100 Best African American Poems Edited By Nikki Giovanni.

The Diverse Reader 100 Best African American Poems Edited By Nikki Giovanni Book Review

Title: 100 Best African Americans Poems

Author: Edited: Nikki Giovanni

Genre: Poetry

Published: November 10, 2010

Publisher: Sourcebooks MediaFusion

Total Pages: 256 pages

Topics Include: Growth, Life, Love, Loss, Black Experiences.

Amazon Synopsis: Award-winning poet and writer Nikki Giovanni takes on the impossible task of selecting the 100 best African American works from classic and contemporary poets. Out of necessity, Giovanni admits she cheats a little, selecting a larger, less round number.


I have to admit that when I saw this book on the library online platform I did not know what to expect. I knew anything including Nikki Giovanni would be an experience but this poetry had a wide range of poets. This book also included an audio book disc in the back for readers to have a chance to listen to the words of these poems from famous poets like Nikki Giovanni, Rube Dee, and more. Instead of reading the poetry, I decided to listen to the poems and read along with the speakers which gave me an unique experience.


My favorite poem: No Images By Waring Cuney

She does not know
her beauty,
she thinks her brown body
has no glory.

If she could dance
naked
under palm trees
and see her image in the river,
she would know.

But there are no palm trees
on the street,
and dish water gives back
no images.


My thoughts:

One hundred unique poems were given in this poetry book and each poem was telling a story or an experience. I was able to not only read the poems but hear a speaker say the poems aloud. The speakers gave more life to the poetry through their voices and animated tone. I have never listened to an audiobook before and this was a great experience based on the speakers used to tell the poetry. The poetry that Nikki Giovanni used were African American poems and had a wide range of poets used. Poets such as Tupac, Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, Maya Angelou and more were used in this book. I think the poetry book gives the audience a chance to understand different experiences, topics and ideas. Topics such as the black experience, love, life pains, and family were a constant poem theme. Even if some of the topics used did not relate to a reader’s life — I guarantee there is at least one poem that will make an impact.

I believe that the audio portion of the poetry book made the poetry awaken. The voices of the speakers were animated, alive and inviting. The speakers wanted the reader to hear the poetry different than they would in their minds. I was able to read along and understand the poetry in a different manner when I heard the speakers say the poem with emotion. I related to majority of the poetry but overall the poetry book made me want to read more of the poets used in this collection. There were poets that I was not familiar with but Giovanni creating this collection gave me more poets to look for in the black poet community. This book made me want to get more into audiobooks also because listening to speakers can change how a book can impact you. Overall, this poetry book is a gem that needs to be on your bookshelf.

You can find this book at: https://amzn.to/2In1oJ2


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