African Americans

For centuries, Africans brought to America as slaves and their descendents who were born into slavery were forced to keep their stories alive by telling them aloud. If slaves were caught writing–or teaching others–they were punished by law. Going to school was illegal. This Black History Month (February), in honor of African American storytellers of the past, celebrate today’s black authors whose words create powerful and beautiful literature. At the same time, be sure to take a closer look at the work of black illustrators whose art enhances the printed page. In this column, you’ll find a selection of newly published books and old favorites, written and/or illustrated by black authors and artists. These are only a sampling of titles to share with students. Look in your library for scores of others.

Barack Obama

By Stephen Feinstein
Barack Obama had a childhood full of adventure. He grew up to be a senator and run for U.S. president. This inspiring biography tells the ...
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By Jonah Winter
This is a journey that began in many places. It began in Kansas, home of Barack's mother. It began in Africa, home of Barack's father. It ...
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The Egypt Game

By Zilpha Keatley Snyder
The first time Melanie Ross meets April Hall, she's not sure they'll have anything in common. But she soon discovers that they both love ...
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Charlie Pippin

By Candy Boyd
Also about a family, this story introduces a spunky girl determined to learn why her father is so angry and demanding. Chartreuse "Charlie" ...
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The Well

By Mildred Taylor
The Logan family is glad to share their water when all their neighbors' wells go dry. But ten-year-old David Logan is challenged by ...
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