All year long our shelves are stocked with books celebrating the achievements and impact of Black Americans in our collective American experience. This is a curated selection of new, award-winning, and staff beloved books that commemorate these personal and historic achievements despite facing prejudice, discrimination, and racism throughout our nation's history. These books shared with family and friends illuminate our world & our history and engage necessary discussions about our collective responsibility to combat racism. They are available to order for shipping or contact free pickup.
"This collection of poems by women of color covers topics relating to social justice, activism, discrimination and empathy, focusing on the need to speak out and inspiring middle-graders." -Vogue
Woke: A Young Poet's Guide to Justice is a collection of poems to inspire kids to stay woke and become a new generation of activists.
The #1 New York Times bestseller and a USAToday bestseller!A timely, crucial, and empowering exploration of racism--and antiracism--in America
This is NOT a history book.
This is a book about the here and now.
A book to help us better understand why we are where we are.
A book about race.
Published in collaboration with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, discover over fifty remarkable African American women whose unique skills and contributions paved the way for the next generation of young people. Perfect for fans of Rad Women Worldwide, Women in Science, and Girls Think of Everything.
Imagine learning to read at the age of 116! Discover the true story of Mary Walker, the nation's oldest student who did just that, in this picture book from a Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator and a rising star author.
In 1854, Elizabeth "Lizzie" Jennings, an African American schoolteacher, fought back when she was unjustly denied entry to a New York City streetcar, sparking the beginnings of the long struggle to gain equal rights on public transportation.
From acclaimed author and illustrator pairing comes a beautiful picture book biography about the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin and how she fought for respect throughout her life.
Aretha Franklin is the Queen of Soul, a legend. But before she became a star, she was a shy little girl with a voice so powerful it made people jump up, sway, and hum along.
The inspirational story of George Washington Carver and his childhood secret garden is brought to life in this picture book biography by the author-illustrator team behind Muhammad Ali: A Champion Is Born. This nonfiction picture book is an excellent choice to share during homeschooling, in particular for children ages 4 to 6.
“A powerful story.” —The Horn Book
“A worthy addition to children’s biography collections.” —Booklist
“A solid treatment of an important but little-known figure, and it may prompt kids to think about the role and composition of a free press.” —BCCB
Zora Neale Hurston was confident, charismatic, and determined to be extraordinary. As a young woman, Hurston lived and wrote alongside such prominent authors as Langston Hughes and Alain Locke during the Harlem Renaissance. But unfortunately, despite writing the luminary work Their Eyes Were Watching God, she was always short of money.$5.99ISBN: 9781524789985Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Penguin Workshop - December 24th, 2019
This baseball league that was made up of African American players and run by African American owners ushered in the biggest change in the history of baseball.$12.99ISBN: 9781733176194Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Rebel Girls - November 12th, 2019
From the world of Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls comes a story based on the life of Madam C.J. Walker, America’s first female self-made millionaire.
Sarah is the first person in her family who wasn’t born into slavery in Delta, Louisiana. But being free doesn’t mean that Sarah doesn’t have to work.$17.99ISBN: 9780316475143Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - November 19th, 2019Author-illustrator Vashti Harrison shines a bold, joyous light on black men through history in this #1 New York Times bestseller.$12.95ISBN: 9781849766302Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Tate - December 17th, 2019$21.99ISBN: 9781534404908Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books - October 15th, 2019
Recipient of a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Award
Recipient of a Bologna Ragazzi Non-Fiction Special Mention Honor Award
A Kirkus Reviews Best Middle Grade Book of 2019
From celebrated author and illustrator Ashley Bryan comes a deeply moving picture book memoir about serving in the segregated army during World War II, and how love and the pur$17.99ISBN: 9781524765330Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Schwartz & Wade - September 3rd, 2019
Thurgood Marshall--the first black justice on the Supreme Court and a giant of the civil rights movement--jumps to life in this inspiring picture-book biography from an award-winning author and six-time Coretta Scott King, four-time Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator.$18.99ISBN: 9781547601073Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: Bloomsbury YA - September 17th, 2019
A timely and essential history of Black voter suppression, adapted from the National Book Award longlisted adult book$16.99ISBN: 9781338282801Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Scholastic Press - September 3rd, 2019An incredible memoir from Sharon Robinson about one of the most important years of the civil rights movement.$18.99ISBN: 9780823443314Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Neal Porter Books - August 27th, 2019
As a new generation of activists demands an end to racism, A Place to Land reflects on Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech and the movement that it galvanized.
Winner of the Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children
Selected for the Texas Bluebonnet Master List$20.95ISBN: 9781620145876Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Lee & Low Books - August 13th, 2019
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the publication of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, this beautiful biography of Maya Angelou describes how she rose above a childhood of trauma and emotional pain to become one of the most inspiring voices of our lifetime.
Writer, activist, trolley car conductor, dancer, mother, and humanitarian--Maya Angelou's life was marked by transfor$18.00ISBN: 9781597144032Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Heyday Books - February 1st, 2019
Building on the brilliance of Fred Korematsu Speaks Up, the newest installment in the Fighting for Justice series introduces young readers to another real-life champion for civil rights: Bridget "Biddy" Mason, an African American philanthropist, healer, and midwife who was born into slavery.$17.99ISBN: 9781624146909Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Page Street Kids - April 16th, 2019
Miles can’t sleep.
Taps his toes,
snaps his fingers,
can’t stop thinking of ways
to make music his own.$17.99ISBN: 9781681198521Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: Bloomsbury Children's Books - January 8th, 2019
Recipient of a Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Honor
Winner of the 2019 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Nonfiction
A NYPL Top Ten of 2019
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year$18.99ISBN: 9781481465618Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Beach Lane Books - September 25th, 2018
“When Barbara Jordan talked, we listened.” —Former President of the United States, Bill Clinton
Congresswoman Barbara Jordan had a big, bold, confident voice—and she knew how to use it!$5.99ISBN: 9780399541940Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Penguin Workshop - August 7th, 2018
It's up, up, and away with the Tuskegee Airmen, a heroic group of African American military pilots who helped the United States win World War II.$17.99ISBN: 9781250137524Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) - June 19th, 2018
The bold story of Katherine Johnson, an African-American mathematician who worked for NASA during the space race and was depicted in the film Hidden Figures.
You've likely heard of the historic Apollo 13 moon landing. But do you know about the mathematical genius who made sure that Apollo 13 returned safely home?$19.99ISBN: 9781419732355Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Harry N. Abrams - January 8th, 2019$19.99ISBN: 9780399581441Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Ten Speed Press - January 8th, 2019
A graphic novel biography of the escaped slave, abolitionist, public speaker, and most photographed man of the nineteenth century, based on his autobiographical writings and speeches, spotlighting the key events and people that shaped the life of this great American.$19.99ISBN: 9780316436427Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: Black Dog & Leventhal - January 2nd, 2018
A comprehensive, entertaining look at heroes, heroines, and critical moments from African American history -- from the slave trade to the Black Lives Matter movement -- by award-winning author Jabari Asim.$18.99ISBN: 9780544785137Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Clarion Books - January 2nd, 2018On a hot day in July 1919, five black youths went swimming in Lake Michigan, unintentionally floating close to the "white" beach. An angry white man began throwing stones at the boys, striking and killing one. Racial conflict on the beach erupted into days of urban violence that shook the city of Chicago to its foundations.$17.99ISBN: 9780062742469Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: HarperCollins - January 16th, 2018
Based on the New York Times bestselling book and the Academy Award–nominated movie, author Margot Lee Shetterly and Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Award winner Laura Freeman bring the incredibly inspiring true story of four black women who helped NASA launch men into space to picture book readers!$18.99ISBN: 9780823438730Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Holiday House - January 7th, 2020
A window into a child's experience of the Great Migration from the award-winning creators of Before She Was Harriet and Finding Langston.$16.99ISBN: 9780316475112Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - December 5th, 2017
This beautifully illustrated board book edition of instant bestseller Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History showcases women who changed the world and is the perfect goodnight book to inspire big dreams.$16.99ISBN: 9780763680466Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: Candlewick - September 12th, 2017
In luminous paintings and arresting poems, two of children’s literature’s top African-American scholars track Arturo Schomburg’s quest to correct history.
Where is our historian to give us our side? Arturo asked.$21.95ISBN: 9781419721311Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Harry N. Abrams - June 13th, 2017$17.99ISBN: 9781499802399Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: little bee books - January 17th, 2017
A beautiful picture book about Ann Cole Lowe, a little-known African-American fashion designer who battled personal and social adversity in order to pursue her passion of making beautiful gowns and went on to become one of society's top designers.
Wisps of cloth would fall from their worktables like confetti,
and Ann would scoop them up and turn them into flowers
$17.99ISBN: 9781481468244Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: Atheneum Books for Young Readers - January 24th, 2017
Celebrate the life of Lena Horne, the pioneering African American actress and civil rights activist, with this inspiring and powerful picture book from award-winning author Carole Boston Weatherford.
You have to be taught to be second class; you’re not born that way.
Lena Horne was born into the freedom struggle, to a family of teachers and activists.$12.99ISBN: 9781250073495Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Square Fish - January 3rd, 2017
An astonishing World War II military story of civil rights from New York Times bestselling author and Newbery Honor recipient Steve Sheinkin.
A National Book Award Finalist
A YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction Finalist
A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year$9.99ISBN: 9781338239461Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Scholastic Focus - January 7th, 2020The riveting story of how the Supreme Court turned a blind eye on justice, stripped away the equal rights promised to all Americans, and ushered in the era of Jim Crow.$18.99ISBN: 9781338323481Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Scholastic Focus - January 7th, 2020A thrilling and incisive examination of the post-Reconstruction era struggle for and suppression of African American voting rights in the United States.
Following the Civil War, the Reconstruction era raised a new question to those in power in the US: Should African Americans, so many of them former slaves, be granted the right to vote?
$18.99ISBN: 9780062888785Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: HarperCollins - January 28th, 2020
Lyrical, inspiring, and affecting text paired with bright, appealing illustrations make Ready to Fly perfect for aspiring ballerinas everywhere who are ready to leap and to spread their wings!$17.99ISBN: 9780062851093Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Balzer + Bray - January 21st, 2020
A spirited picture book biography about Althea Gibson, the first black Wimbledon, French, and U.S.$9.99ISBN: 9781338309850Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Scholastic Nonfiction - December 26th, 2019A classic and highly acclaimed biography of civil rights activist Malcolm X, ever more relevant for today's readers.$10.99ISBN: 9780358094258Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Clarion Books - November 19th, 2019In 1944, a groundbreaking operation repaired the congenital heart defect known as blue baby syndrome. The operation’s success brought the surgeon Alfred Blalock international fame and paved the way for open-heart surgery.$18.99ISBN: 9781543512816Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Capstone Editions - September 1st, 2019
The mist in Charleston Inner Harbor was heavy, but not heavy enough to disguise the stolen Confederate steamship, the Planter, from Confederate soldiers. In the early hours of May 13, 1862, in the midst of the deadly U.S. Civil War, an enslaved man named Robert Smalls was about to carry out a perilous plan of escape.$18.99ISBN: 9781629797755Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Calkins Creek - October 15th, 2019
An ALSC Notable Children's Book * A Kirkus Reviews Best Book * A Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People$17.99ISBN: 9781534440838Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Atheneum Books for Young Readers - July 2nd, 2019
A Kirkus Reviews Best Middle Grade Book of 2019
“This rich volume is a national treasure.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Captivating, informative, and inspiring…Easy to follow and hard to put down.” —School Library Journal (starred review)
The inspiring autobiography of NASA mathematici$17.99ISBN: 9781328780966Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Versify - April 2nd, 2019Winner of the 2020 Caldecott Medal
A 2020 Newbery Honor Book
Winner of the 2020 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award
The Newbery Award-winning author of THE CROSSOVER pens an ode to black American triumph and tribulation, with art from a two-time Caldecott Honoree.
Originally performed for ESPN's The Undefeated, this poem is a love letter to black life$19.99ISBN: 9781338262049Availability: Usually Ships in 3-7 Days - Not in stock but can be ordered.Published: Scholastic Nonfiction - January 29th, 2019Henry Louis Gates, Jr. presents a journey through America's past and our nation's attempts at renewal in this look at the Civil War's conclusion, Reconstruction, and the rise of Jim Crow segregation.$19.99ISBN: 9781512483758Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Millbrook Press (Tm) - November 1st, 2018
A must-purchase picture book biography of a figure sure to inspire awe and admiration among readers.--School Library Journal (starred review)
Extraordinary illustrations and lyrical text present pioneering African American scientist Ernest Everett Just.$19.99ISBN: 9780374306120Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) - October 23rd, 2018
An ALA Notable Book of 2019
NYPL Best Book for Teens of 2018
A 2018 Booklist Youth Editors' Choice
A Center for the Study of Multicultural Children's Literature Best Book of 2018
A Kirkus Reviews Best YA Nonfiction Book of 2018
An ALSC Notable Children's Book of 2019
A YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Award Nominee$17.99ISBN: 9781442421134Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books - January 15th, 2019
Recipient of a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Award
A Kirkus Reviews Best Picture Book of 2019
A young slave girl witnesses the heartbreak and hopefulness of her family and their plantation community when her brother escapes for freedom in this brilliantly conceived picture book by Coretta Scott King Award winner James E.$17.99ISBN: 9781419731600Availability: Backordered - On Order with Publisher - May Be Available to OrderPublished: Harry N. Abrams - January 8th, 2019$22.99ISBN: 9781786031587Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: Wide Eyed Editions - February 1st, 2018“...to be revisited again and again…The candy-colored pages and straightforward stories are hard to resist…” –The New York Times
“...diverse collection of iconic figures…vibrantly illustrated…beautifully crafted volume…” –Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
“…exuberant$17.99ISBN: 9780062651730Availability: On Our Shelves NowPublished: HarperCollins - January 9th, 2018
A beautiful picture book for sharing and marking special occasions such as graduation, inspired by the life of the first African American woman to travel in space, Mae Jemison. An Amazon Best Book of the Month!
A great classroom and bedtime read-aloud, Mae Among the Stars is the perfect book for young readers who have big dreams and even bigger hearts.
New Must Read Books!