Brit Bennett’s long-awaited sophomore book sits in the number one spot on The New York Times Best Sellers list as several prominent book clubs make it a monthly selection.
The Vanishing Half explores racial identity among twin sisters who flee their Southern black community and lead separate lives after one starts passing as white. Spanning generations from the South to the West between the 1950s to the 1990s, the themes in the novel may resonate more with readers as anti-racism awareness rises after the Memorial Day police killing of George Floyd.
In nonfiction, many black authors are seeing their works soar on the best-selling lists as well, including So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo, Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad, and The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander.
Brit’s novel, coming out four years after her memorable debut The Mothers, is the only piece of fiction touching on race in the list’s top 10.
On top of topping the charts, The Vanishing Half has been chosen for the following book clubs:
- Barnes & Noble Book Club: The bookseller will offer a free live virtual event on its Facebook page with Brit in conversation with Kiley Reid, author of Such a Fun Age, on Tuesday, July 7, at 7 p.m. EST.
- Belletrist: The book club co-organized by actress Emma Roberts wrote in an Instagram post that Brit will contribute to a conversation. “Please stay tuned as we will have a more in depth conversation with Brit towards the end of the month, and look out for our weekly quotes, which are curated this month by this month’s author!”
- GMA Book Club: Good Morning America asked its Instagram book club followers for questions that Brit could answer. The first post features Brit in a video sharing the book she was reading at the time, The Prettiest Star by Carter Sickels.
- Book of the Month: Now a two-time BOTM author, Brit starred in a virtual tour on the book subscription service’s Instagram. “Head to our IGTV to watch the episode, where Brit talks about her inspirations for the book, her favorite authors, and why NYC > LA.”