Booktube is a place that all book lovers find themselves on at some point or another. It is where we go to find book recommendations and grow our astronomically long TBR list. We find book reviews and watch others gush over our favorites and tear apart our least favorites, and we find others who love and appreciate books as much as we do. However, if you ever find yourself on booktube, you might notice the most popular booktubers are not as diverse as they could be. Thankfully, it is Black History Month which is the perfect time to diversify the booktubers you are currently watching and add some black names to your list. So, here are some of the best Black booktubers to subscribe to right now.
Joel, also known as fictional fates, is one of my favorite booktubers because of his bright personality that shines in all of his videos. He is a University student in the UK who also writes, which makes him feel very relatable to me. He is also a part of the LGBT+ community which means yay, more representation for the black queer community. I love seeing him not afraid to be himself and speak up on what matters to him. The way he speaks about books makes me want to read every single title he has ever mentioned because he is so passionate in his reviews and wrap-ups. He, also like us here at Bookstr, has OPINIONS on the new Winx Club series and it is very fun to see him react to the show. So, if you are looking for a booktuber who will always keep you entertained and will always recommend your new favorite read, you should definitely check out Joel’s channel!
Books by Leynes is a booktuber who first caught my attention with her video “Booktube Needs to do Better | Black Lives Matter” back in June during the height of the Black Lives Movement, after the incidents with Breonna Taylor and George Floyd. During that time I, and I am sure many other black people, noticed not only YouTubers but booktubers as well not speaking up for the cause. One great tweet from booktuber Joanna perfectly explained the situation by saying, “some of the og booktubers started and ended their activism with rating The Hate U Give 5 stars and it shows.” In her video, Leynes has no issue calling out booktubers for choosing not to speak up. Her passion and honesty in the video about an issue I was also passionate about was so refreshing to see. I have been hooked ever since.
Leynes, a black booktuber from Germany, is not like every other booktuber. On her channel, you will find wrap-ups but you will also find in-depth analytical book essays and more diverse reads that other booktubers are not talking about. Additionally, being black, you will find her sharing plenty of books by black authors and about black people all year round not just when it is popular like in February. She also has really insightful discussions on meaningful topics like feminism, being black in Germany, continuously evaluating and calling out booktube, political figures, and so much more. You will not only discover so many new authors and books on her channel but you will also really learn something which I always love when deciding on who to support on social media. Her Goodreads even says, ” I’m here to learn and broaden my horizon. I’m also focusing on works of Black writers.” and that is evident on her channel.
3. Myonna Reads
One of my favorite things about Myonna Reads is her aesthetic, which immediately caught my eye. Myonna is a 22-year-old booktuber from Michigan touching the lives of thousands with her cute bookshelf, engaging wrap-ups, and funny reading vlogs. She has such a fun personality that really shines on her channel and she makes you feel like you are close friends. She is also the queen of reading and stunts on all of us with the amount she reads. If you are looking for a booktuber to add some diversity to your booktube world and just a booktuber who you can feel a real connection to, she is perfect. She is a bright light in the booktube community with a different vibe that I feel like you don’t get from anybody else.
To Be Black and Loved is a win for not only black booktubers but also the LGBT+ community. If his booktube name isn’t proof enough that you should be following him then his mission to make his channel a safe place for queer black people should. Jonathan, the man behind To Be Black and Loved, majorly features books that follow black and queer stories on his booktube, so if you need recommendations to look for more diverse stories, his channel is the perfect place to go. He is so eloquently spoken that his reviews and wrap-ups give amazing insight into the books he speaks about. He also has a website and if you are into good aesthetics as much as I am you will love it. However, being aesthetically pleasing is not the only thing his website has going for it as it features booklists, engagingly written book-reviews, and just an overall inspiring space.
The “about” section on his website is the perfect introduction to him where he says:
I drink a lot of coffee and probably don’t sleep as much as I could. And on those insomniatic nights I lay awake imaginining of a world where black LGBT folk can see themselves everywhere, and don’t have to settle for the weak representation the media offers us.
Representation is something that is very important to me that I’ve been seeking out and fighting for for years. If it is also important to you, Jonathan is definitely a booktuber you should check out!
5. Rachel Rae’
Rachel Rae’ is the booktuber you go to for all things bookish! From wrap-ups to hauls to reviews, she has you covered. She has also talked about some of my favorite novels so she is definitely one of my go-to’s when I need to find something new to read. Even though she has not uploaded in a while, I still recommend watching her content as she can introduce you to some good reads. Additionally, my favorite thing about her, as with most booktubers on this list, is she will introduce you to diverse reads by black authors that you may not have otherwise known about. She does an excellent job showcasing different types of black stories on her channel while also keeping you up to date with popular reads. Rachel is a well-spoken black woman, not to say we all aren’t, but I really enjoy and appreciate the intellect with which she speaks of books on her channel and I would encourage everyone who loves all things bookish to check her out!
Featured image via teen vogue