31 Diverse Children’s Books (The Color of Life)

31 Diverse Children’s Books (The Color of Life) January 12, 2019

Since The Color of Life launches into this world in less than a month, it’s only appropriate that I ramp up the book here on the blog. Feel free to share the highlighted image and be sure to preorder your copy today! 

Image courtesy of author

This last week has found me engaged in a slew of emails, from book launch events, to conversations with marketing and publicity, to dialogue with a host of individuals who share a common passion for getting diverse literature into the hands of our children. Even though the context of the featured quote (from my book) is different, it is a “matter of mothers and fathers everywhere, of flesh and blood, of adoption and circumstance, embracing each and every one of our children.”

And one of the best ways we grown-ups can embrace our collective village of children is by reading books that feature children of color. 

Although this list is not exhaustive by any means, here’s a list of some of our favorites, including a bunch of recommendations from Helen Lee, a wise friend I’ve been listening to for awhile now.

Christian Children’s Books: 

Children of God Storybook Bible (Desmond Tutu)

The Jesus Storybook Bible & Loved: The Lord’s Prayer (Sally Lloyd Jones)

God’s Very Good Idea (Trillia Newbill)

When God Made You When God Made Light (Matthew Paul Turner)

The World is Awake (Linsey Davis)

Listening With My Heart (Gabi Garcia)

 

General storybooks: 

Good Morning, SupermanBedtime for Batman & Be a Star, Wonder Woman!(Michael Dahl)

The Day You Begin (Jacqueline Woodson)

The Beatitudes: From Slavery to Civil Rights (Carole Boston Weatherford)

A is for Activist (Innosanto Nagara)

Martin’s Big Words (Doreen Rappaport)

Bee-bim Bop!, A Long Walk to Water & Project Mulberry (Linda Sue Park)

Mixed Me! (Taye Diggs)

Please, Baby, Please (Tonya Lewis Lee)

Happy! (Pharrell Williams – dance party: not optional!)

The Snowy Day (Ezra Jack Keats)

Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to my Daughters (Barack Obama)

 

Middle-grade:

Crossing the Wire (Will Hobbs)

The Crossover & Rebound (Kwame Alexander)

Bud, Not Buddy & The Watsons Go to Birmingham (Christopher Paul Curtis)

One Crazy Summer (Rita Williams-Garcia)

Brown Girl Dreaming Locomotion (Jacqueline Woodson)

Reading diverse literature matters to us as grown-ups and it matters to our children – after all, when we read, we learn to color outside the lines for we enter worlds that are not our own. And when that happens, we begin to shed layers of privilege and power, dismantling unjust systems that don’t want to see the flourishing of every human, everywhere.

Now, cozy up with a kid you love and a good, diverse book!

Like I said, this list is not exhaustive by any means, woefully lacking in representation by authors of Asian and Latinx descent. So, what children’s books would you add? Grow our list! 

*Post contains Amazon Affiliate links

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