I’ve had the opportunity to hear George M. Johnson speak twice now, but until recently, I hadn’t added any of their books to the top of my TBR.
When I made my Winter TBR list for Top Ten Tuesday a little while back, this was one of the nonfiction texts that I added to my stack.
(Look at me, actually reading things from my list.)
This memoir chronicals the relationships between George, Garrett, Rall, and Rasul, and the grandmother who was instrumental in their upbringing.
(If you slide to the second photo) the sticky notes says…
We Are Not Broken is a love letter to the Black grandmother and the joy of Black boyhood. Johnson is intentional about not centering their narrative around trauma. While they tell stories about their childhood, they’re not shy about critiquing practices that have previously been attributed to cultural norms.
The structure of the work revolved a round what they call “Nannyisms” — words of wisdom passed down to Johnson and their brothers (cousins) about ways to walk in the world applied to stories about the bonds of family, the love of a matriarch, coming into one’s own, and acceptance.
In some ways this memoir made me feel seen, and I loved that.