), Dusti Bonge: Piercing the Inner Wall (2021), and organizing CAPE Artist-in-Resident Shani Peter’s Collective Care for Black Mothers and Caretakers with the local Jackson community. She is the co-curator of the critically acclaimed exhibition, A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration. Prior to joining the MMA, she served as the Cura­tor and Programs Director at Project Row Houses (PRH) in Houston, where she worked with over 100 BIPOC artists to exhibit their work in the shot-gun houses, she led the creation of the 2:2:2 Exchange Residency Program with the Hyde Park Art Center in Chi­cago and established Project/Site, a temporary, site-specific, commission-based public art program. In 2017, she launched the PRH Fellowship with the Center for Art and Social Engagement at the University of Houston’s Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts. Dennis earned her master’s degree in Arts and Cultural Management from Pratt Institute with a focus in Curatorial Practice. Her writings have appeared in online and print catalogs, journals and publications nationally and internationally. She has been a visiting lecturer and critic at a number of art schools and institutions and has taught courses on community-based practices and contemporary art at the University of Houston. Most recently she was the co-curator of the 2021 Texas Biennial titled A New Landscape, A Possible Horizon (2021) and the guest art editor for Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts.

    Assata Richards is a native of Houston, Texas and received much of her education in East Texas in the community known as “County Line”. After completing her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Houston, she earned a Master’s and PhD from Pennsylvania State University in Sociology with a concentration on political and community participation, research methods and mass incarceration. After serving as a faculty member at University of Pittsburgh, Assata returned to her community of Third Ward in Houston, Texas, where she is living and working with Project Row Houses and serving as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Houston. As a scholar and community organizer, she is fulfilling her lifelong commitment to social change and justice. Assata also serves as the Vice Chair of the Board of Commissioners for Houston Housing Authority, as a appointee of Mayor Annise Parker.

  • IRL Author Talk: If My Flowers Bloom with DeShara Suggs - Joe - May 24 @ 6:30PM
    Sold out

    Celebrate the release of If My Flowers Bloom with DeShara Suggs!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Friday, May 24 at 6:30 PM

    Where: Kindred Stories' Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to serve your seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming. 

    This event is in collaboration with OQUPI HTX.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    If My Flowers Bloom is about desire. Is there room to bloom or does the harvest only come in the afterlife? Is it okay to be Black and queer and woman in this world?

    Overflowing with love and aching for more space, DeShara Suggs-Joe questions the powers that be while longing for space carved out for her flourishing.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    DeShara is a queer, Black poet and visual artist. She co-founded Daughter’s Tongue (an all-women writing collective), worked as the Creative Director of Workshops at Winter Tangerine, and is a former member of the Youth Speaks Collective. She received her MFA in Writing from California College of the Arts and fellowships from Callaloo, the Poetry Incubator, and Pink Door. In 2021, she was nominated for “Best of the Net.” She has published poems in Apogee Lit, Voicemail Poems, Tinderbox Journal, The Texas Review, and elsewhere. She has also been featured on Button Poetry’s YouTube platform and has performed at the likes of Spotify, Yahoo, and Pinterest


  • IRL Author Talk: Pretty with KB Brookins & Kiese Laymon - May 29 @ 7:30 PM
    from $0.00

    Celebrate the release of Pretty: Memoir with author, KB Brookins!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Wednesday, May 29 @ 7:30 PM CST

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat or RSVP with book to support the author and our programming. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    By a prize-winning, young Black trans writer of outsized talent, a fierce and disciplined memoir about queerness, masculinity, and race.

    Even as it shines light on the beauty and toxicity of Black masculinity from a transgender perspective—the tropes, the presumptions—Pretty is as much a powerful and tender love letter as it is a call for change.  

    “I should be able to define myself, but I am not. Not by any governmental or cultural body,” Brookins writes. “Every day, I negotiate the space between who I am, how I’m perceived, and what I need to unlearn. People have assumed things about me, and I can’t change that. Every day, I am assumed to be a Black American man, though my ID says ‘female,’ and my heart says neither of the sort. What does it mean—to be a girl-turned-man when you’re something else entirely?” 

    Informed by KB Brookins’s personal experiences growing up in Texas, those of other Black transgender masculine people, Black queer studies, and cultural criticism, Pretty is concerned with the marginalization suffered by a unique American constituency—whose condition is a world apart from that of cisgender, non-Black, and non-masculine people. Here is a memoir (a bildungsroman of sorts) about coming to terms with instantly and always being perceived as “other”

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    KB BROOKINS is a Black, queer, and trans writer and cultural worker from Texas. They are the author of Freedom House and How to Identify Yourself with a Wound. Brookins has poems, essays, and installation art published in Academy of American Poets, Teen Vogue, Poetry Magazine, Prizer Arts & Letters, OkayplayerPoetry Society of America, Autostraddle, and other venues. They have earned fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, PEN America, Equality Texas, and others.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Kiese Laymon is a Black southern writer from Jackson, Mississippi. Laymon is the Libbie Shearn Moody Professor of English and Creative Writing at Rice University. Laymon is the author of Long Division, which won the 2022 NAACP Image Award for fiction, and the essay collection, How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America, named a notable book of 2021 by the New York Times critics. Laymon’s bestselling memoir, Heavy: An American Memoir, won the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction, the Christopher Isherwood Prize for Autobiographical Prose, the Barnes and Noble Discovery Award, the Austen Riggs Erikson Prize for Excellence in Mental Health Media, and was named one of the 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years by The New York Times. The audiobook, read by the author, was named the Audible 2018 Audiobook of the Year. Laymon is the recipient of 2020-2021 Radcliffe Fellowship at Harvard. Laymon is at work on the books, Good God, and City Summer, Country Summer, and a number of other film and television projects. He is the founder of “The Catherine Coleman Literary Arts and Justice Initiative,” a program based out of the Margaret Walker Center at Jackson State University, aimed at aiding young people in Jackson get more comfortable reading, writing, revising and sharing on their on their own terms, in their own communities. Kiese Laymon was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2022.

  • IRL Author Talk: Love Cake with Douglas Bell - May 18 @ 2PM
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    Celebrate the release of Love Cake with author, Douglas Bell!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, May 18, 2024 at 2 PM

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat. RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Love Cake is contemporary fiction about Bryan Hicks and his transgender girlfriend, Nadia Brooks. Together they own and operate a bakery in conservative Texas. At its red velvet core, Love Cake is a story about how love persists in the face of prejudice and about the value of found family. It speaks to the power of loving people despite the mistakes they make.

    With thought-provoking insight, Douglas Bell in Love Cake, the second book of The Cakes Series duology and the sequel to Cake Walk, rings a bell again on an untold story that teaches how we can find the courage to show up for each other as the world tries to tear us apart.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Douglas Bell is a fiction writer based in the bustling city of Houston, Texas. He draws inspiration from a variety of sources, including the teachings of Buddha and the Dalai Lama, as well as the powerful storytelling of James Baldwin. When he's not writing, you can usually find him hitting the gym, experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen, or staying up to date with the latest fashion trends. 

  • Virtual Author Talk: The Black Girl Survives in This One with Desiree S. Evans and Saraceia J. Fennell - April 29 @ 6PM CST
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    Join Desiree S. Evans and Saraceia J. Fennell along with a few contributors to celebrate The Black Girl Survives in This One! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Monday, April 29 @ 6PM CST

    Where: Virtual Via Zoom 

    How: RSVP ONLY to be sent the Zoom link to attend the event or RSVP WITH BOOK to purchase a copy of the book!

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A YA anthology of horror stories centering Black girls who battle monsters, both human and supernatural, and who survive to the end.

     

    Be warned, dear reader:The Black girls survive in this one.

    Celebrating a new generation of bestselling and acclaimed Black writers, The Black Girl Survives in This One makes space for Black girls in horror. Fifteen chilling and thought-provoking stories place Black girls front and center as heroes and survivors who slay monsters, battle spirits, and face down death. Prepare to be terrified and left breathless by the pieces in this anthology.

    The bestselling and acclaimed authors include Erin E. Adams, Monica Brashears, Charlotte Nicole Davis, Desiree S. Evans, Saraciea J. Fennell, Zakiya Dalila Harris, Daka Hermon, Justina Ireland, L. L. McKinney, Brittney Morris, Maritza & Maika Moulite, Eden Royce, and Vincent Tirado. The foreword is by Tananarive Due.

    ABOUT THE AUTHORS

    Desiree S. Evans is a writer from the Louisiana bayou. She currently lives in New Orleans, where she spins spooky and fantastical tales for kids, teens, and adults. Desiree holds an MFA in Fiction from the Michener Center for Writers at The University of Texas at Austin, as well as degrees in journalism from Northwestern University and international affairs from Columbia University. Connect with Desiree on her website at desiree-evans.com and on Instagram/Twitter at @literarydesiree.

    Saraciea J. Fennell is a Black Honduran American writer, founder of The Bronx is Reading, and creator of Honduran Garifuna Writers. She is also a book publicist who has worked with many award-winning and New York Times bestselling authors. She is the editor of the nonfiction anthology, Wild Tongues Can't Be Tamed, and her work has appeared in Popsugar, Refinery29, and Culturess, among others. Sign up for her newsletter, Black Girl Dreaming, on Substack for more of her writing. She lives in the Bronx with her family and black poodle, Oreo.
  • IRL Author Talk: The Dead Don't Need Reminding with Julian Randall - May 14 @ 6:30 PM
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    Celebrate the release of The Dead Don't Need Reminding with Julian Randall!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, May 14, 2024 @ 6:30 PM 

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat or RSVP with book to support the author and our programming. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    This brilliant, adult nonfiction debut from the acclaimed MG author and poet weaves two personal narratives of recovery and reclamation, spliced with a dazzle of pop-culture

    The Dead Don’t Need Reminding is a braided story of Julian Randall’s return from the cliff edge of a harrowing depression and his determination to retrace the hustle of a white-passing grandfather to the Mississippi town from which he was driven amid threats of tar and feather.
     
    Alternatively wry, lyrical, and heartfelt, Randall transforms pop culture moments into deeply personal explorations of grief, family, and the American way. He envisions his fight to stay alive through a striking medley of media ranging from Into the Spiderverse and Jordan Peele movies to BoJack Horseman and the music of Odd Future. Pulsing with life, sharp, and wickedly funny, The Dead Don’t Need Reminding is Randall’s journey to get his ghost story back.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

    Julian Randall is a contributor to the #1 New York Times bestseller Black Boy Joy and his middle-grade novel, Pilar Ramirez and the Escape From Zafa, was published by Holt in 2022. He has received fellowships from Cave Canem, Tin House, and Milkweed Editions. He is the winner of the 2019 Betty Berzon Emerging Writer Award from the Publishing Triangle, the 2019 Frederick Bock Prize, and a Pushcart prize. His poetry has been published in The New York Times MagazinePloughshares, and POETRY. His first book, Refuse, won the Cave Canem Poetry Prize and was a finalist for an NAACP Image Award. He lives in Chicago

    ABOUT THE INTERLOCUTOR

    Kiese Laymon is a Black southern writer from Jackson, Mississippi. Laymon is the Libbie Shearn Moody Professor of English and Creative Writing at Rice University. Laymon is the author of Long Division, which won the 2022 NAACP Image Award for fiction, and the essay collection, How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America, named a notable book of 2021 by the New York Times critics. Laymon’s bestselling memoir, Heavy: An American Memoir, won the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction, the Christopher Isherwood Prize for Autobiographical Prose, the Barnes and Noble Discovery Award, the Austen Riggs Erikson Prize for Excellence in Mental Health Media, and was named one of the 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years by The New York Times. The audiobook, read by the author, was named the Audible 2018 Audiobook of the Year. Laymon is the recipient of 2020-2021 Radcliffe Fellowship at Harvard. Laymon is at work on the books, Good God, and City Summer, Country Summer, and a number of other film and television projects. He is the founder of “The Catherine Coleman Literary Arts and Justice Initiative,” a program based out of the Margaret Walker Center at Jackson State University, aimed at aiding young people in Jackson get more comfortable reading, writing, revising and sharing on their on their own terms, in their own communities. Kiese Laymon was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2022.

  • IRL Author + Illustrator Talk: Yaya and the Sea with Karen Good Marable & Tonya Engel - April 7 @ 12PM
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    Let's celebrate author, Karen Good Marable and illustrator, Tonya Engel on their new book, Yaya and The Sea!

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A family goes on a trip from the city to the sea in search of renewal in this “lively and lovely…beautiful” (Jacqueline Woodson, National Book Award–winning author of Brown Girl Dreaming) picture book that’s an ode to sisterhood, nature, and being present.

    On the first day of spring, when the city is quiet and still, little Yaya takes the A train down to New York City’s southern shores with her mama and aunties to greet Mama Ocean and celebrate the arrival of a new season through a ritual of letting go of the past and embracing the new.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

    Karen Good Marable is a writer raised in Prairie View, Texas. Her essays, music journalism, and stories have appeared in several books and publications including The New Yorker, Oxford American, The Bitter Southerner,Seventeen, and Essence. After a lifetime of living in Brooklyn, she and her family now reside in Atlanta.

    ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR

    Tonya Engel is a self-taught painter and children’s book illustrator whose work can be found in many picture books, among them Our Lady of Guadalupe, Because ClaudetteImpossible Moon, and the jacket art for Hurricane Child. Her work is inspired by Southern folk artists. Early in her career, she explored abstract painting but soon began to concentrate on figurative form mixed with emotion and expressionistic narrative. Engel lives in Houston, Texa
  • IRL Author Talk: Mo'Lasses with Viktor Givens - March 6 @ 6 PM CST
    $0.00

    Celebrate Viktor Given's book, Mo'Lasses: Ancestral (Re)Memories, Myth 'nd Lore!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Wednesday, March 6 @ 6:00 PM CST

    Where: Kindred Stories' Reading Garden 

    How: RSVP to let us know that you will be present

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    There is magic, reverence and mystery in the spaces, objects and writings of Viktor le. Givens a multi-modal performance artist, whose practice centers around the gathering and arrangement of ancestral objects to re-contextualize the seemingly mundane into the spectacularly sacred. Part ritual ‘nd part prose performance score this book is written to encourage an interdisciplinary approach to (re)reading, (re)sounding, (re)imagining ‘nd (re)staging memories ‘nd pathologies of his Afro-southern-ancestors…  The work takes us on a lucid journey of  self discovery and cultural reawakening after a young man inherits a mysterious  box of objects following the passing of his grandfather in East Texas. Through recipes, flash fictions, images and  poetry  the audience is invited to reinterpret the sweet complexities of Blackness, the  memories, the objects and rituals discovered on his journey. 

  • IRL AUTHOR TALK: Holy American Burnout! with Sean Enfield - March 21 @ 6:30 PM CST
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    Celebrate with debut author, Sean Enfield on his newest book, Holy American Burnout!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Thursday, March 21 @ 6:30 PM

    Where: Kindred Stories' Reading Gardent (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat and RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our store programming. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Sean Enfield delves into the great American condition: burnout.

    Threading his experiences both as a Texan student and later as a first-year teacher of predominately Muslim students at a Texas middle school, Holy American Burnout! weaves personal essay and cultural critique into the historical fabric of Black and bi-racial identity.

    Enfield intersects examinations of which voices are granted legitimacy by virtue of school curriculum, the complex relationship between basketball and education for Black and brown students, his students' burgeoning political consciousness during the 2016 presidential campaign, and cultural figures ranging from Kendrick Lamar to Hamlet.

    These classroom narratives weave around Enfield's own formative experiences contending with a conflicted bi-racial family lineage, reenacting the Middle Passage as the only Black student in his 7th grade history class, and moshing in both Christian and secular hardcore pits.

    As Enfield wrestles with the physical, mental, and emotional burdens that American society places on educators, students, and all relatively conscious minorities in this country, he reaches for an education that better navigates our burnt-out empire.

     

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

    Sean Enfield is an essayist, poet, gardener, bassist, and educator from Dallas, TX. He also serves as an assistant non-fiction editor at Terrain.org. His debut collection of essays, Holy American Burnout!, is forthcoming from Split/Lip Press in December 2023. You can find his work at seanenfield.com.


    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Miranda Ramírez is a multidisciplinary artist, educator, and writer born and raised in Houston, Texas. She’s the founder and director of Defunkt Magazine & Press, a literary columnist for Public Poetry, a guest editor for Teachers and Writers Collaborative, and a co-organizer of the Houston Poetry and Arts Festival. You may find her work in Atticus Review’s–The AtticCoffin BellCowboy JamboreeCutthroat Journal’s anthology Puro Chicanx Writers of the 21st Century, and Ripples in Space. She is drafting her first novel as an MFA candidate at Sam Houston State University.
  • IRL Author Talk: I Finally Bought Some Jordans with Michael Arceneaux - March 19 @ 7PM
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    Let's celebrate I Finally Bought Some Jordans with Michael Arceneaux, one of our favorite Houston authors! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, March 19 @ 7 PM

    Where: Hogan Brown Gallery (2310 Elgin Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP to reserve your seat or RSVP WITH Book to get a signed copy of I Finally Bought Some Jordans and support our programming. No refunds. 

    Note: There will be books on site. Copies of I Finally Bought Some Jordans bought from other retailers will not be allowed in the venue. If you would like an copy early, please purchase here

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    In his books I Can't Date Jesus and I Don't Want to Die Poor, Michael Arceneaux established himself as one of the most beloved and entertaining writers of his generation, touching upon such hot-button topics as race, class, sexuality, labor, debt, and, of course, paying homage to the power and wisdom of Beyoncé. In this collection, Arceneaux takes stock of how far he has traveled—and how much ground he still has to cover in this patriarchal, heteronormative society. He explores the opportunities afforded to Black creatives but also the doors that remain shut or ever-so-slightly ajar; the confounding challenges of dating in a time when social media has made everything both more accessible and more unreliable; and the allure of returning home while still pushing yourself to seek opportunity elsewhere.

    I Finally Bought Some Jordans is both a corrective to, and a balm for, these troubling times, revealing a sharply funny and keen-eyed storyteller working at the height of his craft.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Michael Arceneaux is the New York Times-bestselling author of I Can’t Date Jesus, I Don’t Want To Die Poor, and his latest, I Finally Bought Some Jordans

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Josie Pickens is a womanist and abolitionist professor, organizer, writer and thought leader. In addition to speaking and writing about topics that focus on the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality, Josie is also the program director for upEND Movement, which is an organization committed to abolishing the the child welfare system. Connect with Josie and follow her musings on Twitter and Instagram at @jonubian. 

  • IRL Author Talk: This Could Be Us with Kennedy Ryan - March 10 @ 2PM
    Sold out

    Celebrate Kennedy Ryan's new book, This Could Be Us!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Sunday, March 10 at 2 PM

    Where: Eldorado Ballroom (2310 Elgin Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: Purchase your ticket here! Each ticket comes with a copy of This Could Be Us. No refunds.

    ABOUT THE BOOK 

    Soledad Barnes has her life all planned out. Because, of course, she does. She plans everything. She designs everything. She fixes everything. She’s a domestic goddess who's never met a party she couldn't host or a charge she couldn't lead. The one with all the answers and the perfect vinaigrette for that summer salad. But none of her varied talents can save her when catastrophe strikes, and the life she built with the man who was supposed to be her forever, goes poof in a cloud of betrayal and disillusion.
     
    But there is no time to pout or sulk, or even grieve the life she lost. She's too busy keeping a roof over her daughters' heads and food on the table. And in the process of saving them all, Soledad rediscovers herself. From the ashes of a life burned to the ground, something bold and new can rise.
     
    But then an unlikely man enters the picture—the forbidden one, the one she shouldn't want but can't seem to resist. She's lost it all before and refuses to repeat her mistakes. Can she trust him? Can she trust herself?
     
    After all she's lost . . .and found . . .can she be brave enough to make room for what could be?

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

    USA Today bestselling author and Audie Award winner, Kennedy Ryan writes for women from all walks of life, empowering them and placing them firmly at the center of each story and in charge of their own destinies. Kennedy and her writings have been featured in USA Today, NPR, Entertainment Weekly, Glamour, Cosmo, TIME, and many others. The co-founder of LIFT 4 Autism, an annual charitable book auction, she has a passion for raising Autism awareness. She is a wife to her "lifetime lover" and mother to an extraordinary son.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Wale Okerayi is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor working with folks in New York and Texas. She has a double masters degree in mental health counseling from Teachers College Columbia University. After practicing in New York for a few years, Wale moved back to her hometown Houston and started her own therapy practice in 2020. Wale currently works with individuals and couples, writers and creative folks on a weekly basis.

    As an avid reader and Kindred Stories aficionado, Wale has moderated various author talks featuring: Lyvonne Briggs, Sochil Washington, Tyriek White, Adorah Nworah, Dr. Joy, and Nicole Walters. 

  • IRL Author Talk: The Kiss Countdown with Etta Easton - April 9 @ 7PM
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    Celebrate the release of The Kiss Countdown with Etta Easton!

    Event DEETS

    When: Tuesday, April 9 @ 7PM CST

    Where: Kindred Stories' Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP to reserve your seat and RSVP WITH BOOK to grab your copy and support our programming. 

    About the Book 

    A struggling event planner and a sinfully hot astronaut must decide if their fake relationship is worth a shot at happily-ever-after, in this starry debut.

    Risk-averse event planner Amerie Price is jobless, newly single, and about to lose her apartment. With no choice but to gamble on her shaky start-up, the last thing she needed was to run into her smug ex and his new, less complicated girlfriend at Amerie's favorite coffee shop. Panicked, she pretends to be dating the annoyingly sexy man she met by spilling Americano all over his abs. He plays along—for a price.

    Half the single men in Houston claim to be astronauts, but Vincent Rogers turns out to be the real deal. What started as a one-off lie morphs into a plan: for the three months leading up to his mission, Amerie will play Vincent's doting partner in front of his loving but overly invested family. In exchange, she gets a rent-free room in his house and can put every penny toward her struggling business.

    What Amerie doesn't plan for is Vincent's gravitational pull. While her mind tells her a future with this astronaut is too unpredictable, her heart says he's exactly what she needs. As their time together counts down, Amerie must decide if she'll settle for the safe life—or shoot for the stars.

    About the Author

    Etta Easton is a certified hopeless romantic who now writes contemporary romance. Her stories are full of humor, relatable heroines, swoon-worthy heroes, and Black joy. She lives in Central Texas with her husband and two young kids.

    About the Conversation Partner

    Naina Kumar is a lawyer by day and a reader and writer of romance at night. She lives in Texas, close to her family whose antics provide endless inspiration. When she’s not writing, she enjoys taking her rowdy rescue dog on walks, rewatching Gilmore Girls on a loop, and shopping at HEB. Say You’ll Be Mine is her debut novel.

  • IRL Book Signing: Rest is Resisistance with Tricia Hersey - March 9 @ 6:00 PM
    Sold out

    Come have a cocktail and mocktail with Tricia Hersey, Founder of The Nap Ministry and author of Rest is Resistance! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, March 9 @ 6PM - 7:30 PM 

    Where: Kindred Stories (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP to help us prepare for your arrival or RSVP WITH BOOK to purchase your copy of Rest is Resistance.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    What would it be like to live in a well-rested world? Far too many of us have claimed productivity as the cornerstone of success. Brainwashed by capitalism, we subject our bodies and minds to work at an unrealistic, damaging, and machine‑level pace –– feeding into the same engine that enslaved millions into brutal labor for its own relentless benefit.

    In Rest Is Resistance, Tricia Hersey, aka the Nap Bishop, casts an illuminating light on our troubled relationship with rest and how to imagine and dream our way to a future where rest is exalted. Our worth does not reside in how much we produce, especially not for a system that exploits and dehumanizes us. Rest, in its simplest form, becomes an act of resistance and a reclaiming of power because it asserts our most basic humanity. We are enough. The systems cannot have us.


    Rest Is Resistance is rooted in spiritual energy and centered in Black liberation, womanism, somatics, and Afrofuturism. With captivating storytelling and practical advice, all delivered in Hersey’s lyrical voice and informed by her deep experience in theology, activism, and performance art, Rest Is Resistance is a call to action, a battle cry, a field guide, and a manifesto for all of us who are sleep deprived, searching for justice, and longing to be liberated from the oppressive grip of Grind Culture.

    ABOUT THE DECK 

    From Tricia Hersey, the celebrated founder of the Nap Ministry and author of the New York Times bestseller Rest Is Resistance, this deck of 50 powerful rest practices helps you embrace rest as a form of radical communal care and personal liberation.
     

    "This is about more than naps. Rest is anything that allows you to connect your body with your mind."

    The Nap Ministry's Rest Deck is a rousing call to reclaim rest in everyday life. Delivered in a stunning package with gold accents and gorgeous artwork throughout, the deck combines restorative meditations with prescient wisdom from celebrated activist and teaching artist Tricia Hersey, a.k.a. "the Nap Bishop," and founder of the Nap Ministry.

    Readers will discover 50 inspiring cards, each with an empowering affirmation and a simple practice to encourage rest, care, and imagination. Rooted in social justice and imbued with spirituality, these cards offer short, accessible practices designed to uplift anyone suffering from the toxic effects of grind culture.

    CELEBRATED AUTHOR: Tricia Hersey, a.k.a. "the Nap Bishop," is the founder of the Nap Ministry and the bestselling author of Rest is Resistance: A Manifesto. Her work as a social justice activist, artist, and thought leader has been featured by the New York Times, NPR, The Cut, and the Atlantic, among many others. In this deck, she distills her profound and celebrated teachings into 50 accessible practices. 

    TOOL FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE: Brimming with practices to empower personal liberation as a step toward building a healthier, more just world, this deck offers readers a new way to engage with social justice and invites a wide audience to embrace the power of rest as an essential balm for our collective exhaustion. 
     
    BEAUTIFUL TO GIFT AND DISPLAY: This bold, eye-catching package with colorful illustrations and gold accents is a beautiful and meaningful gift for friends, activists, and anyone feeling overwhelmed and exhausted by the demands of grind culture.

    • A powerful new tool for social justice activists
    • Great gift or self-purchase for socially engaged millennials and Gen-Zers
    • For anyone seeking mindful affirmation cards to aid their healing practice
    • Perfect for fans of the Nap Ministry, Rest is Resistance: A Manifesto, Layla Saad, Adrienne Maree Brown, Chani Nicholas, and Alex Elle
    • For readers of Me and White Supremacy, I’m Still Here, and How to Do Nothing

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tricia Hersey is an artist, poet, theologian and community organizer. She is the founder of The Nap Ministry, an organization that examines rest as a form of resistance by curating sacred spaces for the community to rest via Collective Napping Experiences, immersive workshops, performance art installations, and social media. Tricia is a global pioneer and originator of the movement to understand the liberatory power of rest. She is the creator of the Rest is Resistance and Rest as Reparations frameworks. Her research interests include Black liberation theology, womanism, somatics, and cultural trauma. Tricia is a Chicago native and currently lives in South Georgia

  • IRL Author Talk: Sisters with a Side of Greens with Michelle Stimpson - March 9 @ 2 PM CST
    Sold out

    Celebrate Texas author, Michelle Stimpson and her newesr book, Sisters with a Side of Greens

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, March 9 at 2 PM CST

    Where: Kindred Stories' Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve you seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming. No refunds.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    From award-winning author Michelle Stimpson: a Southern story of sisterhood and second chances

    Many years ago, Rose Tillman gave her sister, Marvina Dewberry, forty dollars to register a business where they would piggyback on their mother’s amazing spice mixture to make their fortune in fried chicken and other Southern comfort foods. Marvina used that forty dollars for a different reason and the business never got off the ground. It was just forty dollars, but that decision set the course of their lives. Now Rose has retired from a career at the post office and realizes she wants a second shot at her dreams, but she’ll have to go through her sister to get that chance...

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    MICHELLE STIMPSON has had a distinguished traditional publishing career writing Christian and Inspirational contemporary romance fiction. She has won an Emma Award, two Christian Literary Awards, Best Feature Film at CapCity Black Film Festival and was a finalist for the 2021 Vivian Award. She lives in Dallas, TX.

    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER

    Norma L. Jarrett, is an award-winning, published writer and creative talent who loves to inspire, entertain and encourage others through impactful storytelling.

  • IRL Author Talk: The American Daughters with Maurice Carlos Ruffin - March 5 @ 7PM
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    Celebrate release of The American Daughters, Maurice Carlos Ruffin's new historical fiction novel!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, March 5, 2024 @ 7PM

    Where: Kindred Stories' Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP Only to reserve your seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to purchase your copy and support the author. No refunds.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A gripping historical novel about a spirited  girl who joins a sisterhood working to undermine the Confederates—from the award-winning author of We Cast a Shadow

    Ady, a curious, sharp-witted girl, and her fierce mother, Sanite, are an inseparable duo. Enslaved to a businessman in the French Quarter of New Orleans, the pair spend their days dreaming of a loving future and reminiscing on their family's rebellious and storied history. When mother and daughter are separated, Ady is left hopeless and direction-less, until she stumbles into the Mockingbird Inn and meets Lenore, a free Black woman with whom she becomes fast friends. Lenore invites Ady to join a clandestine society of spies called the Daughters. With the courage instilled in her by Sanite—and help from these strong women—Ady learns how to choose herself. So begins her journey toward liberation and imagin­ing a new future.

    The American Daughters is a novel of hope and triumph that reminds us what is possible when a community bands together to fight for their freedom.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

    Maurice Carlos Ruffin is the author of The Ones Who Don't Say They Love You, longlisted for The Story Prize and a finalist for The Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence, and We Cast a Shadow, which was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award, the PEN/Open Book Award, and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize and longlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize and International Dublin Literary Award. A recipient of an Iowa Review Award in fiction, he has been published in the Virginia Quarterly Review, AGNI, the Kenyon Review, The Massachusetts Review, and Unfathomable City: A New Orleans Atlas. A native of New Orleans, he is a graduate of the University of New Orleans Creative Writing Workshop and a member of the Peauxdunque Writers Alliance.

    ABOUT THE FACILITATOR 

    Sharon Sochil Washington, PhD is a cultural anthropologist, social entrepreneur, and writer. Her debut novel, The Blue Is Where God Lives, was published last year by Abrams Books. She’s also author of The Educational Contract, and creator of White Space, a Substack newsletter that explores the meaning between the words we use. She’s written for The American ScholarHuffington Post, Newsday (New York), Dallas Times Herald, and the Akron Beacon Journal; and she speaks regularly at universities and conferences on issues of education, social justice, economic insecurity, and media influences. 

  • IRL Author Talk: Where is Africa with Anita N. Bateman - March 12 @ 6:30 PM
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    Celebrate the release of Where is Africa with author and curator, Anita N. Bateman!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, March 12, 2024 @ 6:30 PM 

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, Houston, TX, 77004)

    How: RSVP ONLY to reserve your seat or RSVP with Book to support the author and our programming. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A multidisciplinary illustrated reader unpacking imperialist representations of Africa by promoting dialogue, memory and everyday practice, and reimagining cultural institutions and the arts—from museums to academia, from architecture to art

    In 2017, curator and art historian Anita N. Bateman and architect and professor Emanuel Admassu initiated research on the traditional positioning and mispositioning of the arts across the African continent. Where Is Africa has been an extended set of exchanges with contemporary artists, curators, designers and academics who are actively engaged in representing the continent—both within and outside its geographic boundaries. By examining artist collectives, new currents in art history and the rise of contemporary art festivals in and about Africa from the past 10 years, the project unpacks the imperialist foundations of cultural institutions and their anthropological fascination with African objects, people and places.
    The interviews in Where Is Africa examine African and African-diasporic identities and spaces through questions of positionality in relation to specific disciplinary, cultural and political contexts. The texts address Afro-diasporic aesthetic practices and the curatorial, museological and artistic matrices that confront epistemologies of dominance and exclusion. The commissioned essays and images offer concise methodologies that expand or complicate issues addressed by the interviewees.
    Where Is Africa is a conceptual project that accompanies a conceptual place, driven by the desire to dislodge Africa from categorical fixity and the representational logics of nation-states. Africa can never be fully enclosed by the residue of colonial violence or the totalitarian gaze of neoliberalism; instead, it creates infinite malleability, where place and concept are untethered from each other.


    Contributors include: Mikael Awake, Salome Asega, Tau Tavengwa, Anthony Bogues, Jay Simple, Eric Gottesman, Rebecca Corey, Aida Mulkozi, Rakeb Sile, Mesai Haileleul, Mpho Matsipa, Niama Safia Sandy, Adama Delphine Fawundu, Rehema Chachage, Robel Temesgen, Valerie Amani, Meskerem Assegued, Elias Sime, Olalekan Jeyifous, Amanda Williams, Germane Barnes and Mario Gooden.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Dr. Anita N. Bateman (she/her) specializes in modern and contemporary African art and the art of the African diaspora with additional expertise in the history of photography, Black Feminism/Womanism, and the role of social media in activism and liberation work. Bateman earned a doctorate in art history and visual culture and graduate certificate in African and African American Studies from Duke University, a master’s in art history from Duke University, and completed her undergraduate degree in art history, graduating cum laude from Williams College. She has held curatorial positions at the RISD Museum, the Williams College Museum of Art, and the Nasher Museum of Art. Her academic research has been supported by the American Council of Learned Societies, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, and the Social Science Research Council. Bateman was the Fall 2022 ARCAthens Curatorial Fellow and a 2022 Graham Foundation grantee for the forthcoming publication, Where Is Africa (Center for Art, Research, and Alliances), co-edited with Emanuel Admassu. She is currently the Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
    ABOUT THE CONVERSATION PARTNER
    Ashley Hoskins is an inspiration to those who strive for cultural enrichment and knowledge expansion. As a lifelong reader and educator, Ashley finds the most joy in witnessing someone connect with a book. She believes that reading creates an imaginative space for travel and spirituality. She recalls always being a personal librarian for her friends and family members. They would often contact her to borrow books and ask for suggestions. Ashley founded the Houston chapter in 2019 with the blessings of OlaRonke Akinmowo of The Free Black Women’s Library. The Free Black Women’s Library HTX serves as a creative space that amplifies the literary and artistic expression of the Black woman. As the creative director of The Free Black Women’s Library HTX, Ashley curates community events centered around Black women writers and artists. She is currently an artist in residence at the Anderson Center for the Arts, where The Free Black Women’s Library HTX is on exhibition and available for visitors to swap books written by Black women authors.
  • Virtual Author Talk: Convergence Problems & Womb City with Wole Talabi & Tlotlo Tsamaase - February 12 @ 7PM CST
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    Join us in celebrating Wole Talabi and Tlotlo Tsamaase newest books, Convergence Problems and Womb City! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Monday, February 12 at 7PM CST

    Where: Virtual Via Zoom

    How: RSVP to sign up to get the Zoom link. RSVP with Convergence Problems to receive Wole Talabi's newest book along with a signed bookplate and holographic stickers. RSVP with Womb City to puchase your copy of the book Also, check out the RSVP with Bundle to receive both books at a special rate!

    ABOUT THE BOOKS

    CONVERGENCE PROBLEMS is a stunning new collection of stories that investigate the rapidly changing role of technology and belief in our lives as we search for meaning, for knowledge, for justice; constantly converging on our future selves.

    A Publishers Weekly Top Ten Spring 2024 Roundup pick

    In “An Arc of Electric Skin,” a roadside mechanic seeking justice volunteers to undergo a procedure that will increase the electrical conductivity of his skin by orders of magnitude. In “Blowout,” a woman races against time and a previously undocumented geological phenomenon to save her brother on the surface of Mars. In “Ganger,” a young woman trapped in a city run by machines must transfer her consciousness into an artificial body and find a way to give her life
    purpose. In “Debut,” Nairobi-based technical support engineer tries to understand what is happening when an AI art system begins malfunctioning in ways that could change the world.

    The sixteen stories of Convergence Problems, which include work published for the first time in this collection, rare stories, and recently acclaimed work, showcase Talabi at his creative best: playful and profound, exciting and experimental, always interesting.

    Womb City is a genre-bending Africanfuturist horror novel blends The Handmaid’s Tale with Get Out in an adrenaline-packed, cyberpunk body-hopping ghost story exploring motherhood, memory, and a woman’s right to her own body.

    Nelah seems to have it all: fame, wealth, and a long-awaited daughter growing in a government lab. But, trapped in a loveless marriage to a policeman who uses a microchip to monitor her every move, Nelah’s perfect life is precarious. After a drug-fueled evening culminates in an eerie car accident, Nelah commits a desperate crime and buries the body, daring to hope that she can keep one last secret.

    The truth claws its way into Nelah’s life from the grave. 

    As the ghost of her victim viciously hunts down the people Nelah holds dear, she is thrust into a race against the clock: in order to save any of her remaining loved ones, Nelah must unravel the political conspiracy her victim was on the verge of exposing—or risk losing everyone. 

    Set in a cruel futuristic surveillance state where bodies are a government-issued resource, this harrowing story is a twisty, nail-biting commentary on power, monstrosity, and bodily autonomy. In sickeningly evocative prose, Womb City interrogates how patriarchy pits women against each other as unwitting collaborators in their own oppression. In this devastatingly timely debut novel, acclaimed short fiction writer Tlotlo Tsamaase brings a searing intelligence and Botswana’s cultural sensibility to the question: just how far must a woman go to bring the whole system crashing down?

    ABOUT THE AUTHORS

    WOLE TALABI is an engineer, writer, and editor from Nigeria. He is the author of the novel SHIGIDI AND THE BRASS HEAD OF OBALUFON (DAW books/Gollancz, 2023). His short fiction has appeared in places like Asimov’s Science Fiction, Lightspeed Magazine, Tor.com and is collected in the books CONVERGENCE PROBLEMS (DAW books, 2024) and INCOMPLETE SOLUTIONS (Luna Press, 2019). He has been a finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, and Locus awards, as well as the Caine Prize for African Writing and he has won the Nommo award for African speculative fiction and the Sidewise award for Alternate History. He has edited five anthologies including the acclaimed AFRICANFUTURISM: AN ANTHOLOGY (Brittlepaper, 2020) and MOTHERSOUND: THE SAUÚTIVERSE ANTHOLOGY (Android Press, 2023). He likes scuba diving, elegant equations, and oddly shaped things. He currently lives and works in Australia. Find him at wtalabi.wordpress.com and at @wtalabi on Twitter, Instagram, Bluesky and Tiktok.

    Tlotlo Tsamaase (xe/xem/xer or she/her/hers) is a Motswana writer. Xer novella, The Silence of Wilting Skin, is a Lambda Literary Award finalist, and was the first Motswana nominee for the Rhysling Award. Tlotlo received support from the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, and xer story “Behind Our Irises” jointly won the Nommo Award. Xer short fiction has appeared in multiple best-of anthologies, Africa RisenNew Suns 2, Chiral Mad 5, and other venues. Womb City is Tlotlo’s debut novel.

  • IRL Poetry Reading: Tender Headed with Olatunde Osinaike - March 2 @6PM
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    Join us for a poetry reading with Olatunde & friends, Ayokunle Falomo and Joshua Burton!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, March 2 @ 6PM

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP Only to reserve seats or RSVP WITH BOOK to reserve your copy of the book and our programming. No refunds.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    The irony of transformation often is that we mistake it to have occurred long before it does. Tender Headed takes its time in asserting the realization that growth remains ever ahead of you. Examining the themes of Black identity, accountability, and narration, we encounter a series of revealing snapshots into the role language plays in chiseling possibility and its rigid command of depiction. Olatunde Osinaike's startling debut sorts through the many-minded masks behind Black masculinity. At its center lies an inquiry about the puzzling nature of relationships, how ceaseless wonder can be in its challenge of a truth. In the name of music and self-identity, the speaker weaves their way through fault and how it amends Black life in America.

    This is demonstrated best in how the demanding, yet vulnerable tone for the collection is set in "Men Like Me," its restless opening poem. Here, we find the speaker reciting a chronicle of generational neglect from men that became him also. Earnest and sharp, there is a beauty in seeing a poet not shy away from both the melancholy and resolve of rescripting their path while cherishing their steps and missteps along the way. This collection is a panel aching of fathers, sons, uncles, grandfathers, all of whom would do well to join in and confront shared privileges that are typically curtailed or altogether avoided in conversation. Tender Headed entrusts the heart to be a compass, insisting on a journey unto itself and a melodic detour toward tenderness precise with its own footing.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Originally from the West Side of Chicago, Olatunde Osinaike is a Nigerian-American poet, essayist, and software developer. He is the author of Tender Headed (Akashic Books, 2023), selected by Camille Rankine as winner of the 2022 National Poetry Series. Tender Headed has received recognition by several outlets including EBONY, The Grio, The Millions, Publishers Weekly, The Root, Chicago Review of Books, and elsewhere. His work has received fellowships and support from Poets & Writers, Hurston/Wright Foundation, Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, and the Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice at Rutgers University.

  • IRL Author Talk: A Love Song for Ricki Wilde with Tia Williams - February 20 @7 PM
    Sold out

    Join us to celebrate Tia Williams' newest release, A Love Song for Ricki Wilde!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Tuesday, February 20 @7PM

    Where: STAGES (800 Rosine Street, HTX, 77019)

    How: Grab your tickets! Each ticket will come with a signed copy of A Love Song for Ricki Wilde. No refunds. 

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    In this enchanting love story from the New York Times bestselling author of Seven Days in June, a free-spirited florist and an enigmatic musician are irreversibly linked through the history, art, and magic of Harlem.

    Leap years are a strange, enchanted time. And for some, even a single February can be life-changing.

    Ricki Wilde has many talents, but being a Wilde isn’t one of them. As the impulsive, artistic daughter of a powerful Atlanta dynasty, she’s the opposite of her famous socialite sisters. Where they’re long-stemmed roses, she’s a dandelion: an adorable bloom that’s actually a weed, born to float wherever the wind blows. In her bones, Ricki knows that somewhere, a different, more exciting life awaits her.

    When regal nonagenarian, Ms. Della, invites her to rent the bottom floor of her Harlem brownstone, Ricki jumps at the chance for a fresh beginning. She leaves behind her family, wealth, and chaotic romantic decisions to realize her dream of opening a flower shop. And just beneath the surface of her new neighborhood, the music, stories and dazzling drama of the Harlem Renaissance still simmers.

    One evening in February as the heady, curiously off-season scent of night-blooming jasmine fills the air, Ricki encounters a handsome, deeply mysterious stranger who knocks her world off balance in the most unexpected way.  

    Set against the backdrop of modern Harlem and Renaissance glamour, A Love Song for Ricki Wilde is a swoon-worthy love story of two passionate artists drawn to the magic, romance, and opportunity of New York, and whose lives are uniquely and irreversibly linked. 

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tia Williams had a fifteen-year career as a beauty editor for magazines including ElleGlamourLuckyTeen People, and Essence. In 2004, she pioneered the beauty-blog industry with her award-winning site, Shake Your Beauty. She wrote the bestselling debut novel The Accidental Diva and penned two young adult novels, It Chicks and Sixteen Candles. Her award-winning novel The Perfect Find is a Netflix movie starring Gabrielle Union. Her latest novel is New York Times bestseller and Reese Witherspoon Bookclub pick, Seven Days in June, published by Grand Central.
     
    Tia currently lives with her daughter and her husband in Brooklyn
  • IRL Book Signing: Out of Body with Nia Davenport - February 10 @ 2PM CST
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    Celebrate Nia Davenport's young adult debut, Out of Body

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, February 10 @ 2 PM CST

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: Only book purchased from Kindred Stories will be eligible for signing line.

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A high-stakes, propulsive young adult thriller with a body-swap twist thoughtfully explores themes of friendship and identity, perfect for fans of Tiffany D. Jackson.

    Seventeen-year-old Megan Allen has been jumping from friend group to friend group in her high school, trying on identities like outfits. Nothing ever seems to fit—until she meets LC, the adventurous, charismatic girl who appears at her favorite coffee shop one day like magic. Finally, Megan feels like she’s becoming the person she’s meant to be: someone like LC.

    On the night of their friendiversary, what was supposed to be a bonding experience ends in a waking nightmare. Suddenly, Megan is no longer herself. Too late, she realizes that LC has secrets—dangerous ones. Betrayed by her best friend, thrust into another girl’s life, and targeted by LC’s enemies, she must claim what makes Megan Megan to get her life back . . . or die trying.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    NIA DAVENPORT is the author of the sci-fi fantasy Blood Gift duology. A lover of both science and literature, Nia has taught English and biology to a diverse public school population in Texas. She grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, and now lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband and kids. Find out more at nedavenport.com

  • IRL Author Talk: Between Two Brothers with Crystal Allen - January 28 @3PM
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    Join us to celebrate the release of Between Two Brothers! 

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Sunday, January 28 @3PM

    Where: Project Row Houses Community Gallery (2521 Holman Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP to reserve your seat! RSVP WITH BOOK to reserve your copy. We are also doing a donation drive that you can learn more about here

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    A powerful and uplifting story about thirteen-year-old Isaiah, who has always worshiped his older brother, Seth, until a devastating accident forces him to step up and find a way to support his brother the way Seth has always supported him—from the acclaimed author of How Lamar's Bad Prank Won a Bubba-Sized Trophy and the Magnificent Mya Tibbs series.

    Inspired by real events, Between Two Brothers is a big-hearted story about forgiveness and the power of a family’s unconditional love, perfect for readers who loved Fish in a Tree and Out of My Mind.

    Isaiah "Ice" Abernathy has always worshiped his older brother, Seth. For years they’ve been not just brothers but best friends—and as Seth starts his senior year, Ice is eager to spend as much time with his brother as he can, making memories before Seth goes to college.

    But when Seth announces he’s leaving much earlier than expected, and then he misses an important event—one he'd promised to attend—it causes a major fight.

    Filled with regret, Ice plans to apologize to Seth later the next day, but later never comes, as he finds out Seth was in an accident—one that leaves him in the hospital. And the doctors say he may never recover.

    Racked by fear and guilt, Ice chooses to step up, defy the experts, and help Seth recover in a way only he can—by trusting in their bond and the undying love between two brothers.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Cystal Allen is the author of the middle grade novels How Lamar's Bad Prank Won a Bubba-Sized TrophyThe Laura Line, and the three books in The Magnificent Mya Tibbs series. Her many accolades include the Sid Fleischman Humor Award for The Magnificent Mya Tibbs: The Wall of Fame Game and induction to the Texas Institute of Letters. Crystal is also a committee member of The Brown Bookshelf, the co-director of Kindling Words East, and a faculty member of Highlights for Children. She lives in Texas with her husband, Reggie, and two sons, Phillip and Joshua. Visit her online at www.crystalallenbooks.com

  • IRL Author Talk: Barracoon: Adapted for Young Readers with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi - February 3 @ 1 PM CST
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    Join us along with ACLU Texas and the Houston Public Library in celebrating Barracoon: Adapted for Young Readers: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo"!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, February 3 at 1 PM CST

    Where: 500 McKinney Street, HTX, 77002

    How: To get your free ticket, please use the following link on the Houston Public Library website. If you would like to donate to support our programming, check out by adding this product to your cart!

    ABOUT THE BOOK 

    In the first middle grade offering from Zora Neale Hurston and Ibram X. Kendi, young readers are introduced to the remarkable and true-life story of Cudjo Lewis, one of the last survivors of the Atlantic human trade, in an adaptation of the internationally bestselling and critically acclaimed Barracoon.

    This is the life story of Cudjo Lewis, as told by himself.

    Of the millions of men, women, and children transported from Africa to America to be enslaved, 86-year-old Cudjo Lewis was then the only person alive to tell the story of his capture and bondage—fifty years after the Atlantic human trade was outlawed in the United States. Cudjo shared his firsthand account with legendary folklorist, anthropologist, and writer Zora Neale Hurston.

    Hurston spent months talking with Cudjo about the details of his life. Cudjo recounted memories from his childhood in Africa, the horrors of the raid of his village, being captured and held in a barracoon for sale by human traders, and the years he spent in slavery until the end of the Civil War.

    Adapted with care and delivered with age-appropriate historical context by award-winning historian Ibram X. Kendi, Cudjo’s incredible story is now available for young readers and emerging scholars. With powerful illustrations by Jazzmen Lee-Johnson, this poignant work is an invaluable contribution to our shared history and culture.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)

    Ibram X. Kendi is a National Book Award–winning and #1 New York Times bestselling author. His books include Antiracist Baby; Goodnight Racism; How to Be an Antiracist; and How to Raise an Antiracist. Kendi is the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Boston University and the director of the BU Center for Antiracist Research. In 2020, Time magazine named Kendi one of the 100 most influential people in the world. He has also been awarded a 2021 MacArthur Fellowship.

    Zora Neale Hurston was a novelist, folklorist, and anthropologist. She wrote four novels (Jonah’s Gourd Vine, 1934; Their Eyes Were Watching God, 1937; Moses, Man of the Mountains, 1939; and Seraph on the Suwanee, 1948); two books of folklore (Mules and Men, 1935, and Every Tongue Got to Confess, 2001); a work of anthropological research, (Tell My Horse, 1938); an autobiography (Dust Tracks on a Road, 1942); an international bestselling nonfiction work (Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo,” 2018); and over fifty short stories, essays, and plays. She attended Howard University, Barnard College, and Columbia University and was a graduate of Barnard College in 1928. She was born on January 7, 1891, in Notasulga, Alabama, and grew up in Eatonville, Florida.

  • IRL Author Signing: The Queer Girl is Going to Be Okay with Dale Walls - December 23 @ 1PM CST
    $19.99

    Pull up on us to meet Dale Walls and get a signed copy of The Queer Girl is Going to Be Okay!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Saturday, December 23 at 1 PM

    Where: Kindred Stories (2304 Stuart Street, HTX, 77004)

    How: RSVP to reserve your copy of the book!

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    Texas native, Dale Walls' debut novel checks all the Gen Z marks - tenderness, tropes, and timeliness - and that makes sense because they wrote the first version while attending High School in Houston

    Queer Love. Something Dawn wants, desperately, but does not have. But maybe, if she can capture it, film it, interview the people who have it, queer love will be hers someday. Or, at least, she'll have made a documentary about it. A documentary that, hopefully, will win Dawn a scholarship to film school. Many obstacles stand in the way of completing her film, but her best friends Edie and Georgia are there to help her reach her goal, no matter what it takes. A touching and joyous story of queer friendship and girlhood set in the vibrant city of Houston, THE QUEER GIRL IS GOING TO BE OKAY will make you laugh, make you cry, and make you believe that eventually, everything will be okay.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Dale Walls is the author of the forthcoming novel The Queer Girl Is Going to Be Okay. They are currently a graduate student at Stanford University studying art history. When not writing, they can be found creating educational videos about POC artists on their YouTube channel, Art in Color.

  • IRL Author Talk: How to Live Free in a Dangerous World with Shayla Lawson: February 9 @ 7PM
    from $0.00

    Celebrate How to Live Free in a Dangerous World: A Decolonial Memoir with journalist, poet, author, Shayla Lawson!

    EVENT DEETS

    When: Friday, February 9 at 7PM

    Where: Kindred Stories Reading Garden 

    How: RSVP ONLY to save you seat or RSVP WITH BOOK to support the author and our programming

    ABOUT THE BOOK

    In their new book, Shayla Lawson reveals how traveling can itself be a political act, when it can be a dangerous world to be Black, femme, nonbinary, and disabled. With their signature prose, at turns muscular and luminous, Lawson explores layered meanings within love, time, and the self.

    Through encounters with a gorgeous gondolier in Venice, an ex-husband in The Netherlands, and a lost love on New Year’s Eve in Mexico City, Lawson’s travels bring unexpected wisdom about life in and out of love. They learn the strength of friendships, and the dangers of beauty during a near escape in Egypt. They examine Blackness in post dictatorship Zimbabwe, then take us on a secretive tour of Black freedom movements in Portugal.

    Through a deeply insightful journey, Lawson leads readers from a castle in France, to a hula hoop competition in Jamaica, to a traditional theater in Tokyo, to a Prince concert in Minnesota, and finally to find liberation on a beach in Bermuda, exploring each location—and their deepest emotions—to the fullest. In the end, they discover how trials of marriage, grief, and missed connections, can lead to self transformation and unimagined new freedoms.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Shayla Lawson (they/them) is the author of This is Major, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics’ Circle and the LAMBDA Literary Award, and two poetry collections. They have written for New York Magazine, Salon, ESPN, and Paper, and have earned fellowships from Yaddo and the MacDowell Artist Colony. They live in Lexington, Kentucky.

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