Best Selling Books by Roxane Gay

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Difficult Women

release date: Jan 03, 2017
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Difficult Women
Award-winning author and powerhouse talent Roxane Gay burst onto the scene with An Untamed State and the New York Times bestselling essay collection Bad Feminist (Harper Perennial). Gay returns with Difficult Women, a collection of stories of rare force and beauty, of hardscrabble lives, passionate loves, and quirky and vexed human connection. The women in these stories live lives of privilege and of poverty, are in marriages both loving and haunted by past crimes or emotional blackmail. A pair of sisters, grown now, have been inseparable ever since they were abducted together as children, and must negotiate the elder sister's marriage. A woman married to a twin pretends not to realize when her husband and his brother impersonate each other. A stripper putting herself through college fends off the advances of an overzealous customer. A black engineer moves to Upper Michigan for a job and faces the malign curiosity of her colleagues and the difficulty of leaving her past behind. From a girls’ fight club to a wealthy subdivision in Florida where neighbors conform, compete, and spy on each other, Gay delivers a wry, beautiful, haunting vision of modern America reminiscent of Merritt Tierce, Jamie Quatro, and Miranda July.

Bad Feminist

release date: Aug 05, 2014
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Bad Feminist
New York Times Bestseller A collection of essays spanning politics, criticism, and feminism from one of the most-watched young cultural observers of her generation, Roxane Gay. “Pink is my favorite color. I used to say my favorite color was black to be cool, but it is pink—all shades of pink. If I have an accessory, it is probably pink. I read Vogue, and I’m not doing it ironically, though it might seem that way. I once live-tweeted the September issue.” In these funny and insightful essays, Roxane Gay takes us through the journey of her evolution as a woman (Sweet Valley High) of color (The Help) while also taking readers on a ride through culture of the last few years (Girls, Django in Chains) and commenting on the state of feminism today (abortion, Chris Brown). The portrait that emerges is not only one of an incredibly insightful woman continually growing to understand herself and our society, but also one of our culture. Bad Feminist is a sharp, funny, and spot-on look at the ways in which the culture we consume becomes who we are, and an inspiring call-to-arms of all the ways we still need to do better.

Hunger

release date: Jun 13, 2017
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Hunger
From the New York Times bestselling author of Bad Feminist: a searingly honest memoir of food, weight, self-image, and learning how to feed your hunger while taking care of yourself. “I ate and ate and ate in the hopes that if I made myself big, my body would be safe. I buried the girl I was because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, but she is still there, somewhere. . . . I was trapped in my body, one that I barely recognized or understood, but at least I was safe.” In her phenomenally popular essays and long-running Tumblr blog, Roxane Gay has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she explores her past—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers along on her journey to understand and ultimately save herself. With the bracing candor, vulnerability, and power that have made her one of the most admired writers of her generation, Roxane explores what it means to learn to take care of yourself: how to feed your hungers for delicious and satisfying food, a smaller and safer body, and a body that can love and be loved—in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes.

The Banks

release date: Jul 31, 2019
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The Banks
Three generations of African American female master thieves must band together to pull off their greatest heist.

Ayiti

release date: Jun 12, 2018
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Ayiti
From New York Times -bestselling powerhouse Roxane Gay, Ayiti is a powerful collection exploring the Haitian diaspora experience. Originally published by a small press, this Grove Press paperback will make Gay’s debut widely available for the first time, including several new stories. In Ayiti, a married couple seeking boat passage to America prepares to leave their homeland. A young woman procures a voodoo love potion to ensnare a childhood classmate. A mother takes a foreign soldier into her home as a boarder, and into her bed. And a woman conceives a daughter on the bank of a river while fleeing a horrific massacre, a daughter who later moves to America for a new life but is perpetually haunted by the mysterious scent of blood. These early stories showcase Gay’s prowess as one of the voices of our age” (National Post, Canada).

Not That Bad

release date: May 01, 2018
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Not That Bad
Edited and with an introduction by Roxane Gay, the New York Times bestselling and deeply beloved author of Bad Feminist and Hunger, this anthology of first-person essays tackles rape, assault, and harassment head-on. “Roxane Gay is the brilliant girl-next-door: your best friend and your sharpest critic. . . . she is also required reading.”—People In this valuable and revealing anthology, cultural critic and bestselling author Roxane Gay collects original and previously published pieces that address what it means to live in a world where women have to measure the harassment, violence, and aggression they face, and where they are “routinely second-guessed, blown off, discredited, denigrated, besmirched, belittled, patronized, mocked, shamed, gaslit, insulted, bullied” for speaking out. Contributions include essays from established and up-and-coming writers, performers, and critics, including actors Ally Sheedy and Gabrielle Union and writers Amy Jo Burns, Lyz Lenz, Claire Schwartz, and Bob Shacochis. Covering a wide range of topics and experiences, from an exploration of the rape epidemic embedded in the refugee crisis to first-person accounts of child molestation, this collection is often deeply personal and is always unflinchingly honest. Like Rebecca Solnit’s Men Explain Things to Me, Not That Bad will resonate with every reader, saying “something in totality that we cannot say alone.” Searing and heartbreakingly candid, this provocative collection both reflects the world we live in and offers a call to arms insisting that “not that bad” must no longer be good enough.

How to Be Heard

release date: May 01, 2017
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How to Be Heard
Roxane Gay (@rgay) is one of the most-listened to young cultural observers. She has become an important voice for a generation, writing about the urgent issues of the day, from feminism and modern marriage, to television and police brutality. No matter the topic, her voice is clear, powerful and always honest. How to Be Heard is full of advice that anyone pursuing a creative life will find fascinating and useful: *You can be a writer if you want to (as long as you actually write). *If you're a woman, gay or a person of colour, there are probably more barriers. Know this. Be relentless any way. Strive for excellence. Learn how to kick the shit out of those barriers but don't assume every failure is about your identity because it isn't. *Accept that sometimes cream does rise to the top and hard work will eventually get noticed. *Learn to deal with rejection. You don't have to like it. The creative life involves rejection far more than acceptance. It's easier if you can accept that early on. After delving into the writing life, Gay looks at what is required to succeed in any creative endeavour. Woven throughout are her personal anecdotes and insights on using your voice, being heard and knowing how to listen. How to Be Heard is about finding a voice that is uniquely yours and making sure you are heard when it truly matters.

An Untamed State

release date: Jan 01, 2014
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An Untamed State
Her perfect life is shattered when Mireille is kidnapped by armed men in front of her father's estate in Haiti and she must endure the horrors and torments of her captors while her father inexplicably resists paying for her ransom.

Dress Like a Woman

release date: Feb 27, 2018
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Dress Like a Woman
At a time in which a woman can be a firefighter, surgeon, astronaut, military officer, athlete, judge, and more, what does it mean to dress like a woman? Dress Like a Woman turns that question on its head by sharing a myriad of interpretations across history. The book includes 300 incredible photographs that illustrate how women’s roles have changed over the last century. The women pictured in this book inhabit a fascinating intersection of gender, fashion, politics, culture, class, nationality, and race. There are some familiar faces, including trailblazers Amelia Earhart, Angela Davis, and Michelle Obama, but the majority of photographs are of ordinary working women from many backgrounds and professions. With essays by renowned fashion writer Vanessa Friedman and feminist writer Roxane Gay, Dress Like a Woman offers a comprehensive look at the role of gender and dress in the workplace.

Sacrifice of Darkness

release date: Nov 04, 2020
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Sacrifice of Darkness
New York Times bestselling author Roxane Gay (World of Wakanda, Difficult Women) adapts her short story “We Are the Sacrifice of Darkness” as a full-length graphic novel with writer Tracy Lynne Oliver (This Weekend), and artist Rebecca Kirby (Biopsy.) Expanding an unforgettable world where a tragic event forever bathes the world in darkness, The Sacrifice of Darkness follows one woman’s powerful journey through this new landscape as she discovers love, family, and the true light in a world seemingly robbed of any. This young adult drama challenges notions of identity, guilt, and survival in a graphic novel for fans of On A Sunbeam and Are You Listening?
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