18 Books With An Afro-Latino Protagonist

If you're the kind of person who rather spend their days wrapped up in a good novel, we've chosen to shine the spotlight on a genre that often goes overlooked: Afro-Latino literature. So, pick up one of these 18 books with an Afro-Latino protagonist: 

MORE: 11 Latina Feminist Reads For The Summer



In Dia of the Dead, author Brit Brinson tackles the pressures of being an Afro-Latina in Hollywood with limited roles and being the sole breadwinner of the family through her main protaganist Dia Summers. While Dia is struggling with issues of identity in a shallow industry, Dia also has to rise up and save the world from an imminent zombie attack. This YA novel is sure to bring the excitment along with a few scares.

Dia of the Dead by Brit Brinson, $9.99,  Amazon (Free on Kindle Unlimited) 



Miles Morales questions his identity as 'Spiderman' the super hero since the world keeps sending him signals that afro-latino boys have no business saving others. However, his spidey senses are going haywire admist the lectures his history teacher gives on the "benefits" of slavery. When Miles uncovers a dangerous plot, he knows it's time to suit up and save the world. Miles Morales by Jason Reynolds is the Spiderman story we have all been waiting for. (Miles Morales the animated movie, starring Donald Glover as Miles is releasing in theaters on December of 2018)

Miles Morales by Jason Reynolds, $9.89, Amazon



Hija de Mi Madre by Ynanna Djehunty is a collection of personal essays, poems, and research that reflect the author's life as an African Latina. From an academic standpoint, Djehunty dissects identity and racisim and the affects they have had on her life.

Hija de Mi Madre by Ynanna Djehunty, $20.00, Amazon


Daughters of the Stone by Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa is the tale of women across generations connecting through shared pain and crisis. Slavery, identity, and mother-daughter bonds are just a few of the topics portrayed in this multi-generational story. Daughters of the Stone highlights the stength and power of women, especially women of color, everywhere.

Daughters of the Stone by Dahlma Llanos-FIgueroa, $7.06, Amazon


Women Warriors of the Afro-Latina Diaspora by Dr. Marta Moreno-Vega is a collection of essays and poems from four Afro-Latina women in which they each detail the racism they have faced and the effects racism has had on how they each view the complexity of their cultural identity.

Women Warriors of the Afro-Latina Diaspora by Dr. Marta Moreno-Vega, $9.99 (Kindle), Amazon


Shadowshaper brings us one of the few Afro-Latina protagonists in YA fiction: Sierra Santiago, a Brooklyn muralist who discovers she comes from a long line of spiritual artists/magicians called Shadowshapers. 

Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older$11.99, Amazon


Veronica Chambers has written numerous novels for adults and youth with Afro-Latino characters, but she's best known for her memoir, Mama's Girl. In this brutal, honest work, Chamber details her childhood growing up with her mama, a hardworking Panamanian immigrant who expects nothing short of perfection from her daughter. 

Mama's Girl by Veronica Chambers, $10.78, Amazon


No list of Afro-Latino literature would be complete without mention of Piri Thomas' memoir Down These Mean Streets. The work follows Piri, a dark-skinned boricua, through his descent into the criminal underbelly of El Barrio, drug addiction and prison. Along the way, he learned a lot about himself — and his own identity.

Down These Mean Streets by Piri Thomas, $11.78, Amazon


Three friends — Jackie, Hazel, Irena and Lourdes — embark on a road-trip across the United States, and discover a lot about themselves (and each other!) along the way in Sofia Quintero's novel Divas Don't Yield

Divas Don't Yield by Sofia Quintero, $13.47, Amazon


In Bird of Paradiseauthor Raquel Cepeda takes readers through her year-long journey to learn the details of her ancestry. Along the way, she teaches us all a little something about what it means to be Latino in America today. 

Bird of Paradise: How I Became Latina by Raquel Cepeda, $15, Amazon


Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez's chick-lit novel The Dirty Girls Social Club tells the tale of six twenty-something friends who meet twice a year to catch up on each other's lives, careers and romances. Valdes-Rodriguez's characters mirror the diversity you probably find in your own friend group — and one of the six mujeres happens to be Afro-Latina.

The Dirty Girls Social Club, $10.55, Amazon


In the memoir Black Cuban, Black American: A MemoirCuban-American author Evelio Grillo takes reader through his upbringing and adulthood as a Black Cuban in the early twentieth century. 

Black Cuban, Black American by Evelio Grillo, $12.56, Amazon




Our Lady of the Night by Mayra Santos-Febres tells the tale of a black Puerto Rican woman who becomes the island's most feared and respected brothel madam. 

Our Lady Of The Night by Mayra Santos-Febres, $13.22,Amazon


In City of God by Paulo Lins, a young Afro-Brazilian man from the streets of Cidade de Deus, one of the country's most notorious favelas, uses photographer as a means to escape — and understand — his impoverished surroundings. 

City of God by Paulo Lins, $11.30, Amazon



Willie Perdomo may be world-renowned for his poetry, but we have a soft spot for his children's book Clemente!, a look at the life (and tragic death) of Roberto Clemente, the first Latin American player to be inducted in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Clemente! by Willie Perdomo, $13.59, Amazon


In The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao, Oscar Wao — a nerdy Dominican kid from New Jersey — struggles between his identity as black and Latino, especially when he leaves for college. There, the white kids treat him with "inhuman cheeriness" and the colored kids declare that he's "not Dominican."

The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, $9.07, Amazon


The Autobiography of Maria Elena MoyanoThe Life & Death Of A Peruvian Activist details the life of Marie Elena Moyanoan Afro-Peruvian activist. The book takes readers through her early life as a poor woman in Peru, and ends with her death at the hands of the Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso) revolutionary movement. 

The Autobiography of Maria Elena Moyano, $23.75, Amazon


In this epistolary coming-of-age novel, a young Afro-Cuban girl writes letters to her dead mother, detailing her struggles coming to term with her skin, her hair, her race. Her letters 

Letters To My Mother by Teresa Cardenas, $5.99 (Kindle), Amazon