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Black Lives Matter: Essential Readings for Adults and Teens

Updated: June 3, 2020

Between the World and Me
Coates, Ta-Nehisi
Call Number: e-Book

Black Is the New White
Mooney, Paul, 1941-
Call Number: 809.25092 M818

The Bluest Eye
Morrison, Toni
Call Number: YA

The Bluest Eye (1970) is the first novel written by Toni Morrison. It is the story of eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove—a black girl in an America whose love for its blond, blue-eyed children can devastate all otherswho prays for her eyes to turn blue: so that she will be beautiful, so that people will look at her, so that her world will be different. This is the story of the nightmare at the heart of her yearning and the tragedy of its fulfillment.

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood
Noah, Trevor
Call Number: 822.092 N739

Chokehold: Policing Black Men
Butler, Paul, 1961-
Call Number: 352.20973 B986

The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America
Rothstein, Richard
Call Number: 301.45096 R847

Dear Martin
Stone, Nic
Call Number: e-Book

Genesis Begins Again
Williams, Alicia
Call Number: YA

The Hate U Give
Thomas, Angie
Call Number: YA

After witnessing her friend's death at the hands of a police officer, Starr Carter's life is complicated when the police and a local drug lord try to intimidate her in an effort to learn what happened the night Kahlil died.

How Not to Get Shot: And Other Advice From White People
Hughley, D. L. 1963-
Call Number: 817 H894-2

How to Be an Antiracist
Kendi, Ibram X
Call Number: 323.1 K33-1

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
Angelou, Maya.
Call Number: e-Book

I'm Not Dying with You Tonight
Jones, Kimberly
Call Number: YA

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
Skloot, Rebecca, 1972-
Call Number: e-Book

Lighting the Fires of Freedom: African American Women in the Civil Rights Movement
Bell, Janet Dewart
Call Number: 323.40973 B433

Long Way Down
Reynolds, Jason
Call Number: e-Book

March: Book One
Lewis, John
Call Number: 323.4092 L674-2

March is popping up all over the place on best graphic novel lists for 2013, and rightfully so. This is the first book in a planned trilogy that tells of the struggle of Congressman John Lewis, his first hand experience of the Jim Crow South, and his experience living through segregation and choosing to fight against it through his participation in key Civil Rights moments, such as the March on Washington and the Selma-Montgomery March. Fantastic assignment book for teachers looking for an engaging document to bring the struggle for racial equality for African Americans to light.

March: Book Three
Lewis, John
Call Number: 323.4092 L674-2 v.3

Winner of the 2017 Michael Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature. U.S. Congressman and civil rights leader John Lewis continues his story in the concluding volume of this graphic novel trilogy, which opens with the bombing of the Birmingham Baptist Church, Freedom Summer and ends with the Voting Rights Act of 1965 being signed into law.

March: Book Two
Lewis, John
Call Number: 323.4092 L674-2 v.2

Congressman John Lewis powerfully recounts his journey in the 1960s' civil rights movement as the chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). The strength of March is the ability of Congressman John Lewis to teach a new generation about the events of the civil rights movement in a way that both entertains and educates.

Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor
Saad, Layla F
Call Number: 323.1 S111

Myers, Walter Dean, 1937-2014.
Call Number: e-Book

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness
Alexander, Michelle.
Call Number: 343.73 A377

One Person, No Vote (YA edition): How Not All Voters Are Treated Equally
Anderson, Carol
Call Number: 324.73 A545-1

Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools
Morris, Monique W., 1972-
Call Number: 371.97 M877

Black girls account for more than one in every three girls arrested in schools, and just under one in every three girls referred to law enforcement. This despite the fact that only about one in every seven female students is black. Monique W. Morris explores the myriad ways that black girls are being unfairly criminalized in schools and allowed to fail and/or fall through the cracks.


Remembering Slavery: African Americans Talk About Their Personal Experiences of Slavery and Emancipation
Call Number: 326.0973 R3865

So You Want to Talk About Race
Oluo, Ijeoma
Call Number: 323.1 O525

Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America
Kendi, Ibram X.
Call Number: e-Book

Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You
Kendi, Ibram X.
Call Number: e-Book

The Underground Railroad
Whitehead, Colson
Call Number: e-Book

The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration
Wilkerson, Isabel.
Call Number: 301.45096 W681

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Wilkerson examines the migration of nearly 6 million African Americans from the South for the North and the West between World War I and the 1970s through the stories of three individuals: Ida Mae Gladney, who left rural Mississippi for Chicago in the 1930s; George Swanson Starling, who set out for Harlem in the 1940s; and Robert Joseph Pershing Foster, who became a Los Angeles physician after leaving Louisiana in the 1950s.

Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria: And Other Conversations About Race
Tatum, Beverly Daniel.
Call Number: 301.45096 T221 2003