100 books like He Won't Go

By Stacey Covington-Lee,

Here are 100 books that He Won't Go fans have personally recommended if you like He Won't Go. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Lady of the Church

Lakisha Johnson Author Of Almost Destroyed

From my list on African American Christian fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve had a love for Christianity since I was a child. However, it wouldn’t be until years later that the love for it would turn into a passion for penning Christian Fiction. I began my journey in ministry in 2014 and two years later, I released the first novel. Since then, God has allowed me to write on many different topics I’ve now recognized were needed. I want others to see Christian Fiction doesn’t have to be boring or dry, but can be entertaining, inspirational, and full of life. This is why I’ve chosen these books as recommendations and I hope the readers will enjoy them even more than I have.

Lakisha's book list on African American Christian fiction

Lakisha Johnson Why did Lakisha love this book?

Lady of the Church is a realistic depiction of a lady who feels as though she’s losing her identity. To many, they only cared about “First Lady,” the title, and not Sabrina, the person. This book made me laugh, sad, happy, and mad at the same time. I even found myself questioning whether or not I was guilty of judging a person based on their stature and not character. Overall, I enjoyed this book and would recommend it.

By Khara Campbell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lady of the Church as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Sabrina Dean did not sign up for her role as First Lady of Everlasting Love Ministry, but that’s what happened when she married a preacher’s kid. The role requires far more than she bargained for. There is the pressure of perfection. Isolation from not being treated like a “regular” sister in Christ and the judgment. Oh, the judgmental remarks she endures. It also doesn’t help that things at home aren’t as perfect as people think. Sabrina puts on a brave face, one of many, but how much more pressure can she take?


Book cover of Don't Push Me

Lakisha Johnson Author Of Almost Destroyed

From my list on African American Christian fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve had a love for Christianity since I was a child. However, it wouldn’t be until years later that the love for it would turn into a passion for penning Christian Fiction. I began my journey in ministry in 2014 and two years later, I released the first novel. Since then, God has allowed me to write on many different topics I’ve now recognized were needed. I want others to see Christian Fiction doesn’t have to be boring or dry, but can be entertaining, inspirational, and full of life. This is why I’ve chosen these books as recommendations and I hope the readers will enjoy them even more than I have.

Lakisha's book list on African American Christian fiction

Lakisha Johnson Why did Lakisha love this book?

D.A. Bourne weaves a story of Christian Fiction and overcoming racism during a time it’s at an all-time high. We all know racism is a touchy subject a lot of people don’t like to talk about, but it’s a sad reality many face every day. This story surrounds autoworkers and their families who find themselves faced with racial conflict that tests their faith, patience, ability to forgive, and all the things they’ve always believed in. 

By D.A. Bourne,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Don't Push Me as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

How do you handle being harassed because of your skin color?How do you deal with the false stereotypes at your new workplace?How can you comfort your spouse when she's a victim of hate?How much longer can you be pushed before you take action?The story begins about a group of autoworkers and their families as they deal with racial conflict in and out of the assembly plant. Their faith and patience will be tested as they approach an unpredictable season.


Book cover of Every Voice Ain't From God

Lakisha Johnson Author Of Almost Destroyed

From my list on African American Christian fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve had a love for Christianity since I was a child. However, it wouldn’t be until years later that the love for it would turn into a passion for penning Christian Fiction. I began my journey in ministry in 2014 and two years later, I released the first novel. Since then, God has allowed me to write on many different topics I’ve now recognized were needed. I want others to see Christian Fiction doesn’t have to be boring or dry, but can be entertaining, inspirational, and full of life. This is why I’ve chosen these books as recommendations and I hope the readers will enjoy them even more than I have.

Lakisha's book list on African American Christian fiction

Lakisha Johnson Why did Lakisha love this book?

If you’re looking for Christian Fiction with jaw-dropping suspense, twists, turns, and drama, this is the book. The characters are so defined that I renamed Zakari as Zacrazi because he was just that. He was the type who knew he was doing wrong and would pray while doing it. This book will have you trying to figure out the ending beforehand.

By Tanisha Stewart, Carrie Bledsoe (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Every Voice Ain't From God as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A psychological thriller with jaw-dropping twists and turns, and characters whose antics will leave you speechless… A story about love gone right, then wrong.

Zakari has known Nicole was the one since high school. He prays about whether their relationship is meant to be and receives confirmation one night during a church service. Zakari and Nicole are getting married!

Until she breaks up with him the next day.

Zakari plunges into a pit of despair, then Nicole reaches out and tells him they can be friends, maybe rekindle their relationship after college? Elated, Zakari agrees and bides his time until…


Book cover of Living a Blessed Lie

Lakisha Johnson Author Of Almost Destroyed

From my list on African American Christian fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve had a love for Christianity since I was a child. However, it wouldn’t be until years later that the love for it would turn into a passion for penning Christian Fiction. I began my journey in ministry in 2014 and two years later, I released the first novel. Since then, God has allowed me to write on many different topics I’ve now recognized were needed. I want others to see Christian Fiction doesn’t have to be boring or dry, but can be entertaining, inspirational, and full of life. This is why I’ve chosen these books as recommendations and I hope the readers will enjoy them even more than I have.

Lakisha's book list on African American Christian fiction

Lakisha Johnson Why did Lakisha love this book?

If you like series, drama, and lies then you’ve come to the right place. Living a Blessed Lie details the story of Tiffany and her three best friends who all have gotten good at wearing fake smiles while one of them is carrying a secret that’s threatening to tear their life and friendships apart. 

By She Nell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Living a Blessed Lie as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

If it shimmers, is it gold? Life for Tiffany’s three best friends seems to be golden. Ebony has a loving husband and a beautiful child. Jennifer has a precious newborn and is married to a wonderful minister. Tasha is single and satisfied. If you look at her friends or their social media posts, you will agree they are living a blessed life. However, Tiffany will learn that one of her friends is living a blessed lie.


Book cover of Can I Get A Witness? Reading Revelation Through African American Culture

Roland England Author Of Worthy Is the Lamb: The Book of Revelation as a Drama

From my list on Christian on Revelation for a general audience.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a huge fan of Revelation which tops my list of favorite books of the Bible. I recently retired after 47 years as a pastor in the United Church of Christ. How many times have I read Revelation and preached on this marvelous book? How many times have I read and heard interpretations, and misinterpretations? The answer, a lot! I finally decided I had to write my own book. I study Revelation like digging in a field for buried treasure. The more digging, the more riches I find! I am a graduate of Eastern Mennonite University where I majored in Bible, and a graduate of Union Presbyterian Seminary, Richmond, VA., with a Master of Divinity.

Roland's book list on Christian on Revelation for a general audience

Roland England Why did Roland love this book?

I was intrigued by Blount's comparison between the African American experience and the situation of the first-century church. I gained better understanding of Revelation’s purpose, which I state in my book: “To enable and empower the church’s resistance.” I want this book sung and accompanied by a marching band. I want to hear, “we shall overcome” and “nothing will turn us around.” I want to clap my hands and add my voice in witness to the good news of Jesus! That’s what this book does for me!

By Brian K. Blount,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Can I Get A Witness? Reading Revelation Through African American Culture as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this accessible and provocative study, Brian Blount reads the book of Revelation through the lens of African American culture, drawing correspondences between Revelation's context and the long-standing suffering of African Americans. Applying the African American social, political, and religious experience as an interpretive cipher for the book's complicated imagery, he contends that Revelation is essentially a story of suffering and struggle amid oppressive assimilation. He examines the language of "martyr" and the image of the lamb, and shows that the thread of resistance to oppressive power that runs through John's hymns resonates with a parallel theme in the music…


Book cover of This Here Flesh: Spirituality, Liberation, and the Stories That Make Us

K.E. Andrews Author Of The Assassin of Grins and Secrets

From my list on morally gray woman in dark fantasy.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been a huge fan of fantasy books, especially ones that focus on women protagonists. Morally gray protagonists are the most interesting because they straddle the line between hero and villain, often making questionable choices to achieve a goal. I like to write characters who struggle with mental health issues because so often it can be overlooked in a fantasy story in favor of the bigger plot at hand. Women struggling with mental health, who are single mothers, those with disabilities, and those who have long been poorly represented in fiction are characters I like to read and write about.

K.E.'s book list on morally gray woman in dark fantasy

K.E. Andrews Why did K.E. love this book?

I normally don’t read personal essays, but from the moment I cracked open this book, I was sucked in by the lyrical words. Each chapter had something I could personally relate to and brought me to tears. Riley weaves so much emotion into every sentence, highlighting very personal struggles and generational pain in such a poignant way that you have to slow down to savor every word. This is by far my favorite nonfiction book.

By Cole Arthur Riley,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked This Here Flesh as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In her stunning debut, the creator of Black Liturgies weaves stories from three generations of her family alongside contemplative reflections to discover the “necessary rituals” that connect us with our belonging, dignity, and liberation.

“This is the kind of book that makes you different when you’re done.”—Ashley C. Ford, New York Times bestselling author of Somebody’s Daughter

“Reaches deep beneath the surface of words unspoken, wounds unhealed, and secrets untempered to break them open in order for fresh light to break through.”—Morgan Jerkins, New York Times bestselling author of This Will Be My Undoing and…


Book cover of One-Shot Harry

Michael R. Lane Author Of The Gem Connection

From my list on African American mysteries.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an avid reader, I read a wide variety of books. Of the fiction genre mystery and suspense remain my favorite. From the classics to the gritty, a well-told mystery is a literary gem. As my mystery palette has aged—like my taste in wine—so are my demands of what makes a good mystery novel. The best mysteries for me contain more than a serpentine journey toward the hidden truth. They have intriguing characters, crisp dialogue, interesting settings, formidable foes, and of course indispensable heroes or anti-heroes. My writing goal is aimed at achieving the same level of literary penmanship of the mysteries I enjoy reading so much.

Michael's book list on African American mysteries

Michael R. Lane Why did Michael love this book?

This historical novel takes place in 1963 Los Angeles. Harry Ingram is an African American Korean War veteran, news/forensic photographer, and process server. Ingram arrives at a scene to photograph a deadly automobile accident. He recognizes the vehicle. It belongs to an old army buddy. Ingram sees evidence of foul play when he develops his photos of the accident. He is compelled to investigate. With Martin Luther King Jr’s Freedom Rally just around the corner, racial tensions are running high. Ingram dives headlong into the sordid underbelly of LA. Armed primarily with his camera and wits Ingram tangles with gangsters, fanatics, racists, and blackmailers in an effort to weed out justice for his friend. The captivating content, distinctive characters, and crisp dialogue kept me on the edge of my seat. 

By Gary Phillips,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked One-Shot Harry as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Race and civil rights in 1963 Los Angeles provide a powerful backdrop in Gary Phillips’s riveting mystery about an African American crime scene photographer seeking justice for a friend—perfect for fans of Walter Mosley, James Ellroy, and George Pelecanos.

LOS ANGELES, 1963: Korean War veteran Harry Ingram earns a living as a news photographer and occasional process server: chasing police radio calls and dodging baseball bats. With racial tensions running high on the eve of Martin Luther King’s Freedom Rally, Ingram risks becoming a victim at every crime scene he photographs.

When Ingram hears about a deadly automobile accident on…


Book cover of Claire Blair's Unruly Hair: A Curly-Girl Tale (Brown Hair)

Bobbie Hinman Author Of The Knot Fairy

From my list on children’s picture books by first-time authors.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a former teacher, and grandmother of 13 now-grownup kids, I can’t begin to count the total number of children’s books I’ve read. A gazillion maybe? I have published 5 children’s books of my own and have read them to hundreds of classes all over the U.S. I have been an editor of children’s books for about 10 years and feel honored every time an author hands their precious manuscript over to me for assistance. I’ve read so, so many amazing books. It was difficult to name just a handful, but these books spoke to me, evoking emotions that stayed with me long after the last i was dotted and t was crossed. I hope you will feel that as well.

Bobbie's book list on children’s picture books by first-time authors

Bobbie Hinman Why did Bobbie love this book?

I have always believed that in a perfect children’s book, young readers are able to identify with the characters, perhaps even visualizing themselves in the story. This book goes above and beyond this belief. The main character has curly hair but, like most girls, thinks the grass is greener (or the hair is straighter) on all of the other girls. As Claire struggles to accept her big, unruly, curly hair, she embarks on a journey to find ways to change it. With the story’s charming illustrations and delightful rhyming text, this is a sweet story of acceptance and inclusion. But what really sets this book apart from other books is that it is available in 4 different versions! Readers can choose from African American Claire, Brunette Claire, Blonde Claire, or Redhead Claire! Wow!

By Tara Cavosie, Shereen Said (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Claire Blair's Unruly Hair as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Celebration of Curly Hair Love!

As Claire struggles to accept her big, unruly, curly hair, she embarks on a journey of self-love and acceptance...and along the way discovers that she and her hair have ALWAYS been perfect.

Filled with empowerment and page after page of fun, adorable illustrations, this book will inspire and reinforce the beautiful and important lesson of loving who you are!

Check out ALL four versions of this book! Available in Brown Hair, Black Hair, Blonde Hair and Red Hair, so that your little girl can choose the book that looks just like her!


Book cover of Kindred

Hajar Yazdiha Author Of The Struggle for the People's King: How Politics Transforms the Memory of the Civil Rights Movement

From my list on understanding revisionist history politics.

Why am I passionate about this?

I studied forty years of the political misuses of the memory of Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement as a sociologist at USC and the daughter of Iranian immigrants who has always been interested in questions of identity and belonging. My interest in civil rights struggles started early, growing up in Virginia, a state that celebrated the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday alongside Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. I wanted to understand how revisionist histories could become the mainstream account of the past and how they mattered for the future of democracy.

Hajar's book list on understanding revisionist history politics

Hajar Yazdiha Why did Hajar love this book?

I am, to put it lightly, obsessed with the way Octavia Butler revolutionizes the timescape and invites us to speculate about worlds that could be. In this and so many of her books, her vision of Afrofuturism is one that reminds us that our ancestral pasts and our imagined futures are always connected. 

I thought a lot about the future when I wrote my book, and I share Butler’s conviction that there is collective healing and liberation in revisiting and reimagining the past.

I also love that my neighborhood library in Pasadena is the one Octavia Butler used to frequent!

By Octavia E. Butler,

Why should I read it?

15 authors picked Kindred as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author of Parable of the Sower and MacArthur “Genius” Grant, Nebula, and Hugo award winner

The visionary time-travel classic whose Black female hero is pulled through time to face the horrors of American slavery and explores the impacts of racism, sexism, and white supremacy then and now.

“I lost an arm on my last trip home. My left arm.”

Dana’s torment begins when she suddenly vanishes on her 26th birthday from California, 1976, and is dragged through time to antebellum Maryland to rescue a boy named Rufus, heir to a slaveowner’s plantation. She soon…


Book cover of The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey

Deborah Fletcher Mello Author Of Playing with Danger

From my list on the dark and stormy side of the human spirit.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an award-winning, national best-selling author who loves reading as much as I love writing. Combine that with a good, smooth bourbon and it’s a win-win. Like my literary journey, my love for bourbon has been filled with surprises and challenges. Romance writing found me. I didn’t go looking for it. The journey introduced me to great writers and amazing stories and taught me to write better. Distilleries could extol the health benefits of bourbon, but I discovered it can be subtle, soul-searing, and pairs beautifully with a good meal and an even better book. Like my writing, bourbon leaves you feeling like you’ve had a great meal and threw in dessert!

Deborah's book list on the dark and stormy side of the human spirit

Deborah Fletcher Mello Why did Deborah love this book?

I love Walter Moseley and have read everything he’s written.

I discovered his books when former President Bill Clinton mentioned him during a State of the Union address and curiosity took me down to my local library to see what all the fuss was about. It was love at first line with his book Devil in a Red Dress.

Those that followed were equally impressive but there was something about The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey that took the storytelling to a whole other level. Part drama, part science fiction, it was a mesmerizing tale and again, showed the importance of storytelling that pulls a reader in and refuses to let them go.

I’d recommend this book if you’re looking for great writing, an air of mystery, and dynamic drama. It has that and so much more!

By Walter Mosley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Soon to be an Apple Plus series starring Samuel L. Jackson, a masterful, moving novel about age, memory, and family from one of the true literary icons of our time.

Marooned in an apartment that overflows with mementos from the past, 91-year-old Ptolemy Grey is all but forgotten by his family and the world. But when an unexpected opportunity arrives, everything changes for Ptolemy in ways as shocking and unanticipated as they are poignant and profound.


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