Celebrate Black Creators: Share these books by Black authors and illustrators with your community

Browse our collection of books created by Black authors and illustrators including picture books, middle grade, and young adult books. Plus, preview new books coming soon and request digital ARCs on NetGalley!

Take the MacKids
Diversify Your Bookshelf Pledge!

Here at MacKids School and Library, we have big resolutions and our biggest yet is one we’d like to share with you! Each month, we’ll be pledging to take at least one action that will diversify our bookshelf. From finding ways to further support creators to reading more about diverse figures in history who deserve more credit, we hope that our little steps each month will lead to big change.

This February during Black History Month, we’re keeping it simple: Read or share a new book that celebrates Black joy! And be sure to share your bookish discoveries with #MacKidsPledge. Browse our collection below for reading recommendations!

Use the arrows on each row
to browse each category below!

Picture Books – Fiction

Picture Books – Poetry

Picture Books – Nonfiction

Picture Book Biographies

Middle Grade Fiction

Middle Grade Poetry

Middle Grade Nonfiction

Young Adult Fiction

Young Adult Memoir

Young Adult Graphic Novels

Adult Books with Crossover Appeal

More Books Coming Soon!

Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Boy by Emmanuel Acho
Ages 10-14
On Sale May 4, 2021

An engaging children’s book whose aim is opening a dialogue about systemic racism, inspired by Emmanuel Acho’s viral video series “Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man.” Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Boy is an accessible book for children to learn about systemic racism and racist behavior. For the awkward questions white and non-black parents don’t know how to answer, this book is an essential guide to help support communication on how to dismantle racism amongst our youngest generation.

The Burning (Young Readers Edition): Black Wall Street and the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 by Tim Madigan (adapted by Hilary Beard)
Ages 12-18
On Sale May 11, 2021

One of the worst acts of racial violence in American history took place in 1921, when a white mob numbering in the thousands decimated the thriving Black community of Greenwood in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Sensitively adapted for young readers, The Burning recreates Greenwood at the height of its prosperity, explores the currents of hatred, racism, and mistrust between its Black residents and Tulsa’s white population, narrates events leading up to and including Greenwood’s devastation, and documents the subsequent silence that surrounded this tragedy. Delving into history that’s long been pushed aside, this is the true story of Black Wall Street and the Tulsa Race Massacre, with updates that connect the historical significance of the massacre to the ongoing struggle for racial justice in America.

Ace of Spades by Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé
Ages 14-18
On Sale June 1, 2021

Gossip Girl meets Get Out in Ace of Spades, a YA contemporary thriller by debut author Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé about two students, Devon & Chiamaka, and their struggles against an anonymous bully.

Request a digital ARC on NetGalley here!

The Marvelous by Claire Kann
Ages 12-18
On Sale June 8, 2021

From the author of Let’s Talk About Love and If It Makes You Happy, this exuberant YA Novel follows six teens locked together in a mansion, contending for a life-changing cash prize in a competition run by a reclusive heiress.

Darling by K. Ancrum
Ages 14-18
On Sale June 22, 2021

A teen girl finds herself lost on a dangerous adventure in this YA thriller by the acclaimed author of The Wicker King and The Weight of the Stars—reimagining Peter Pan for today’s world. Acclaimed author K. Ancrum has re-envisioned Peter Pan with a central twist that will send all your previous memories of J. M. Barrie’s classic permanently off to Neverland.

Request a digital ARC on NetGalley here!

Me (Moth) by Amber McBride
Ages 12-18
On Sale August 17, 2021

A debut YA novel-in-verse by Amber McBride, Me (Moth) is about a teen girl who is grieving the deaths of her family, and a teen boy who crosses her path.

Request a digital ARC on NetGalley here!

So Many Beginnings: A Little Women Remix (Remixed Classics) by Bethany C. Morrow
Ages 12-18
On Sale September 7, 2021

Four young Black sisters come of age during the American Civil War in So Many Beginnings, a warm and powerful YA remix of the classic novel Little Women, by national bestselling author Bethany C. Morrow.

Request a digital ARC on NetGalley here!

In the Remixed Classics series, authors from diverse backgrounds take different literary classics from centuries past and reinterpret them through their own unique cultural lens. This collection will serve YA readers as both a series of fun, engaging reads as well as a subversive overall look at what our society has deemed “classic” — works that are overwhelmingly cishet, white, and male.

The Legend of Gravity: A Tall Basketball Tale by Charly Palmer
Ages 4-8
On Sale September 28, 2021

Have you ever heard of Gravity? No, not gravity, the centrifugal force pulling us to the Earth. I’m talking about Gravity–the greatest ball player to ever lace up a pair of sneakers. Gravity is the new kid on the Hillside Projects basketball team, the Eagles. He once jumped so high that his teammates went out for ice cream before he came back down. With Gravity on their side, the Eagles feel unstoppable. They’re ready to win “The Best of the Best,” Milwaukee’s biggest and baddest pick-up basketball tournament. But when they face-off with the Flyers in the final round, the winningest team in the whole city, they realize that it may take a little more than Gravity to bring them to victory. Here is a clever, energetic story about the unsung superstars walking among us, complete with vivid art and heartfelt themes of teamwork, loyalty, friendship, and fun. Charly Palmer is a graphic designer, illustrator, and the Africana Book Award and Coretta Scott King-John Steptoe New Talent Award winner for the picture book Mama Africa!

Rise Up! How You Can Join the Fight Against White Supremacy by Crystal Fleming
Ages 12-18
On Sale October 5, 2021

Perfect for fans of Stamped: Remix, this urgent book explores the roots of racism and its legacy in modern day, all while empowering young people with actionable ways they can help foster a better world and become antiracists. Rise Up! is an incredible resource for understanding racial injustice and its continued impact today, connecting the dots between history and the present. By including contemporary examples ripped from headlines and action items that young people can pursue to help create a more inclusive world, sociologist Crystal Fleming shares the knowledge and values that unite antiracists: empathy, respect, and tolerance.

Why? A Conversation about Race by Taye Diggs, illustrated by Shane W. Evans
Ages 3-6
On Sale October 19, 2021

Why? is a question asked by children daily, and in this stirking and timely story, it begins a straightforwardand challenging conversation between children of color and the adults in their lives.

Why? distills the conversations many children and adults are having about race, injustice, and anger in communities throughout our country, and gives them context that young readers can connect with. Heartfelt and deeply piercing illustrations from Shane W. Evans will leave a lasting impact on readers of any age. One that will hopefully lead to more conversations, change, and peace within our own communities and the world.

African Proverbs for All Ages by Nelda LaTeef and Johnnetta Betsch Cole; illustrated by Nelda LaTeef
Ages 4-8
On Sale November 30, 2021

An Oprah Book about the power of proverbs, how they evolve over time, and the wisdom of various cultures in Africa. In African Proverbs for All Ages, noted anthropologist and educator Dr. Johnetta Betsch Cole and award-winning illustrator Nelda La Teef invite children and adults to explore and reflect on complex notions about relationships, identity, society, and the human condition.

Discover more diverse books here!