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Race & Justice Resources
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The work toward racial justice and the advancement of equity for all can start with a book, an article, a film, or an idea. Therefore, we have curated the following list of resources available to you through our catalog and beyond as your exploration and action around racial injustice moves forward.
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Separated by respective ambitions after falling in love in occupied Nigeria, beautiful Ifemelu experiences triumph and defeat in America while exploring new concepts of race, while Obinze endures an undocumented status in London until the pair is reunited in their homeland 15 years later, where they face the toughest decisions of their lives.
A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn
Presents the history of the United States from the point of view of those who were exploited in the name of American progress.
A CNN contributor, and former law-enforcement himself, offers a personal account of the racism, crimes and color lines that challenge America's law enforcement, sharing insights into high-profile cases, the Black Lives Matter movement and what is needed for change.
cloudLibrary -- E-Book
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
Eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove, an African-American girl in an America whose love for blonde, blue-eyed children can devastate all others, prays for her eyes to turn blue, so that she will be beautiful, people will notice her, and her world will be different.
Eloquent rage: a Black feminist Discovers Her Superpower by Brittany Cooper
A leading young black feminist illuminates how organized anger, friendship and faith can be powerful sources of positive feminist change, explaining how targeted rage has shaped the careers of such African-American notables as Serena Williams, Beyoncé and Michelle Obama.
cloudLibrary -- E-Book | E-Audiobook
hoopla -- E-Audiobook
How We Fight For Our Lives by Saeed Jones
The co-host of BuzzFeed’s AM to DM, award-winning poet and author of Prelude to Bruise documents his coming-of-age as a young, gay, black man in an American South at a crossroads of sex, race and power.
If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin
When a pregnant Tish's boyfriend Fonny, a sculptor, is wrongfully jailed for the rape of a Puerto Rican woman, their families unite to prove the charge false
Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
Living with his grandparents and sister on a Gulf Coast farm, Jojo navigates the challenges of his mother's addictions and his grandmother's cancer before the release of his father from prison prompts a road trip of danger and hope.
Stony Road: reconstruction, white supremacy, and the rise of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates Jr
The NAACP Image Award-winning creator of The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross presents a revisionist chronicle of America's post-Civil War struggle for racial equality and the violent counterrevolution that resubjugated black Americans throughout the 20th century.
Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage, his mother was sold away and he was robbed of all memory of her, but gifted with a mysterious power that saves his life years later when he almost drowns in a river. This strange brush with death forces a new urgency on Hiram's private rebellion, and so begins a journey into the war on slavery. It begins a journey that takes him from the corrupt Deep South to dangerous movements in the North. Even as he's enlisted in the underground war between slavers and the enslaved, Hiram resolves to rescue the family he left behind.
You can't touch my hair and other things I still have to explain by Phoebe Robinson
An essay collection about race, gender, and pop culture from stand-up comedian and WNYC podcaster Phoebe Robinson.
Library on the Go -- E-Book
Prominently featured photos, artwork, and other visual elements will guide young adult readers through this lively, informative exploration of significant protests, sit-ins, and collective acts of resistance throughout US history.
Almost American Girl: An Illustrated Memoir by Robin Ha
Moving abruptly from Seoul to Alabama, Robin, a Korean teen, struggles in a hostile blended home and a new school where she does not speak English before forging unexpected connections in a local comic drawing class.
We Are Not From Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez
Even with the love of family, threats lurk around every corner for Pulga, Chico, and Pequeña. And when those threats become all too real, the trio knows they have no choice but to run: from their country, from their families, from their beloved home. Crossing from Guatemala through Mexico, they follow the route of La Bestia, the perilous train system that might deliver them to a better life -- if they are lucky enough to survive the journey.
The Black Kids by Christina Hammonds Reed
Perfect for fans of The Hate U Give, this unforgettable coming-of-age debut novel explores issues of race, class, and violence through the eyes of a wealthy black teenager whose family gets caught in the vortex of the 1992 Rodney King Riots.
All American Boys by Jason Reynolds
When sixteen-year-old Rashad is mistakenly accused of stealing, classmate Quinn witnesses his brutal beating at the hands of a police officer who happens to be the older brother of his best friend. Told through Rashad and Quinn's alternating viewpoints.
Black Enough: Stories of Being Young and Black in America Edited by Ibi Zoboi
Black Enough is an essential collection of captivating stories about what it’s like to be young and Black in America.
Dark Sky Rising: Reconstruction and the Dawn of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
Henry 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.
cloudLibrary -- E-Audiobook
Dear Martin by Nic Stone
Writing letters to the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., seventeen-year-old college-bound Justyce McAllister struggles to face the reality of race relations today and how they are shaping him.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
After witnessing her friend's death at the hands of a police officer, Starr Carter's life is complicated when the police and a local drug lord try to intimidate her in an effort to learn what happened the night Kahlil died.
I’m Not Dying With You Tonight by Gilly Segal
Told from two viewpoints, Atlanta high school seniors Lena and Campbell, one black, one white, must rely on each other to survive after a football rivalry escalates into a riot.
An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States For Young People by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz
Told from the point of view of Native Americans, challenges the founding myth of the United States and shows how the policies against the indigenous peoples was genocidal and imperialist.
Kid Activists by Robin Stevenson (Ages 9-12)
Across history, activists have worked, marched, and spoken out for equality and justice--and many had moving, relatable childhood stories. Martin Luther King Jr. argued with his dad about whether dancing was a sin. Harvey Milk had a passion for opera. Dolores Huerta was wrongly accused of plagiarizing. Kid activists tell these stories and more through engaging biographies and full-color illustrations on nearly every page.
Malcolm Little: The Boy Who Grew Up To Become Malcolm X by Ilyasah Shabazz (Ages 6-10)
Malcolm X grew to be one of America’s most influential figures. But first, he was a boy named Malcolm Little. Written by his daughter, this inspiring picture book biography celebrates a vision of freedom and justice.
Todos Iguales by Christy Hale (Ages 9-12)
This nonfiction bilingual picture book, written in both English and Spanish, tells the empowering story of The Lemon Grove Incident--a major victory in the battle against school segregation, and a testament to the tenacity of an immigrant community and its fight for equal rights.
All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold (ages Pre-K-7)
Illustrations and simple, rhyming text introduce a school where diversity is celebrated and songs, stories, and talents are shared.
Blended by Sharon Draper (Ages 8-12)
Piano-prodigy Isabella, eleven, whose black father and white mother struggle to share custody, never feels whole, especially as racial tensions affect her school, her parents both become engaged, and she and her stepbrother are stopped by police.
Library on the Go -- E-Audiobook
Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson (ages 4-7)
The author shares her childhood memories and reveals the first sparks that ignited her writing career in free-verse poems about growing up in the North and South.
Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes (Ages 5 - 8)
Celebrates the magnificent feeling that comes from walking out of a barber shop with newly-cut hair.
A Good Kind of Trouble by Lisa Moore Ramee (Ages 8-12)
After attending a powerful protest, Shayla starts wearing an armband to school to support the Black Lives Matter movement, but when the school gives her an ultimatum, she is forced to choose between her education and her identity.
King of the Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes (ages Pre-K - 5)
A confident little boy takes pride in his first day of kindergarten, encouraging new students with a reassuring message about this exciting milestone.
Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson (Ages 6-8)
Under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King, children and teenagers march against segregation in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963.
Little leaders : bold women in black history by Vashti Harrison (Ages 8-12)
Based on her popular Instagram posts, author/illustrator Vashti Harrison shares the stories of 40 bold African American women who shaped history.
New Kid by Jerry Craft (Ages 8-12)
Graphic Novel - Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.
The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson (Ages 8-12)
Spending the summer in Lambert, South Carolina, Candice discovers the letter that sent her grandmother on a treasure hunt, and with her new friend Brandon, sets off to expose the injustice once committed against a local African American family.