Books featuring BIPOC in which race, ethnicity, tribal affiliation, culture, immigration/migration, and/or religious, sacred, or origin stories are central to the storyline. These books explicitly focus on the diverse expressions of human experience, depending on these elements to drive the plot.
"Bindiya in India is the story of a young Indian-American girl's first trip to India for an Indian wedding. Weaving together Hindi and English, the children's illustrated book takes place in the 1990s. Follow Bindiya as she meets her extended family for the first time, celebrates Indian wedding traditions, and creates memories and bonds to last a lifetime." -- publisher
"A fun way to reinforce the idea that it's fun and interesting to eat special foods on Jewish holidays, while also an accessible way to teach non-Jewish kids a bit about Passover
When Noa refuses to swap food from her lunch one day, her friends wonder why. She explains it's because it's Passover. For the rest of the week, she brings Passover foods to school to share with her friends to let them enjoy the holiday fun." -- publisher
"Young Roblay runs through his Somali village practicing for the big race, where only the fastest runners will be declared men. He turns for advice to his grandfather, who tells Roblay of the mighty Shabelle River, which is strong and swift like a cheetah. Roblay must capture that spirit if he is to finish among the winners of the race and become a man. Inspired by her father’s storytelling, Khadra Mohammed joins Karen Lynn Williams in retelling this Somali coming-of-age tale, beautifully illustrated by artist Julia Cairns. The story of a proud people who once lived together peacefully and drew wisdom from the animals, it is sure to generate enthusiastic discussion in the classroom. An appendix provides further information on the cheetah—the fastest land animal on earth and now an endangered species." -- publisher
"In this #OwnVoices book inspired by the author’s hometown of Chennai, India, a girl explores the vibrant rainbow of delights in a southern Indian street market as she searches for a gift for her amma (mother). Endnotes explain all the items on sale and introduce readers to markets around the world." -- publisher
"From award-winning author Zetta Elliott and rising star illustrator Noa Denmon comes a beautiful #OwnVoices poetic picture book about a brown child discovering and accepting their emotional landscape.
In this powerful, affirming poem by award-winning author Zetta Elliott, a Black child explores his shifting emotions throughout the year. Summertime is filled with joy—skateboarding and playing basketball—until his community is deeply wounded by a police shooting. As fall turns to winter and then spring, fear grows into anger, then pride and peace.
In her stunning debut, illustrator Noa Denmon articulates the depth and nuances of a child’s experiences following a police shooting—through grief and protests, healing and community—with washes of color as vibrant as his words.
Here is a groundbreaking narrative that can help all readers—children and adults alike—talk about the feelings hiding deep inside each of us." -- publisher
"A story about a young girl celebrating the Moroccan Jewish holiday of Mimouna with a new Muslim friend.
It’s Mimouna — the Moroccan Jewish holiday that marks the end of Passover, and when blessings are given for a year of prosperity and good luck. Miriam wants to help her mother make the sweet moufleta pancakes they always eat at their Mimouna party, but after not eating doughy treats for the week of Passover, they don’t have any flour in the house! So, Miriam’s mother takes her to visit their Muslim neighbors, who share their flour. The women drink tea together, and Miriam makes friends with a young girl named Jasmine. Miriam almost drops the bag of flour when she and Jasmine go to fetch it from the storeroom — but luckily Jasmine is there to catch it! Jasmine and her family then join Miriam’s family and friends to celebrate Mimouna.
This sweet story of friendship and shared customs will introduce North American readers to the Mimouna holiday. The book concludes with an author’s note and a recipe for making moufleta, the sweet, paper-thin pancakes featured in the story, so that readers can enjoy, too." -- publisher
"Three accordions, two grandpas, one family!
When both grandpas, Abuelo and Opa, visit at the same time, they can’t understand each other’s language and there is a lot of silence. The grandson’s clever thinking helps find a way for everyone to share the day together as two cultures become one family. This unique book includes a bonus fold-out and a note from the author sharing the true story of his own family." -- publisher
"African is a children's book featuring lyrics by Peter Tosh and illustrations by Jamaican artist Rachel Moss. The song "African" by Peter Tosh was originally released in 1977 on his second solo record, Equal Rights. He wrote the song during a time of civil unrest in Jamaica as a reminder to all black people that they were part of the same community. The album is considered one of the most influential reggae works of all time." -- publisher
"Sunday morning was the only time I was able to dress up, wear perfume, jewelry, and my favorite blue dress to go to church with my mom. As a kid, I was always so excited to get all dressed up in my “Sunday best.” The most important accessory is always a smile and a grateful heart." -- publisher