Riot Headline 10 Exciting Books to Read this Summer

A Beautiful Frankenstein

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Jess and Trisha discuss some non-terrible Valentine’s week romance coverage, talk about the way romance represents the experience of being Black in history…and Trisha has a confession to make.

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As discussed, our fellow Rioters Silvana and Carole are just the best. 

Please enjoy the romance coverage from NPR via podcast and this interview Beverly Jenkins did with Karen Grigsby Bates.

Also the New York Times has come a long way, y’all. [NYT]

There WAS in fact a Reading Pathways piece on Book Riot about Beverly Jenkins! And it was written by yet another of the actual best, Amanda Diehl [insert heart eyes emoji].

This is your regular reminder (from Trisha) to read this Book Riot piece about Bridgerton (by Jess).

Post show note: Okay, we were wrong, and Black Panther came out in 2018. Time is complicated!

Books Discussed

Indigo, Forbidden, and basically everything else by Beverly Jenkins

That Could Be Enough and Agnes Moor’s Wild Knight by Alyssa Cole

Confessions in B Flat by Donna Hill

The Preacher’s Promise by Piper Hughley

A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby by Vanessa Riley

The Duke Who Didn’t by Courtney Milan

Rafe and Xeni by Rebekah Weatherspoon

Two Rogues Make a Right by Cat Sebastian

Love Lettering by Kate Clayborn

Please send Trisha your favorite romances that aren’t especially plot-driven (she clearly needs the help). As always, you can find Jess and Trisha at the WIR email address ( You can also find us on Twitter (@jessisreading and @trishahaleybrwn), or Instagram (@jess_is_reading and @trishahaleybrown).