the year i flew away

read along with us! want a copy of your own? summary: This book stressed me out in the best way possible. Main character Gabrielle is given the opportunity to leave her village in Haiti and live with family in the states. All she has to do is stay out of trouble. Now, the reader can…

Baby Young Gifted and Black

English Infant & Up Historical Figures Self-Esteem Own Voices Black Culture & Identity Jamia Wilson & Andrea Pippins Summary: Do I even need to state how adorable this book is? I cannot handle it. I’m sure you’ve seen the brilliant 2018 smash hit by Jamia Wilson & Andrea Pippins with the same name and the…

Mental Health & Body Positivity

English MG & Up Mental health Body positivity Self-esteem Reflection activities See each book Summary: Both of these books are wonderful! They work beautifully together, so I decided to do a double review and talk about the important of mental health, emotional wellbeing, self-esteem, and body positivity. Body Positive by Emily Lauren Dick is a…

Dream Builder: The Story of Architect Philip Freelon

English 6-12 years Historical Figures STEM Architecture Black Culture & Identity Kelly Starling Lyons & Laura Freeman Summary: Philip Freelon was born into a proud and artistic Black family, with connections to the Harlem Renaissance and protest marches. Philip’s other family members followed their artistic visions, and Philip’s grandfather (a painter) helped Philip develop his….

A Gift for Amma: Market Day in India

English 4-8 years Own Voices Chennai, India Family Gifts Meera Sriram & Mariona Cabassa Summary: This book is so bright and cheery, it’s a joy to read! The narrator is a young girl on her way to the colorful market nearby to buy a present for her Amma, and there are so many choices! Wandering…

The Magic in Changing Your Stars

English MG Family Black Culture & Identity Harlem Renaissance Fantasy Time Travel Tap Dancing Leah Henderson Summary: This book is really clever, and I love the idea of time travel that other people remember. Ailey is a talented dancer, but he has an utterly crushing tryout for The Wiz. When Ailey talks with his Grampa…

Farmers Unite! Planting a Protest for Fair Prices

English 6 years and up Activism Social Movements Protest History Agriculture Photography Lindsay H. Metcalf Summary: Reading this book gave me chills. I grew up on a farm in Kansas, but we didn’t grow food (we boarded horses) for five formative years of my childhood. The choice that author Lindsay Metcalf made to have photographs…

Opening the Road: Victor Hugo Green and His Green Book

English 4 years and up Segregation Black Culture & Identity History Safety Historical Figures Keila V. Dawson & Alleanna Harris Summary: First of all, this book is beautifully made. I love the matte book jacket, and the surprise underneath it! Opening the Road not only tells of the events that precipitated the development of the…

A Place Inside of Me: A Poem to Heal the Heart

English 4 years and up Poetry Own Voices Black Lives Matter Social-Emotional Learning Critical Thinking Skills Media Consumption Zetta Elliott & Noa Denmon Summary: This book just received a Caldecott Honor, which is incredibly well-deserved! This poetic story centers around the narrator working through feelings surrounding a police shooting of a young girl, which is…

The Sea in Winter

English MG & Up Indigenous Voices Mental health Depression Athleticism Dance Own Voices Christine Day Summary: The Sea in Winter is Christine Day’s latest, and it’s a lovely novel that broaches topics of mental health, blended families, and adapting to unexpected (and disliked) changes in life. Maisie is a ballerina, and healing from a torn…