In 2016, I've found new hope in Baltimore for children like Troy and so many others denied the pleasure and power of reading. According to last year's test scores, an average of only 15 percent of students tested between grades three through 10 met English language arts and literacy expectations on the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) test. And there's a disparity between black and white students: 31 percent of white students met those expectations, but only 13 percent of black students did. But, it seems, reading books is hot now. Not fisticuffs-over-a-pair-of-crisp-leather-Jordans hot, but popular enough to spark the interest of kids like Troy forever. A bubbling scene of black writers has emerged, budding a representative archive of stories, poems, and memoirs that have made the love of literacy an admirable trait in the home of the O's. People such as D. Watkins (a CP contributor), Bilphena Yahwon, Kaye Wise Whitehead, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Bobby Marvin Holmes, Sharea Harris, Lester Spence, Celeste Doaks, Erica Caine, Nakia Brown, Derick Ebert, Cija Jefferson, Sadiq Ali, Upile Chisala, Candice Abd'al-Rahim, MK Asante, Lawrence Burney (a CP contributor), and countless others are human hard-drives for words, emotions, and moments that happen to end up organized into literature. Their recent releases and publications represent a commitment to Baltimore becoming a literary powerhouse in the world. Moreover, these writers are spearheading a movement that encourages literacy that meets young readers halfway and counters so many of the problems that have marred past attempts at engaging black folk.