Steven Barnes was recommended for his alternate reality books "Lion's Blood" and "Zulu Heart". I only skimmed both. I found his premise interesting, that the black death decimated Europe so that Africa rose to conquer the world. The concept was not fully realized which made it hard to read. I was more interested in the world than I with the characters. He also wrote "Blood Brothers" which dealt with voodoo and the long term effects of slavery generations later. It similarly hard to read.