Charis Books and More Logo

African Mythology Smackdown with Roseanne Brown, Jordan Ifueko, and Namina Forna

Event date: 
Friday, February 12, 2021 - 8:30pm to 10:00pm

Join authors Roseanne Brown, Jordan Ifueko, and Namina Forna as they come together to defend their favorite figures from African mythology and explain why they deserve the right to be crowned king of the smackdown, all in celebration of Forna's debut novel, The Gilded Ones. The Gilded Ones is already being hailed as one of the most anticipated fantasy books of 2021 and the start of a bold and immersive series for fans of Children of Blood and Bone and Black Panther. This event is co-hosted by the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History.

Sixteen-year-old Deka lives in fear and anticipation of the blood ceremony that will determine whether she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her unnatural intuition, Deka prays for red blood so she can finally feel like she belongs.

But on the day of the ceremony, her blood runs gold, the color of impurity–and Deka knows she will face a consequence worse than death.

Then a mysterious woman comes to her with a choice: stay in the village and submit to her fate, or leave to fight for the emperor in an army of girls just like her. They are called alaki–near-immortals with rare gifts. And they are the only ones who can stop the empire's greatest threat.

Knowing the dangers that lie ahead yet yearning for acceptance, Deka decides to leave the only life she's ever known. But as she journeys to the capital to train for the biggest battle of her life, she will discover that the great walled city holds many surprises. Nothing and no one are quite what they seem to be–not even Deka herself.

This event is free and open to all people, especially to those who have no income or low income right now, but we encourage and appreciate a solidarity donation in support of the work of Charis Circle, our programming non-profit. Charis Circle's mission is to foster sustainable feminist communities, work for social justice, and encourage the expression of diverse and marginalized voices.

This event takes place on crowdcast, Charis' virtual event platform. Register here.

We will be archiving this event and adding closed captioning as soon as possible after airing so that it will be accessible to deaf and HOH people. If you have other accessibility needs or if you are someone who has skills in making digital events more accessible please don't hesitate to reach out to We are actively learning the best practices for this technology and we welcome your feedback as we begin this new way of connecting across distances.

By attending our virtual event you agree to our Code of Conduct: Our event seeks to provide a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ethnicity, religion (or lack thereof), class, or technology choices. We do not tolerate harassment in any form. Sexual language and imagery are not appropriate. Anyone violating these rules will be expelled from this event and all future events at the discretion of the organizers. Please report all harassment to immediately.

Roseanne “Rosie” A. Brown was born in Kumasi, Ghana and immigrated to the wild jungles of central Maryland as a child. She graduated from the University of Maryland with a Bachelor’s in Journalism and was also a teaching assistant for the school’s Jiménez-Porter Writers’ House program. Her first book is A Song of Wraiths and Ruin. Her journalistic work has been featured by Voice of America among other outlets. She lives outside Washington D.C. and is represented by Quressa Robinson of Nelson Literary Agency.

Jordan Ifueko is the New York Times Bestselling author of the YA fantasy series RAYBEARER. She's a fan of fairy tales with lots of shea butter and 4c curls, and takes payment in plates of fried plantain.

Namina Forna is a young adult novelist based in Los Angeles, and the author of the epic fantasy YA novel The Gilded Ones. Originally from Sierra Leone, West Africa, she moved to the US when she was nine and has been traveling back and forth ever since. Namina loves building fantastical worlds and telling stories with fierce female leads.

Event address: 
The Gilded Ones Cover Image
ISBN: 9781984848697
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Delacorte Press - February 9th, 2021


“Namina Forna Could Be The Toni Morrison Of YA Fantasy.” –Refinery 29 

“Fans of Children of Blood and Bone, Mulan, and the Dora Milaje from Black Panther are going to adore this one.” BuzzFeed

Raybearer Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419739828
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Amulet Books - August 18th, 2020

Named one of the best books of the year by People Magazine, Buzzfeed, New York Public Library, Chicago Public Library, Kirkus Reviews, School Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, and more!


A Song of Wraiths and Ruin Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062891495
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Balzer + Bray - June 2nd, 2020

An instant New York Times bestseller!

Event Summary: 
Join authors Roseanne Brown, Jordan Ifueko, and Namina Forna as they come together to defend their favorite figures from African mythology and explain why they deserve the right to be crowned king of the smackdown, all in celebration of The Gilded Ones.