11 Kids Books by Black Authors We Can’t Wait to Read

published Feb 1, 2022
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As the “Tee Tee” to 11 nieces and nephews ranging from one very cuddly infant to independent teenagers, I sometimes struggle with how to bond with each of them in meaningful and impactful ways. One only desires to hear me sing the ABCs over FaceTime, while another is only interested in sci-fi shows with characters that resemble her. Thankfully, I can lean on books to chart a somewhat easier path to connect with my young loved ones both near and far. 

At the start of every new year, Black History Month presents us with an open invitation to explore the extraordinary works of Black authors who are writing and illustrating the books that will shape today’s young minds.

To get you going, we’ve taken some of the guesswork off of your plate and put together a list of some of the best page-turners for a variety of age groups about Black history lessons, empowerment techniques, and even how to process childhood grief. 

History Lessons For Young Children

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“Imagine Life Without African-American Inventors” is a new book that takes children back in time to explore the many inventions like cell phones and street lights, created by Black masterminds, that have become staples in our everyday lives.

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was $17.99

This newly released book tells the true story of Opal Lee, affectionately known as “the Grandmother of Juneteenth.” Kids and parents alike will be inspired by how Opal turned a childhood tragedy into her lifelong mission to make Juneteenth a federally recognized holiday. I love that this story celebrates the importance of freedom for all and that Opal’s dream came true in 2021!

Picture Books 

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In a world where division is prominent, many children, especially multiracial children, need to learn how to love and embrace all parts of who they are. This picture book teaches children how to celebrate different languages, skin and hair types, and cultural traditions. We could all use this book, right?

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was $18.99

This New York Times Bestseller reads like a lyrical poem and I love it! Dig into the beautifully illustrated picture book that encourages parents and children to talk about what makes them special and how to love themselves just as they are.

Managing Childhood Grief 

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Today, kids around the world are curious about where Grandma is or why they haven’t seen their favorite uncle in months. The hard truth that we have to share is that these beloved families are no longer with us. Managing grief as an adult is complex enough, and thankfully this timely book helps grieving children process their pain and learn how to speak openly about it with friends.

Books for Teens & Tweens

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was $16.98

Get ready for a jam-packed read! 17 best-selling Black authors collaborated to share unique stories about the often untold joys of Black boyhood.

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was $18.99

Prepare to explore the life and legacy of former First Lady Michelle Obama. This award-winning memoir — adapted for young readers — takes you back to her days of growing up in the South Side of Chicago and her journey to becoming the woman she is today. Michelle Obama challenges young readers to discover who they are and who they desire to become.

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was $18.98

Get this book for the young one in your world who needs a daily dose of Black Girl Magic. This motivational read is filled with daily reflections, mindfulness practices, and motivational quotes that will leave any young reader empowered year-round.

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was $16.99

Written with middle-grade readers in mind, this humorous and “compulsively readable” chapter book explores the unique challenges experienced by a young girl growing up in a town where no one else looks like her. The story takes a suspenseful turn when a new Black family moves into the area. The only two Black girls forge a new friendship and discover a collection of journals that reveal shocking secrets of the past.

For Audio Learners 

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This five-minute audiobook retells the story of “The Princess and The Pea” — this time the prince and princess fall in love over their shared passion for reading! This audiobook will be the perfect addition to your bedtime routine.

Bonus Book: Cooking & Recipes 

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was $12.95

Let’s head to the South … all the way down to the Mississippi Delta to explore life in the kitchen for young Jelly and her grandmother, as they catch and fry a fish for dinner. This captivating story gives you a peek into the kitchens of Black families and the love and wisdom that is shared while cooking.