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Austin’s favorite book seller Book People has cultivated a list of books for young readers to help parents start having conversations with their children about systemic racism, white privilege, and activism to move toward an antiracist future.
This list focuses on books recommended for ages 0-12, however they also posted recommended reading for teens here.
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Here are just a few selections from the list.
“The Day You Begin”
National Book Award winner Jacqueline Woodson and two-time Pura Belpré Illustrator Award winner Rafael López team up to create a poignant, yet heartening book about finding courage to connect, even when you feel scared and alone.
“What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?: The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan”
Congresswoman Barbara Jordan had a big, bold, confident voice—and she knew how to use it! Learn all about her amazing career in this illuminating and inspiring picture book biography of the lawyer, educator, politician, and civil rights leader.
“The Youngest Marcher: The Story of Audrey Faye Hendricks, a Young Civil Rights Activist”
Meet the youngest known child to be arrested for a civil rights protest in Birmingham, Alabama, 1963. This moving picture book proves you’re never too little to make a difference.
“I Walk with Vanessa: A Story About a Simple Act of Kindness”
This simple yet powerful picture book from a New York Times bestselling husband and wife team tells the story of one girl who inspires a community to stand up to bullying. Inspired by real events, I Walk with Vanessa explores the feelings of helplessness and anger that arise in the wake of seeing a classmate treated badly, and shows how a single act of kindness can lead to an entire community joining in to help.
“Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation”
Almost 10 years before Brown vs. Board of Education, Sylvia Mendez and her parents helped end school segregation in California. An American citizen of Mexican and Puerto Rican heritage who spoke and wrote perfect English, Mendez was denied enrollment to a “Whites only” school. Her parents took action by organizing the Hispanic community and filing a lawsuit in federal district court. Their success eventually brought an end to the era of segregated education in California.
Not all titles on the full list are readily available in-store now, but they are working to get them into your hands as soon as possible. The titles we’ve featured are all on Book People shelves now.