What is the Diverse BookFinder?
The Diverse BookFinder is a search engine/database for K-3 picture books featuring diverse human characters and a corresponding physical collection of picture books which is housed at the Bates College Ladd Library.
Our core strength and vision lies in translating social science research about the impact of various types of representation into accessible information, which has never been done before. (For example, see our School Library Journal article for a description of the significance of Cross-group books).
Who is Diverse BookFinder for?
Diverse BookFinder is for everyone! But our mission is to help provide access to and information about multicultural picture books for librarians, teachers, parents, caregivers, and publishers.
Are all the books on your website recommended?
No. Our intention is to acquire and make available ALL picture books featuring Indigenous people and people of color published in the U.S. since 2002, including reprints. As we are striving to catalogue a comprehensive collection that allows for many types of analysis, inclusion of a book in the collection DOES NOT EQUAL recommendation. We do provide access to professional reviews of each title and encourage users to visit our related readings page for suggested links for evaluating books for quality/authenticity.
Will you add books about other types of diversity?
This project is funded through grants and continues to be an iterative process. Currently, the work has focused on racial/cultural diversity and features books with human characters of color. In future phases with additional grant support, we look forward to expanding the focus on other types of diversity (religion, ability, gender identity, LGBTQIA).
Do you include books with animal characters?
We focus on human characters because there is mounting evidence that children's social, emotional and educational growth is most influenced when they read books featuring people.
Can I search by publisher?
We do track publisher information but do not have an easy way to extract and share this information at this time. We're working on it though so keep your eyes peeled for additional information about this in the future.
Do you accept book donations?
Yes. Donations can be sent to: Krista Maywalt Aronson, Director, Diverse BookFinder, Bates College, Pettingill Hall, 4 Andrews Road, Lewiston, ME 04240. Please check our inclusion criteria before donating.
How do I get the books on your website?
You can check out any of the books in the Diverse BookFinder from our collection, which is housed at the Bates College Ladd Library. Simply visit your local librarian and ask them how using interlibrary loan.
Will the collection continue to grow?
The collection will continue to grow annually, with books donated by publishers or purchased by the Bates College Ladd Library.
Do you include self-published books?
While we recognize the important contributions of self-published books to the diverse books movement, we do not currently include them in our collection parameters. While we do accept donations of self-published books that meet our other collection criteria, we do not have the capacity to acquire individual titles outside of typical library distributors.
Further questions? Contact us.