#CaitTacklesTBRPile—Sad, Black, and Fat: Musings from the Intersection by Tangela Williams-Spann

I love discovering new authors through Twitter writing chats. That’s how I met Tangela Williams-Spann. When she had put a call out to podcasters a few weeks ago, I let her know I was interested in interviewing her! I was so happy when she accepted, and the plan is to have Tangela Williams-Spann as a guest for S2 of In the ’Cosm, coming this fall!

But not only did I want to do the interview because this author is a lovely human, Williams-Spann also wrote a book with a title I could not ignore—Sad, Black, and Fat: Musings from the Intersection. As I began to read the eARC, I was immediately taken in:

I know mental health is taboo in the Black community.

I’m hoping that my honesty helps to normalize talking about mental health with Black folks.

Tangela Williams-Spann, Introduction chapter

Sad, Black, and Fat is a collection of short personal essays and poems about Williams-Spann’s lived experiences with managing mental health, being a Black woman, and balancing weight for health reasons while staying body positive. As the full title implies, Williams-Spann also shows the intersections between these lived experiences.

As a reader, I felt the way you do when a friend trusts you with their diary. Williams-Spann lets us partake in her strengths and vulnerabilities throughout her non-fiction storytelling, even giving us an idea what going through the preparation and aftermath of bariatric surgery was like for her. (Btw, William-Spann’s spouse seems like a really nice guy, but when I read that he ate a bacon cheeseburger in front of her as she was prepping with a liquid diet, I shouted aloud, “DUDE!”)

Even though the author doesn’t ignore ugly truths, Williams-Spann somehow always bring us to a place of hope, in how she presses on while self-checking when to pause.

Not allowing your feelings the space to exist is a form of self-harm in my mind.

Tangela Williams-Spann, The Floor Isn’t Lava

I always tend to cheer when fellow authors who manage mental illness aren’t afraid to “go there.” The candour throughout this work is so refreshing.

I highly recommend this book and admire the author even more than I did before I read it. You can learn more about Tangela Williams-Spann by following her author website and connecting with her on Twitter!

Book cover description: A cartoon of a Black woman with her hair up in an orange band is wearing a teal sweater with an aqua collar, aqua tights, and a burgundy skirt with orange shoes. She is fat and appears to be sad. She is standing in the middle of an empty 4-way intersection. There are people  on sidewalks on each side of the street behind her.
This book is available for preorder and will be released on August 5, 2021! Look for it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other online booksellers!


Greyscale headshot of Cait Gordon wearing a dark shirt.


Cait Gordon is a disability advocate for the written word who is trying to tackle her TBR pile during a pandemic!

Cait is also the author of humorous space opera novels Life in the ’Cosm and The Stealth Lovers, and she is the co-editor of the Prix Aurora Award nominated anthology Nothing Without Us. When Cait’s not writing, she’s editing manuscripts and running The Spoonie Authors Network, a blog whose contributors manage disabilities and/or chronic conditions. Her latest new adventure is hosting the In the ’Cosm podcast, which is really an excuse to gush over creative humans she admires.

2 thoughts on “#CaitTacklesTBRPile—Sad, Black, and Fat: Musings from the Intersection by Tangela Williams-Spann

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