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A compulsive, darkly funny, razor-sharp send-up of the starkly white world of book publishing.

Won by Bloomsbury in a heated nine-way auction, The Other Black Girl is already an in-house favourite of Bloomsbury staff across the globe.

Keep reading to find out why we can’t stop talking about this book!


Introducing Zakiya Dalila Harris


About the book

Twenty-six-year-old editorial assistant Nella Rogers is tired of being the only Black employee at Wagner Books. Fed up with the isolation and the micro-aggressions, she’s thrilled when Hazel starts working in the cubicle beside hers. They’ve only just started comparing natural hair care regimens, though, when a string of uncomfortable events cause Nella to become Public Enemy Number One and Hazel, the Office Darling.

Then the notes begin to appear on Nella’s desk: LEAVE WAGNER. NOW.

It’s hard to believe Hazel is behind these hostile messages. But as Nella starts to spiral and obsess over the sinister forces at play, she soon realises that there is a lot more at stake than her career.

A whip-smart and dynamic thriller and sly social commentary, The Other Black Girl will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very last twist.

The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris
Publication: 01 June 2021
Category: Fiction
Format: Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9781526630384
RRP: $29.99

Read an extract of the book that will have EVERYONE talking. 


About Zakiya Dalila Harris

Zakiya Dalila Harris spent three years at Knopf before leaving to write The Other Black Girl. Prior to working in publishing, she received her MFA in creative writing from the New School and she currently teaches writing to children at Writopia Lab. Her work has appeared in Guernica and she reviews for The Rumpus. She lives in New York.


A note from Zakiya Dalila Harris

Leave. Now. What would you do if this anonymous note suddenly appeared on your desk?

I started writing this novel while I was working in editorial at Knopf Doubleday, after the rare occurrence of running into another young Black woman in the bathroom. I was excited and surprised to see her – and then surprised that I was so surprised. When she didn’t acknowledge me in the bathroom mirror, I wondered: what if there can be only one of us?

I love gripping stories that comment upon insidious social norms like Get Out, The Stepford Wives and The Twilight Zone. The Other Black Girl blends my love for genre bending as well as psychological drama. And I have a soft spot for stories about Black female friendship, especially Sula and Nel in Toni Morrison’s Sula and Irene and Claire in Nella Larsen’s Passing, my character’s namesake. This is a darkly funny suspense novel that’s tinged with horror and speculative elements, that’s also a comment on female competition, workplace culture, diversity and the concept of Blackness.

Most importantly though, this is a book about the ever-present pressure to fit in and how much we’re willing to sacrifice to get what we want.

Thank you so much for your support. I really hope I’ll be able to come out to New Zealand and Australia at some point when everything is safe. But until then, I really hope you enjoy reading The Other Black Girl and I can’t wait to hear what you think.

You can find me on Twitter at @zakiya_harris


Why we love The Other Black Girl

‘What a treat this is. It’s so smart. Wickedly insightful in parts and turn-the-page tense in others! Loved it.’

‘This is a novel that charges headfirst into the subject of race, class, and diversity in the publishing industry. Black main characters anxiously navigate in-house cover meetings, sensitivity reads, and relationships with powerful, white authors and managers who control their career trajectories. Propulsive writing from an exciting new voice, this is a book you won’t be able to put down!’

‘I enjoyed how this timely book from a diverse author skewers the publishing industry’s obsession with timely books from diverse authors.’

‘You can tell right away that the author is a book lover, much of the plot feels like a knowing nod and wink to the crime and sci fi genres. I read this in 2 days, I had not planned to, I just could not stop going back and picking it up. I’d describe it as a black ‘Bridget Jones’ for a new generation, packed with sly humour, and wonderful characters. I particularly loved the friendship between Nella and Malaika. This is a book of its time, and one that people will keep referring back to many years from now.’

‘Utterly compelling… Zakiya perfectly captures some of the larger than life personalities in publishing!’

‘This gripping and clever page-turner will hook you in from the very first page. A compulsive story of a young woman’s early career in publishing as she navigates female friendship, increasing work pressure and power dynamics within the workplace. The book then becomes something else entirely; an unnerving fast-paced thriller you won’t want to put down. I was glued to the pages right up to the final showdown and the hugely satisfying ending.’

‘Completely brilliant.  The book is so observant of the complex politics and power plays in some workplaces. The sometimes jarring and overly forced camaraderie between colleagues – and especially between managers and their teams. And just the paranoia that people can feel having been overlooked when they badly want to succeed.’

‘Saying I loved this isn’t really good enough. Smart, tense and thought-provoking; this is contemporary fiction at its very best and an astute mirror, reflecting our industry back to us.’


A dazzling campaign

  • A number of exclusive super proofs are available now! Speak to your Bloomsbury Sales Rep to request a copy.
  • TV rights have already been optioned by Hulu with Temple Hill Entertainment, following a heated bidding war. Temple Hill is the production company of Twilight and the producer worked on shows including Orange is the New Black and Narcos.
  • A huge suite of striking POS will be available: samplers, tote bags, window decals, bookmarks, posters and more!
  • Promotional activity throughout the year with online reading communities such as Better Reading and The Tandem Collective.
  • Podcast advertising with Chat 10 Looks 3 on publication, reaching out to their huge community of book-loving Chatters.
  • Print advertising with key publications such as Australian Women’s Weekly.
  • An astonishing publicity campaign will build to, through and from publication, including a major feature interview with Zakiya Dalila Harris in one of Australia’s leading broadsheets.
  • Expecting a huge range of publicity coverage across print, radio, TV and online which will build on an unmissable marketing campaign.
  • Zakiya Dalila Harris will be available for digital events and festivals throughout 2021.
  • Backed by a huge digital campaign including Google Display Ads and targeted Social Media advertising.
  • A large suite of digital assets will be available for all retailers.

Advance copy giveaway

Be one of the first people to read The Other Black Girl. Email Bloomsbury with PUBLISHING in the subject line to win one of 15 exclusive early ARCs.




Contact us


Kelsey Oldham

Digital editor
Brad Jefferies

Acting editor, Daily
Matthia Dempsey

Editorial assistant
Anthea Yang

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