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Diversify your bookshelf

By Jen Pace Dickenson

Shelf Life

 

If you follow the New York Times bestseller lists (or am I the only nerd who does that?), you know that books by authors of color have been gaining popularity for weeks, as readers seek to diversify their bookshelves and learn about the history of race in our country. Here are some available in the Polk County Public Libraries’ collection for you to check out.

 

KIDS

The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson.

#2 on the Children’s Picture Books list: A group of school children embrace their differences.

Sulwe by Lupita Nyong’o

#3 on the Children’s Picture Books list: After a magical journey with a shooting star, Sulwe discovers her inner beauty.

Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison

#3 on the Children’s Middle Grade Hardcover list: The biographies of 40 African-American women who made a difference.

Look Both Ways by Jason Reynolds

#7 on the Children’s Middle Grade Hardcover list: A collection of ten stories told within a ten block radius.

 

TEENS

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

#1 on the Young Adult Hardcover list: A 16-year-old girl sees a police officer kill her friend.

Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo

#6 on the Young Adult Hardcover list: Unbeknownst to each other, two sisters meet when their father dies in a plane crash.

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

#9 on the Young Adult Hardcover list: Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut.

ADULTS

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

#1 on the Combined Print & E-Book Fiction list: The lives of twin sisters who run away from a Southern black community at age 16 diverge as one returns and the other takes on a different racial identity, but their fates intertwine.

How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

#3 on the Combined Print & E-Book Nonfiction list: A primer for creating a more just and equitable society through identifying and opposing racism.

The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander

#5 on the Combined Print & E-Book Nonfiction list: A law professor takes aim at the war on drugs, mass incarceration, and their impact on black men.

Jen Pace Dickenson is the youth services librarian for Polk County Public Libraries. For information about the library’s resources, programs, and other services, visit polklibrary.org or call 828-894-8721.