What are popular Black Kids Picture Books?

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What are popular Black Kids Picture Books?

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Oct 30, 2012, 7:10 pm


What are the popular African American themed children's picture books? Is it the text or illustrations which makes it popular?

Thank you, Kyra

Oct 31, 2012, 4:50 pm

I don't know of any "popular" books, but I know of some that I have read or own.

There is Nikki Grimes "Dyamonde Daniel" series. She also does poetry, but I am not a big poetry fan in general.

I recently read a young adult book, Zahrah the Windseeker by Nnedi Okorafor. I enjoyed it and plan to read other books by her.

I just realized you wanted PICTURE books, lol. I see what I have at home to recommend.

Oct 31, 2012, 8:38 pm

LibraryThing is good at making lists. You might try this one.

Nov 1, 2012, 11:29 am

The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats was always a favorite of mine. It's a Caldecott Medal book, simple story but Keats was a true artist and the images are just fabulous to look at (in all his books, but that one is most well-known). He was a real pioneer of the multicultural aspect in children's lit, along with the urban setting, and his distinct collage artwork.

I know I've seen plenty of others, but I can't recall any titles, and none of them jump out at me.

Feb 15, 2013, 9:10 am

Here is a list of Keats titles: http://aalbc.it/ejkeats

Feb 15, 2013, 6:08 pm

I don't know that this is specifically a "picture book," but what about the poetry anthology edited by Nikki Giovanni, Hip Hop Speaks to Children? It does have a lot of pictures in it, and it's got the added bonus of coming with a CD of readings.

Aug 9, 2013, 11:19 am

From the Librarything Sustainability Group, there's a picture book you may want to consider. It's about a 14-year-old Malawi youth who brought a source of electricity to his rural family:

The Boy who harnessed the wind

It is an autobiography. Here is the author's blog:


Sep 8, 2014, 4:55 pm

I'd like to bump this thread. I'm looking for picture books for my toddler featuring African-American characters; we've read The Snowy Day and a couple of Keats' other books, but I'd like something a little more recent. Some of his favorites are Please, Baby, Please and Squeak, Rumble, Whomp Whomp Whomp!

Edited: Apr 19, 2015, 6:26 am

>8 lorax: The first picture book that comes to my mind is Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale by John Steptoe, but it not new by any means.

HERE's a list of the Coretta Scott King award winner. The illustrator award is usually a picture book, but not always for toddlers.

HERE's a list that might be helpful from the Carnegie Library.

HERE's a list from Amazon. It's a mixed list of chapter books and picture books.

Apr 20, 2015, 10:26 am

>9 avaland:

Thanks. I'm familiar with the Coretta Scott King award, and we have a few of them, but usually it's not quite what I'm looking for; my kid's two, and what I want is "kids who happen to be black doing kid things", rather than "This is a book that teachers will read to their classes during Black History Month" and the latter seems to be what wins the awards. The Carnegie Library list is more what I'm looking for - we've found a lot of those but not all of them, so thank you.

Apr 20, 2015, 10:32 am

I highly recommend Grandmama's Joy, about a little girl trying to cheer up her grandmother. It's one of my very favorite children's books for the sheer reality of emotions.