I wrote this in my introduction to my newsletter:
I saw this video on Facebook a while back, and it got me thinking. Especially the part where they say that black history begins with slavery and ends with Martin Luther King, Jr. It helped that it came on the heels of the scandal surrounding A Birthday Cake for George Washington. I especially appreciated this post by author Mitali Perkins is definitely worth checking out. Both things together have made me more aware of the importance of diversity in children’s books, and made me more determined to search out more honest portrayals of black life.
I think that’s true, and as a result, I tried to find books that reflected the African American experience but didn’t have anything to do with slavery or civil rights. The three I came up with are these:
Gordon Parks: How the Photographer Captured Black and White America by Carolyn Boston Weatherford, illustrated by Jamey Cristoph
The Magnificent Mya Tibbs: Spirit Week Showdown by Crystal Allen
When I Was the Greatest by Jason Reynolds
A confession: I haven’t read any of these. But I think it’s definitely something I can rectify.
What would you have picked?