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Our collection of picture books featuring Black and Indigenous Peoples and People of Color (BIPOC) is available to the public.

*Inclusion of a title in the collection DOES NOT EQUAL a recommendation.*

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Montgomery and the Case of the Golden Key

2023

by Kristin Sorra

“In 2008 Chicago, in the Southside community of Washington Park, Montgomery”Monty” Carver had hoped for the best summer ever! Unfortunately, things aren’t going as planned. Monty is struggling to prove to his parents that he’s old enough to be without adult supervision–especially after a very embarrassing incident with a metal detector. Man! So when Monty finds a golden key in Old Lady Jenkins’s sunflowers, he decides he’s going to unravel the key’s mystery all by himself, thank you very much. No parents allowed. Besides, he’s ten years old now, and he’s mastered the perfectly round ‘fro! (It takes a protractor, you see.) Soon Monty’s hunt to determine the origin of the key leads him to discover the rich history–like famous Black jockeys!–of his Chicago community, which has been speculating its future since one of their residents, Barack Obama, is running for president and the Olympics might come to town in 2016. On top of all that speculating, there are rumors going around that a ghost is hanging out behind their apartment building, and that Monty’s elementary school may have to close. So much to solve! Should the Olympics come to Washington Park? What happens if his school closes? Is there really a ghost? And where, oh where, did the key come from anyway? Monty is determined to find out.” — publisher

Centering Culture & Identity

Indigo and Ida

2023

by Heather Murphy Capps

When eighth grader and aspiring journalist Indigo breaks an important story, exposing an unfair school policy, she’s suddenly popular for the first time. The friends who’ve recently drifted away from her want to hang out again. Then Indigo notices that the school’s disciplinary policies seem to be enforced especially harshly with students of color, like her. She wants to keep investigating, but her friends insist she’s imagining things. Meanwhile, Indigo stumbles upon a book by Black journalist and activist Ida B. Wells—with private letters written by Ida tucked inside. As she reads about Ida’s lifelong battle against racism, Indigo realizes she must choose between keeping quiet and fighting for justice.

Any Child/Teen Oppression & Resilience Race/Culture/Identity Concepts

My Selma

2023

by Willie Mae Brown

“A stirring memoir of growing up Black in a town at the epicenter of the fight for freedom, equality, and human rights. Combining family stories of the everyday and the extraordinary as seen through the eyes of her twelve-year-old self, Willie Mae Brown gives readers an unforgettable portrayal of her coming-of-age in a fractured town at the crossroads of history. Selma’s pivotal role in the civil rights movement forms an inescapable backdrop in this collection of stories. In one, Willie Mae takes it upon herself to offer summer babysitting services to a glamorous single white mother—a secret she keeps from her father that unravels with shocking results. In another, Willie Mae reluctantly joins her mother at a church rally, and is forever changed after hearing Martin Luther King Jr. deliver a defiant speech. My Selma! captures the voice and vision of a perspicacious, impetuous, resourceful young person who gives us a loving portrayal of her hometown while also delivering a no-holds-barred indictment of the time and place.” — publisher

Biography/Autobiography Centering Culture & Identity Cross Group Oppression & Resilience Race/Culture/Identity Concepts

Clouds over California

2023

by Karyn Parsons

“My Life as an Ice Cream Sandwich meets One Crazy Summer in this moving and heartfelt novel about how one girl’s family and friendships are turned upside down, just as the world is changing in 1970s Los Angeles—from the author of the highly acclaimed How High the Moon.Stevie’s life is fluctuating rapidly. She’s starting over in a brand new middle school. Quiet and observant, it’s hard for her to make friends. Plus, her mind is too occupied. The tension in her home is building as her parents’ arguments are becoming more frequent. To top it all off, Stevie’s older cousin Naomi is coming to live with the family in an attempt to keep her from a “bad” crowd—The Black Panthers.Stevie agrees to keep Naomi’s secrets. She’s the cool big cousin, after all, and Stevie can’t help but notice the happy, positive effect the Black Panthers are having on Naomi’s confidence and identity—just like how Mom is making decisions for herself, even when Dad disapproves.Stevie feels herself beginning to change as well. But one thing remains the same: she loves both of her parents, and she loves them together. Can her family stay in one piece despite the world shifting around them?”–publisher

Centering Culture & Identity Cross Group

Marie Curious: Undercover Gamer

2022

by Chris Edison

“When Marie’s tech-genius mentor Sterling Vance invests in an eSports tournament, 12-year-old Marie and her three best friends get the chance to compete and travel to China for the tournament. But when they arrive, they soon discover that one of the teams is cheating, and everyone is in a bad mood … and it’s not long before they find themselves acting strangely too. Can Marie discover who’s plotting to bring out the worst in everyone, and stop it before it brings disastrous consequences, for the teams … and the world?” — publisher

Any Child/Teen

The Shadow Sister

2023

by Lily Meade

“Sutton going missing is the worst thing to happen to Casey, to their family. She’s trying to help find her sister, but Casey is furious. And she can’t tell anyone about their argument before Sutton disappeared. Everyone paints a picture of Sutton’s perfection: the popular cheerleader with an entourage of friends, a doting boyfriend, and a limitless future. But Sutton manipulated everyone around her, even stole an heirloom bracelet from Casey. People don’t look for missing Black girls—or half-Black girls—without believing there is an angel to be saved. When Sutton reappears, Casey knows she should be relieved. Except Sutton isn’t the same. She remembers nothing about while she was gone—or anything from her old life, including how she made Casey miserable. There’s something unsettling about the way she wants to spend time with Casey, the way she hums and watches her goldfish swim for hours. What happened to Sutton? The more Casey starts uncovering her sister’s secrets, the more questions she has. Did she really know her sister? Why is no one talking about the other girls who have gone missing in their area? And what will it take to uncover the truth?” — publisher

Centering Culture & Identity Oppression & Resilience

Too Small Tola and the Three Fine Girls

2022

by Atinuke and Onyinye Iwu

“Too Small Tola lives in an apartment with her clever sister, Moji; her big brother, Dapo; and Grandmommy, who is very bossy. In the first of three endearing new adventures, Tola is sized just right to wriggle under the bed and rescue Grandmommy’s prized possession when it goes missing. Her savvy and math skills save the day when Grandmommy gets sick, and when the family can’t afford new clothes, industrious Tola finds a way—with a little help from Grandmommy—to be just as fine as the three fine girls she so greatly admires. Richly patterned black-and-white art and Atinuke’s captivating wit evoke an authentic and close-knit urban community and the vibrant energy of Lagos, Nigeria, through the eyes of a tiny but resolute heroine with something to teach us all.” — publisher

Centering Culture & Identity

Fly

2022

by Brittany J. Thurman and Anna Cunha

“Africa’s grandmother was a double Dutch legend, and Africa knows she can become the same. Her brother scoffs when she signs up for a double Dutch competition, though—how can she hope to compete when she’s never done it before? But Africa has all the tools she needs: memories of her grandmother, her bestie Bianca’s dance moves, her friend Omar’s rhythm, and her classmates’ Mary Mack timing and cartwheels. If Africa can pull everything together to jump some winning moves, she might just fly, but it’s the birthmark in the shape of her name that tells her she’s always been a winner.”–publisher

Any Child/Teen Cross Group

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