Reading List

Change Begins with Learning

Your public library is here to serve and connect our community through education and opportunity.

We have created a reading list for those searching for a deeper understanding of anti-racism and history of race in our culture.


Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela


We know it may be difficult  to understand, talk about, or explain current events related to racial injustice. The books on this list offer a starting place for exploring racism, anti-racism, and the history of race in our culture. All of the titles listed below are available for curbside pick up.


I Have Heard of a Land by Joyce Carol Thomas
I Dream of Trains by Angela Johnson
Knock Knock: My Dad’s Dream for Me by Daniel Beaty
I Love My Hair by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
Crown: An Ode to a Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes
Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed
Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman
Dancing in the Wings by Debbie Allen
Freedom in Congo Square by Carole Boston Weatherford
Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry
The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson
We’re Different, We’re the Same by Bobbi Jane Kates
Leo Can Swim by Anna McQuinn
Cool Cuts by Mechal Renee Roe
Trombone Shorty by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews
Harlem’s Little Blackbird by Renee Watson
The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles
The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander
The Youngest Marcher: The Story of Audrey Faye Hendricks by Cynthia Levinson

Middle Grade

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
Ghost Boys by Jewell Parker Rhodes
Stella by Starlight by Sharon Draper
Monster by Walter Dean Myers
The Season of Styx Malone by Kekla Magoon
New Kid by Jerry Craft
One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia
The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson
Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor
Full Cicada Moon by Marilyn Hilton
The Watsons Go to Birmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis
As Brave As You by Jason Reynolds
Black Brother, Black Brother by Jewell Parker Rhodes
Bud, not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
Day of Tears by Julius Lester
For Black Girls Like Me by Mariama J. Lockington
It All Comes Down To This by Karen English
The Black Lives Matter Movement by Peggy J. Parks
The Bus Ride That Changed History by Pamela Duncan Edwards
Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African American by Kadir Nelson
Rosa by Nikki Giovanni
This Promise of Change: One girl’s story in the fight for school equality by Jo Ann Allen Boyce
What Color is my World? by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar


All American Boys by Jason Reynolds
Ashes by Laurie Halse Anderson
Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
The Crossover by Kwame Alexander
Dear Martin by Nic Stone
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
How it Went Down by Kekla Magoon
I’m Not Dying With You Tonight by Kimberly Jones
Monster by Walter Dean Myers
Swing by Kwame Alexander
Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
On the Come Up by Angie Thomas
Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany Jackson
March by John Lewis
With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo
The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton


Tyler Johnson Was Here by Jay Coles
What We Lose by Zinzi Clemons
We’re Going to Need More Wine by Gabrielle Union
The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
Go Tell It on the Mountain by James Baldwin
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
Hunger by Roxane Gay
Becoming by Michelle Obama
How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
Stamped Ibram X. Kendi
The Black and the Blue: A cop reveals the crimes, racism, and injustice in America’s Law Enforcement by Matthew Horace

The Blood of Emmett Till by Timothy B. Tyson
The Color of Compromise by Jemer Tisby
I Can’t Breathe: A Killing on Bay Street by Matt Taibbi
So You Want to Talk About Race? By Ijoma Oluo
Tears we cannot stop: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
The Third Option: Hope for a Racially Divided Nation by Miles McPherson
Under Our Skin: Getting real about race – and getting free from the fears and frustrations that divide us by Benjamin Watson
When They Call You a Terrorist by Patrisse Khan-Cullors
13 Days In Feguson by Ron Johnson
Locking Up Our Own by James Forman Jr.
The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander

KatieJune Reading List