While I Was Away

English & Japanese MG & Up Asian-American Experience Japanese-American Own Voices Growing Up Family Language Learning SEL Waka T. Brown summary Waka is a Japanese-American sixth grader in rural Kansas in the 1980’s. At home, her family speaks Japanese almost exclusively, but Waka is behind in reading and writing in kanji. After a few incidents…

Latinitas

English & Spanish MG & Up english Juliet Menéndez summary I couldn’t let Women’s History Month end without featuring this incredible book! First of all, how gorgeous is this cover? I’m kind of obsessed with the limited color palette and over the moon to see how many countries are represented (helpfully with flags by the…

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…

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…

This Book is Anti-Racist Journal

Written & Illustrated by:  Tiffany Jewell & Aurélia Durand For ages: MG & Up Language: English Topics Covered: Historical Figures Sequels Activism Environmental Activism Trailblazers Anti-Racism Journal   Summary: Y’all, this book is FINALLY out in the world tomorrow. I’ve been impatiently awaiting it’s release for months, as soon as I heard it was being published. Anti-Racism…

Root Magic

Written & Illustrated by:  Eden Royce For ages: MG Language: English & some Gullah Topics Covered: History Own Voices Magic Police Harassment   Eden Royce Eden Royce is from Charleston, South Carolina and is a member of the Gullah-Geechee nation. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications and she is the recipient of the…

Amari and the Night Brothers

Written & Illustrated by:  B.B. Alston For ages: MG Language: English Topics Covered: Black Protagonists Women in STEM Fantasy Magic Single Parent Families Bravery Courage   Summary:  Ya’ll, especially after this past summer filled with gross transphobic tweets from JKR, I’ve been on the hunt for a Harry Potter replacement. Let me tell you, I’ve found…