Brandon Massey, L.A. Banks, Tananarive Due, Terrence Taylor). Maybe he would enjoy graphic novels and comics: let him read about some black superheroes. Fire up his imagination by introducing him to science fiction.
Too often I think people assume that if a book is about a kid about the same age in about the same situation as the young reader then the young reader will automatically like the book. Maybe, but maybe not. The writer I loved the most when I was in high school was Stephen King, and even today I'm a big Harry Potter fan. I don't think it's a good idea to only focus on the outside circumstances of a person's life when thinking about books he might actually enjoy. Part of the pleasure of reading for me is escaping from the circumstances of my situation, if only for a short time.
Enjoyment. Pleasure. Fun. Keep those words in mind when shopping for a book for anyone. Instead of thinking what he "should" read, think of what might blow his mind or tickle him.
Teachers, librarians, booksellers, parents, young readers, read below and then if you have recommendations for this person, let us know in the comments. Thanks!
I would like to kindly ask if you had the time to suggest the top ten or twenty books, you feel, a young black man should read. I am looking to develop a list to find books for a young man, for the holidays and birthdays, who reads, slowly, with resistance and complaint, is struggling with his racial identity, his poverty, life with his mother and his sister, and without his absent father and extended family. Thank you very much for any thing you can suggest! I have posted this question, in greater detail, as the beginning of a new blog I have started on wordpress.