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Books to Teach White Children and Teens How to Undo Racism and White Supremacy

Time and again we read that white children are not taught about race and racial injustice with the same frequency or at the same early age as their peers of color. Parents of white children often struggle to work conversations about race "naturally" into the flow of the day, believing that race, like sexuality or body development is a topic that necessitates a "big talk" in a time carved out from the flow of normal life. One of the easiest ways to do this is to have books around that prompt conversation and answer questions. Reading "diverse" books and cross-culturally is a great place to start. We also believe that one of the best ways to raise healthy, race-concious white children is to talk to them early and often about racial injustice and racial difference in the course of your daily family life.  We recommend the following books for all families, but especially for parents of white children who may be struggling to talk about racial injustice with their kids and teens. We intentionally only featured a handful of "history" books and did not include the many wonderful biographies and histories of movement leaders because, though we carry those books in our store, too often discussions of racial justice and racism focus on the past, on the Civil Rights Movement in isolation or on individual heroes. Change begins now, with white people, in this present moment. We hope this gives you a few ideas for starting places. As always, we encourage you to browse our store in person or buy online at www.charisbooksandmore.com.   

 

Not My Idea: A Book about Whiteness (Ordinary Terrible Things) By Anastasia Higginbotham, Anastasia Higginbotham (Illustrator) Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781948340403
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Published: Dottir Press - November 17th, 2020

Featuring brand-new activity pages and additional learning material, the paperback edition of Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness is a picture book about racism and racial justice, inviting white children and parents to become curious about racism, accept that it's real, and cultivate justice.


Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You: A Remix of the National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning By Jason Reynolds, Ibram X. Kendi Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780316453691
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Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - March 10th, 2020

The crucial, empowering, #1 New York Times bestselling 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.


Stamped (For Kids): Racism, Antiracism, and You By Jason Reynolds, Ibram X. Kendi, Sonja Cherry-Paul (Adapted by), Rachelle Baker (Illustrator) Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780316167581
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Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - May 11th, 2021

THE #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

This chapter book edition of the groundbreaking #1 bestseller by luminaries Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds is an essential introduction to the history of racism and antiracism in America

 
RACE. Uh-oh.


Antiracist Baby Board Book By Ibram X. Kendi, Ashley Lukashevsky (Illustrator) Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780593110416
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Published: Kokila - June 16th, 2020

A #1 New York Times Bestseller!

From the National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning and How to Be an Antiracist comes a fresh new board book that empowers parents and children to uproot racism in our society and in ourselves.


Our Skin: A First Conversation About Race (First Conversations) By Megan Madison, Jessica Ralli, Isabel Roxas (Illustrator) Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780593382639
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Published: Rise x Penguin Workshop - March 16th, 2021

Based on the research that race, gender, consent, and body positivity should be discussed with toddlers on up, this read-aloud board book series offers adults the opportunity to begin important conversations with young children in an informed, safe, and supported way.


Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre By Carole Boston Weatherford, Floyd Cooper (Illustrator) Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781541581203
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Published: Carolrhoda Books (R) - February 2nd, 2021

Longlisted for the National Book Award

A Kirkus Prize Finalist

A Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Book

A must-have--Booklist (starred review)


This Book Is Anti-Racist: 20 Lessons on How to Wake Up, Take Action, and Do The Work (Empower the Future #1) By Tiffany Jewell, Aurelia Durand (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Tiffany Jewell, Aurelia Durand (Illustrator)
$14.99
ISBN: 9780711245211
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Published: Frances Lincoln Children's Books - January 7th, 2020

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Recommended by Oprah's Book Club, ESSENCE, We Need Diverse Books, ellentube, Brit + Co, PureWow, Teen Vogue, Time, New York, USA TODAY, and TODAY.com

Also available: This Book Is Anti-Racist Journal, a guided journal with more than 50 activities to support your anti-racism journey


The Talk: Conversations about Race, Love & Truth By Wade Hudson (Editor), Cheryl Willis Hudson (Editor) Cover Image
By Wade Hudson (Editor), Cheryl Willis Hudson (Editor)
$7.99
ISBN: 9780593121641
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Published: Yearling - June 1st, 2021

Thirty diverse, award-winning authors and illustrators invite you into their homes to witness the conversations they have with their children about race in America today in this powerful call-to-action that invites all families to be anti-racists and advocates for change.


We Rise, We Resist, We Raise Our Voices By Wade Hudson (Editor), Cheryl Willis Hudson (Editor) Cover Image
By Wade Hudson (Editor), Cheryl Willis Hudson (Editor)
$10.99
ISBN: 9780525580454
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Published: Yearling - December 31st, 2019

Fifty of the foremost diverse children's authors and illustrators--including Jason Reynolds, Jacqueline Woodson, and Kwame Alexander--share answers to the question, "In this divisive world, what shall we tell our children?" in this beautiful, full-color keepsake collection, published in partnership with Just Us Books.


We Are Not Yet Equal: Understanding Our Racial Divide By Carol Anderson, Tonya Bolden Cover Image
$10.99
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9781547602520
Published: Bloomsbury Children's Books - October 29th, 2019

This young adult adaptation of the New York Times bestselling White Rage is essential antiracist reading for teens.

An NAACP Image Award finalist

A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year
A NYPL Best Book for Teens


A is for Activist By Innosanto Nagara Cover Image
$11.95
ISBN: 9781609805395
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Published: Triangle Square - November 19th, 2013

“Reading it is almost like reading Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States, but for two-year olds—full of pictures and rhymes and a little cat to find on every page that will delight the curious toddler and parents alike.”—Occupy Wall Street
 


The Power Book: What is it, Who Has it, and Why? By Roxane Gay (Foreword by), Claire Saunders, Georgia Amson-Bradshaw, Minna Salami, Mik Scarlet, Hazel Songhurst, Joelle Avelino (Illustrator) Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781782409274
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Published: Ivy Kids - October 1st, 2019

With this inspiring and brightly illustrated guide to power, learn about the different types of power, what it means to have power, and what you can do with your own power to create positive change in the world, no matter who or how old you are.

What makes you the boss of me? What makes a king a king, or a queen a queen?


Dig By A.S. King Cover Image
$12.99
ISBN: 9781101994931
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Published: Penguin Books - June 30th, 2020

Winner of the Michael L. Printz Medal


Let's Talk About Race By Julius Lester, Karen Barbour (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Julius Lester, Karen Barbour (Illustrator)
$7.99
ISBN: 9780064462266
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Published: HarperCollins - December 23rd, 2008

"This wonderful book should be a first choice for all collections and is strongly recommended as a springboard for discussions about differences.” —School Library Journal (starred review)


The Skin I'm In: A First Look at Racism (A First Look at…Series) By Lesley Harker (Illustrator), Pat Thomas Cover Image
By Lesley Harker (Illustrator), Pat Thomas
$8.99
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780764124594
Published: Sourcebooks Explore - March 1st, 2003

Racial discrimination is cruel--and especially so to younger children. This title encourages kids to accept and be comfortable with differences of skin color and other racial characteristics among their friends and in themselves. A First Look At... is an easy-to-understand series of books for younger children.


Skin Again By bell hooks, Chris Raschka (Illustrator), Chris Raschka (Cover design or artwork by) Cover Image
By bell hooks, Chris Raschka (Illustrator), Chris Raschka (Cover design or artwork by)
$13.99
ISBN: 9781484799239
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Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - June 6th, 2017

From legendary author and critic bell hooks and multi-Caldecott Medalist Chris Raschka comes a new way to talk about race and identity that will appeal to parents of the youngest readers.
The skin I'm in is just a covering. It cannot tell my story. If you want to know who I am, you have got to come inside and open your heart way wide.


The Colors of Us By Karen Katz, Karen Katz (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Karen Katz, Karen Katz (Illustrator)
$7.99
ISBN: 9780805071634
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Published: Square Fish - October 1st, 2002

A positive and affirming look at skin color, from an artist's perspective.

Seven-year-old Lena is going to paint a picture of herself. She wants to use brown paint for her skin. But when she and her mother take a walk through the neighborhood, Lena learns that brown comes in many different shades.


Brick by Brick By Giuliano Ferri, Giuliano Ferri (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Giuliano Ferri, Giuliano Ferri (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9789888341184
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Published: mineditionUS - June 1st, 2016

A little mouse innocently plucks a flower from an old wall when a brick comes loose, and he can see through it for the first time. He and the other animals gradually and resolutely remove more and more bricks, until at last they can see another group of animals.


The essential resource for 20 years


The Skin You Live In By Michael Tyler, David Lee Csicsko (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Michael Tyler, David Lee Csicsko (Illustrator)
$15.95
ISBN: 9780975958001
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Published: Chicago Children's Museum - April 1st, 2005

With the ease and simplicity of a nursery rhyme, this lively story delivers an important message of social acceptance to young readers. Themes associated with child development and social harmony, such as friendship, acceptance, self-esteem, and diversity are promoted in simple and straightforward prose.


Shades of People By Shelley Rotner, Sheila M. Kelly Cover Image
$7.99
ISBN: 9780823423057
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Published: Holiday House - June 1st, 2010

Cocoa, tan, rose, and almond—people come in lots of shades, even in the same family.


Amazing Grace By Mary Hoffman, Caroline Binch (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Mary Hoffman, Caroline Binch (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780803710405
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Published: Dial Books - September 2nd, 1991

Grace loves stories, whether they're from books, movies, or the kind her grandmother tells. So when she gets a chance to play a part in Peter Pan, she knows exactly who she wants to be. Remarkable watercolor illustrations give full expression to Grace's high-flying imagination.


An ABC of Equality (Empowering Alphabets #1) By Chana Ginelle Ewing, Paulina Morgan (Illustrator) Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781786037428
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Published: Frances Lincoln Children's Books - September 3rd, 2019

A is for Ability, B is for Belief, C is for Class. The best-selling book An ABC of Equality introduces complicated concepts surrounding social justice to the youngest of children.

All people have the right to be treated fairly, no matter who they are, what they look like, or where they come from.


Who We Are!: All About Being the Same and Being Different (Let's Talk about You and Me) By Robie H. Harris, Nadine Bernard Westcott (Illustrator) Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780763669034
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Published: Candlewick - March 22nd, 2016

New York Times best-selling author Robie H. Harris helps preschoolers understand what makes us who we are — from our height to our hair, from the shade of our skin to our eyesight.


The Case for Loving: The Fight for Interracial Marriage: The Fight for Interracial Marriage By Selina Alko, Sean Qualls (Illustrator), Selina Alko (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Selina Alko, Sean Qualls (Illustrator), Selina Alko (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780545478533
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Published: Arthur A. Levine Books - January 27th, 2015

For most children these days it would come as a great shock to know that before 1967, they could not marry a person of a race different from their own. That was the year that the Supreme Court issued its decision in Loving v. Virginia.
 


Remember: The Journey to School Integration By Toni Morrison Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780618397402
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Published: Clarion Books - May 3rd, 2004

Toni Morrison has collected a treasure chest of archival photographs that depict the historical events surrounding school desegregation. These unforgettable images serve as the inspiration for Ms. Morrison’s text—a fictional account of the dialogue and emotions of the children who lived during the era of “separate but equal” schooling.


Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family's Fight for Desegregation By Duncan Tonatiuh Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781419710544
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Published: Abrams Books for Young Readers - May 6th, 2014

Seven years before Brown v. Board of Education, the Mendez family fought to end segregation in California schools. Discover their incredible story in this picture book from award-winning creator Duncan Tonatiuh

A Pura Belpré Illustrator Honor Book and Robert F.


Have I Ever Told You Black Lives Matter By Shani King, Bobby C. Martin, Jr (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Shani King, Bobby C. Martin, Jr (Illustrator)
$17.95
ISBN: 9780884488897
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Published: Tilbury House Publishers - January 19th, 2021

Booklist Star

A tender and powerful affirmation that Black lives have always mattered.

Black lives matter. That message would be self-evident in a just world, but in this world and this America, all children need to hear it again and again, and not just to hear it but to feel and know it.


What We Believe: A Black Lives Matter Principles Activity Book By Laleña Garcia, Caryn Davidson (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Laleña Garcia, Caryn Davidson (Illustrator)
$10.95
ISBN: 9781643794778
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Published: Lee & Low Books - October 27th, 2020

This powerful activity book will engage hands, hearts, and minds as it introduces children to the guiding principles of the Black Lives Matter movement.


When They Call You a Terrorist (Young Adult Edition): A Story of Black Lives Matter and the Power to Change the World By Patrisse Cullors, asha bandele, Benee Knauer (Adapted by) Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9781250194985
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Published: Wednesday Books - September 29th, 2020

Patrisse Khan-Cullors' and asha bandele's instant New York Times bestseller, When They Call You a Terrorist is now adapted for the YA audience with photos and journal entries!

A movement that started with a hashtag--#BlackLivesMatter--on Twitter spread across the nation and then across the world.


Helping Teens Stop Violence, Build Community, and Stand for Justice By Allan Creighton, Paul Kivel Cover Image
$22.95
ISBN: 9780897935685
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Published: Hunter House Publishers - July 5th, 2011

Helping Teens Stop Violence, Build Community, and Stand for Justice is a guide for adults who work with young people ages ten and up on issues related to youth leadership and social justice. It is also a training manual for adults who want to become effective allies to young people and develop the skills needed so that they can facilitate community building among youth.


Say Her Name By Zetta Elliott, Loveis Wise (Illustrator), Loveis Wise (Cover design or artwork by) Cover Image
By Zetta Elliott, Loveis Wise (Illustrator), Loveis Wise (Cover design or artwork by)
$18.99
ISBN: 9781368045247
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Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - January 14th, 2020

Inspired by the #SayHerName campaign launched by the African American Policy Forum, these poems pay tribute to victims of police brutality as well as the activists insisting that Black Lives Matter. Elliott engages poets from the past two centuries to create a chorus of voices celebrating the creativity, resilience, and courage of Black women and girls.


No Choirboy: Murder, Violence, and Teenagers on Death Row By Susan Kuklin Cover Image
$13.99
ISBN: 9781250044457
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Published: Square Fish - August 12th, 2014

No Choirboy takes readers inside America's prisons and allows inmates sentenced to death as teenagers to speak for themselves. In their own voices—raw and uncensored—they talk about their lives in prison and share their thoughts and feelings about how they ended up there.


Beyond Heroes and Holidays: A Practical Guide to K-12 Anti-Racist, Multicultural Education and Staff Development By Enid Lee (Editor), Deborah Menkart (Editor), Margo Okazawa-Rey (Editor) Cover Image
By Enid Lee (Editor), Deborah Menkart (Editor), Margo Okazawa-Rey (Editor)
$38.50
ISBN: 9781878554178
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Published: Teaching for Change - February 1st, 2007

An incredible, informative, collection of essays, articles, analysis, interviews, primary documents and interactive & interdisciplinary teaching aids on civil rights, movement building, and what it means for all of the inhabitants of the planet.


Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices By Mitali Perkins (Editor), Various Cover Image
By Mitali Perkins (Editor), Various
$8.99
ISBN: 9780763690953
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Published: Candlewick - August 23rd, 2016

Using humor as the common denominator, a multicultural cast of YA authors steps up to the mic to share stories touching on race.


Something Happened in Our Town: A Child's Story about Racial Injustice By Marianne Celano, Marietta Collins, Ann Hazzard Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781433828546
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Published: Magination Press - March 1st, 2018

A Little Free Library Action Book Club Selection

National Parenting Product Award Winner (NAPPA)

Emma and Josh heard that something happened in their town. A Black man was shot by the police.

"Why did the police shoot that man?"

"Can police go to jail?"


From a Whisper to a Rallying Cry: The Killing of Vincent Chin and the Trial that Galvanized the Asian American Movement By Paula Yoo Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781324002871
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Published: Norton Young Readers - April 20th, 2021

Winner of the 2021 Boston Globe Horn Book Award for Nonfiction

Longlisted for the 2021 National Book Award for Young People's Literature

Finalist for the 2022 YALSA Award for Excellence in Young Adult Nonfiction

An NPR Best Book of 2021

A Washington Post Best Children's Book of 2021

A Time Young Adult Best Book of 2021


We Are Still Here!: Native American Truths Everyone Should Know By Traci Sorell, Frane Lessac (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Traci Sorell, Frane Lessac (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781623541927
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Published: Charlesbridge - April 20th, 2021

A 2022 American Indian Youth Literature Picture Book Honor Book
A 2022 Robert F. Sibert Honor Book

Twelve Native American kids present historical and contemporary laws, policies, struggles, and victories in Native life, each with a powerful refrain: We are still here!


White Rose By Kip Wilson Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9780358376699
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Published: Versify - January 12th, 2021

“In a searing indictment of silent complicity, White Rose shines a light on one remarkable young woman’s insistence on the power of truth, no matter the cost. A timely call to resistance.” – Joy McCullough, author of Blood Water Paint

White Rose is a resonant testament to courage.


Resist: 40 Profiles of Ordinary People Who Rose Up Against Tyranny and Injustice By Veronica Chambers, Paul Ryding (Illustrator), Cory Booker (Foreword by) Cover Image
By Veronica Chambers, Paul Ryding (Illustrator), Cory Booker (Foreword by)
$7.99
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780062796264
Published: HarperCollins - August 18th, 2020

A perfect tool for young readers as they grow into the leaders of tomorrow, Veronica Chambers’s inspiring collection of profiles—along with Senator Cory Booker’s stirring foreword—will inspire readers of all ages to stand up for what’s right.

You may only be one person, but you have the power to change the world.


The Arabic Quilt: An Immigrant Story By Aya Khalil, Anait Semirdzhyan (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Aya Khalil, Anait Semirdzhyan (Illustrator)
$17.95
ISBN: 9780884487548
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Published: Tilbury House Publishers - February 18th, 2020

2021 ARAB AMERICAN CHILDREN'S BOOK AWARD WINNER

Children's Africana Book Award (CABA) 2021 Honor Book

NCSS 2021 Notable Social Studies Book


The Hate U Give By Angie Thomas, Amandla Stenberg (Foreword by) Cover Image
By Angie Thomas, Amandla Stenberg (Foreword by)
$18.99
ISBN: 9780062498533
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Published: Balzer + Bray - February 28th, 2017

8 starred reviews ∙ Goodreads Choice Awards Best of the Best  ∙  William C. Morris Award Winner ∙ National Book Award Longlist ∙ Printz Honor Book ∙ Coretta Scott King Honor Book ∙ #1 New York Times Bestseller!

"Absolutely riveting!" —Jason Reynolds


Dear Martin By Nic Stone Cover Image
$9.99
ISBN: 9781101939529
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Published: Ember - September 4th, 2018

"Powerful, wrenching.” –JOHN GREEN, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Turtles All the Way Down

"Raw and gripping." –JASON REYNOLDS, New York Times bestselling coauthor of All American Boys


I'm Not Dying with You Tonight By Kimberly Jones, Gilly Segal Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781492678892
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Published: Sourcebooks Fire - August 6th, 2019

The New York Times Bestseller!

"An absolute page turner, I'm Not Dying with You Tonight is a compelling and powerful novel that is sure to make an impact. " —Angie Thomas, New York Times bestselling author of The Hate U Give


Hands Up! By Breanna J. McDaniel, Shane W. Evans (Illustrator) Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780593326640
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Published: Puffin Books - December 15th, 2020

This triumphant picture book celebrates Black joy by reclaiming a charged phrase and showing readers how resistance can be part of their everyday lives.


The Wedding Portrait By Innosanto Nagara Cover Image
$17.95
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9781609808020
Published: Triangle Square - October 17th, 2017

The Wedding Portrait is an essential book for kids about standing up for what's right. Here are stories of direct action from around the world that are bookended by the author's wedding story. He and his bride led their wedding party to a  protest, and were captured in a photo by the local newspaper kissing in front of a line of police just before being arrested.


Where Are You From? By Yamile Saied Méndez, Jaime Kim (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Yamile Saied Méndez, Jaime Kim (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062839930
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Published: HarperCollins - June 4th, 2019

This resonant and award-winning picture book tells the story of one girl who constantly gets asked a simple question that doesn’t have a simple answer. A great conversation starter in the home or classroom—a book to share, in the spirit of I Am Enough by Grace Byers and Keturah A. Bobo.


Can I Touch Your Hair?: Poems of Race, Mistakes, and Friendship By Irene Latham, Charles Waters, Sean Qualls (Illustrator) Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781512404425
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Published: Carolrhoda Books (R) - January 1st, 2018

Two poets, one white and one black, explore race and childhood in this must-have collection tailored to provoke thought and conversation.


When a Bully is President: Truth and Creativity for Oppressive Times By Maya Christina Gonzalez Cover Image
$16.45
ISBN: 9781945289088
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Published: Reflection Press - September 4th, 2017

Self-Care for Kids This is not your usual kid's book This book is a call to BE, to step forward and LOVE yourself, LOVE your community, know your history and your powerful place in it and strengthen your own creative power This book is a tool to use. I created it because I know you are an important part of our world and your strength matters.