The following is a selective list of African-American interest books for young readers; compiled from publisher responses to our October PW Call for Information, these titles are publishing between September 2013 and March 2014. For a list of African-American interest books for adults, click here.
The Girl from the Tar Paper School: Barbara Rose Johns and the Advent of the Civil Rights Movement (Jan., $19.95) by Teri Kanefield uses family photos and archival documents to relate the story of the teenager who let the first public protest to demand racial equality in the U.S.
Searching for Sarah Rector: The Richest Black Girl in America (Jan., $21.95) by Tonya Bolden spotlights the girl who lived during the creation of Indian Territory, the making of Oklahoma, and the establishment of black towns and oil-rich boomtowns.
AKASHIC / BLACK SHEEP
Game World (Feb., $18.95, paper $11.95) by C.J. Farley enters a video game turned reality, with giant spiders, malevolent hummingbirds, a not-quite-yellow-brick road, and preteen children learning how to be heroes.
Hostage Three (Nov., $17.99) by Nick Lake. A teen falls in love with one of the Somali pirates who kidnaps her.
Africa Is My Home: A Child of the Amistad (Oct., $17.99) by Monica Edinger, illus. by Robert Byrd. Inspired by a true account, the story of a child who arrives in America on the slave ship Amistad – and eventually makes her way home to Africa.
Willow (Feb., $16.99) by Tonya Cherie Hegamin. In 1848, an educated slave girl faces an inconceivable choice – between bondage and freedom, family and love.
The Harlem Renaissance: An Interactive History Adventure (Sept., paper $6.95) by Allison Lassieur allows readers to choose the sequence of events from the early 1900s as the Harlem Renaissance awakens people to a wealth of African-American arts and culture.
A Civil War Timeline (Feb., paper $8.95) by Stephanie Fitzgerald covers the chronology of major events of the Civil War, in timeline format.
Diary of Charlotte Forten: A Free Black Girl Before the Civil War (Feb., paper $7.95) by Charlotte Forten presents excerpts from the diary of Charlotte Forten, a free African-American teenager who lived in Massachusetts before the Civil War.
Hey, Charleston! The True Story of the Jenkins Orphanage Band (Nov., $16.95) by Anne Rockwell, illus. by Colin Bootman. A former slave starts a band with donated used instruments and helps launch the music known as jazz.
Mumbet’s Declaration of Independence (Feb., $16.95) by Gretchen Woelfle, illus. by Alix Delinois, introduces Mumbet, a Massachusetts slave who successfully used the new Massachusetts Constitution to make a legal case that she should be free.
The Cart That Carried Martin (Nov., $16.95) by Eve Bunting, illus. by Don Tate, describes the day that the body of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was carried to rest through the streets of Atlanta on a simple cart pulled by two mules.
Under the Freedom Tree (Jan., $16.95) by Susan VanHecke, illus. by London Ladd, chronicles the building of the first African-American community in the country, in what is now Hampton, Va.
Leo Loves Baby Time (Feb., $9.95) by Anna McQuinn, illus. by Ruth Hearson, describes familiar activities presented in bright colors.
Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker (Jan., $17.99) by Patricia Hruby Powell, illus. by Christian Robinson, portrays the struggles and triumphs of the passionate performer and civil rights advocate.
The Split History of the Civil Rights Movement: A Perspectives Flip Book (Feb., paper $8.95) by Nadia Higgins describes the opposing viewpoints of those supporting and those opposing the U.S. civil rights movement.
You Don’t Know Me Like That (Oct., paper $9.95) by ReShonda Tate Billingsley. Maya Morgan is dishing the dirt as the new host of Rumor Central, and outside of her circle, no secret is safe.
True Story (Dec., paper $9.95) by Ni-Ni Simone. Seven McKnight is faced with a choice between the boyfriend she loves and the ex she never got over.
Real As It Gets (Jan., paper $9.95) by ReShonda Tate Billingsley. Maya Morgan finds that her latest story may be getting too personal.
Beware of Boys (Feb., paper $9.95) by Kelli London. For 16-year-old Charly, stardom gets way too personal when three of the world’s hottest heartthrobs want her to be their dream come true.
We Shall Overcome: The Story of a Song (Dec., $16.99) by Debbie Levy, illus. by Vanessa Brantley-Newton, celebrates the history of the struggle for freedom, as seen through moments when “We Shall Overcome” was sung.
I’m A Pretty Little Black Girl! (Oct., $14.99) by Betty Bynum, illus. by Claire Armstrong-Parod, introduces Mia, who finds that for herself and her friends, “pretty” is expressing yourself through love and good manners and ambition.
He Said, She Said (Nov., $17.99) by Kwame Alexander. Thrown together when they unexpectedly lead a huge social protest, Omar and Claudia find that a little flirting turns to real love.
Fake ID (Jan., $17.99) by Lamar Giles. Nick Pearson is hiding in plain sight–out of necessity–but can he keep it up when his friend Eli turns up murdered?
Dog Days: The Carver Chronicles, Book One (Dec., $14.99) by Karen English, illus. by Laura Freeman. Gavin’s the new kid at his elementary school, and has to prove all over again that he’s cool.
Cy in Chains (Dec., $16.99) by David L. Dudley. A 13-year-old boy in rural Georgia becomes a brutalized chain gang laborer – and decides that a chance at freedom is worth any risk.
MACMILLAN / FEIWEL AND FRIENDS
A Medal for Leroy (Jan., $16.99) by Michael Morpurgo. A boy tries to get his late grandfather, a war hero, the recognition he deserves.
MACMILLAN / ROARING BROOK PRESS
The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny and The Fight for Civil Rights (Jan., $19.99) by Steve Sheinkin looks at those black men and women who gave their lives in service of a country where they lacked the most basic rights.
The Other Side of Free (Oct., $16.95) by Krista Russell. In 1739, 14-year-old Jem learns the true meaning of freedom when he joins fellow former slaves escaping south to St. Augustine.
PENGUIN / GROSSET & DUNLAP
What Was the Underground Railroad? (Dec., paper $5.99) by Yona Zeldis McDonough, illus. by Lauren Mortimer and James Bennett, includes real stories about "passengers" on the "Railroad," chronicles slaves' close calls with bounty hunters, and what they sacrificed for freedom.
Who Is Nelson Mandela? (Dec., paper $4.99) by Meg Belviso and Pamela D. Pollack, illus. by Stephen Marchesi. As a child he dreamt of changing South Africa; as a man he changed the world.
PENGUIN / NANCY PAULSEN BOOKS
Old Mikamba Had a Farm (Oct., $17.99) by Rachel Isadora uses a version of “Old MacDonald” to introduce children to a menagerie of African animals and their sounds.
The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond (Jan., $16.99) by Brenda Woods. A girl finally meets the African-American side of her family.
PENGUIN / DIAL
How I Discovered Poetry (Jan., $17.99) by Marilyn Nelson, illus. by Hadley Hooper, tells the story of her development as an artist and young woman through 50 poems.
PENGUIN / PHILOMEL
A Dance Like Starlight: One Ballerina’s Dream (Jan., $16.99) by Kristy Dempsey, illus. by Floyd Cooper, introduces Janet Collins, the first African-American prima ballerina.
The Soccer Fence: A Story of Friendship, Hope, and Apartheid in South Africa (Mar., $16.99) by Phil Bildner, illus. by Jesse Joshua Watson, relives how the Bafana Bafana national soccer team won the African Cup of Nations after apartheid ended.
PENGUIN / PUTNAM
The Sittin’ Up (Jan., $16.99) by Shelia P. Moses. When Bean's adopted grandfather and the last slave man around, dies in the summer of 1940, Bean and his very best friend Pole are some kind of hurt.
PENGUIN / VIKING
Brotherhood (Sept., $17.99) by Anne Westwick provides a glimpse into the social and political upheaval of the time with a family caught in the period of Reconstruction.
EllRay Jakes and the Beanstalk (Sept., $14.99) by Sally Warner, illus. by Brian Biggs. EllRay, the shortest kid in his class, can always count on his best friends Kevin and Corey – until lately when Kevin has been skateboarding with the meanest boy in class.
EllRay Jakes Is Magic (Mar., $14.99) by Sally Warner, illus. by Brian Biggs. EllRay begins to realize that he does have talent and brains, after all when he must enter the school talent show.
As Good as Anybody (Dec., paper $7.99) by Richard Michelson, illus. by Raúl Colón, recalls the friendship between two major civil rights leaders, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Abraham Joshua Heschel.
Bud, Not Buddy (Dec., $6.99) by Christopher Paul Curtis hits the high notes of jazz and sounds the deeper tones of the Great Depression.
The Mighty Miss Malone (Dec., $7.99) by Christopher Paul Curtis introduces Deza, a girl Bud met at a Depression-era Hooverville.
RANDOM HOUSE / KNOPF
Cause (Jan., paper $11.99) by Tonya Bolden looks at the time after the destruction of the Civil War and the assassination of President Lincoln.
READERS TO EATERS
Farmer Will Allen and the Growing Table (Oct., $17.95) by Jacqueline Briggs Martin, illus. by Eric-Shabazz Larkin, recalls the basketball star, urban farmer, and MacArthur “genius” who grows a community through food in Milwaukee.
Stat #4: Schooled (Sept., paper $5.99) by Amar’e Stoudemire. Eleven-year-old Amar’e must deal with helping his team in a different way than he’s used to.
Stat #5: Most Valuable (Jan., paper $5.99) by Amar’e Stoudemire. Young Amar’e discovers that planning a tournament is a lot more work than playing in one.
Invasion (Oct., $17.99) by Walter Dean Myers follows two boys on the front lines of the Normandy invasion of World War II.
Seeing Red (Oct., $16.99) by Kathryn Erskine. Red questions his family’s legacy after discovering the injustices that have been happening in his town since before he was born.
Under the Same Sun (Jan., $17.99) by Sharon Robinson, illus. by AG Ford. The daughter of baseball great Jackie Robinson shares the joys and pains of a family living on two continents.
Threatened (Mar., $17.99) by Eliot Schrefer. An African boy living on the streets escapes his jailer by heading into the forest with a scientist who is not entirely what he seems.
SCHOLASTIC / BLUE SKY
Zane and the Hurricane (Mar., $16.99) by Rodman Philbrick follows a 12-year-old mixed-race boy who is visiting a relative in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hits.
SCHOLASTIC / PUSH
Bronxwood (Nov., $9.99) by Coe Booth. Tyrell’s father is just out of jail, and Tyrell doesn’t know how to deal with that.
SIMON & SCHUSTER / ATHENEUM
Can’t Scare Me (Sept., $16.99) by Ashley Bryan delivers a cautionary tale of fearlessness and many-headed monsters.
Malcolm Little (Jan., $17.99) by Ilyasah Shabazz, illus. by AG Ford. Before Malcolm X grew to be one of America’s most influential figures, he was a boy named Malcolm Little.
When I Was the Greatest (Jan,. $17.99) by Jason Reynolds. In Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, a small misunderstanding can escalate into having a price on your head – even if you’re totally clean.
Panic (Mar., $9.99) by Sharon Draper shows that all it takes is one bad decision for everything to change.
SIMON & SCHUSTER / PAULA WISEMAN BOOKS
Jump Shot (Nov., $16.99) by Tiki Barber and Ronde Barber finds the Barber brothers attempting to succeed on the basketball court.
Extra Innings (Feb., $16.99) by Tiki Barber and Ronde Barber. The Barbers join the baseball team in this adventure.
Please Louise (Mar., $17.99) by Toni Morrison and Slade Morrison, illus. by Shadra Strickland. A library card unlocks a new life for a girl in this picture book about the power of imagination.
ALBERT WHITMAN & CO.
Sugar Hill: Harlem’s Historic Neighborhood (Feb., $16.99) by Carole Boston Weatherford, illus. by R. Gregory Christie, takes a walk through Harlem's Sugar Hill to meet all the people who made this neighborhood legendary.