Black Representation Matters: African-American Books in my Daughter’s First Library
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After posting the variety of African American children’s books we’ve already gotten for our daughter on my IG Story, I got a lot of questions asking if I’d made a comprehensive list of the books she has. Therefore, I figured what better way to share the amazing books we’ve collected than to blog about them?
Black representation has always mattered, but now more than ever before. As an author of African American children’s books, I know how important it is for my daughter to see books with characters that look like her. When I was a little girl, I LOVED reading. But, I also know that as content as I was with reading books from Dr. Seuss all the way to Junie B. Jones and Babysitters Club, there were hardly any characters who LOOKED like me in any of them. The closest thing I had were the Addy books from the American Girl collection, and of course, she was a slave. 😩
In light of not being able to have a “traditional” baby shower, we asked our guests to send along a book to grow our daughter’s library in lieu of a greeting card. To make it even more special, they could also sign the inside of the book and write her a special message if they chose to. It was really important for us to add books to her collection that showcased characters who looked like her and the people around her. Aside from having both of my books, Princess for Hire and Princess Twinkle Toes and the Missing Magic Sneakers as the first two books in her library, below are additional books we have that highlight African-American characters.
African American Children’s Books
I Am Enough: by Grace Byers
Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry
Every Little Thing: by Bob and Cedella Marley
The Story of Rap: by Editors of Caterpillar Books
Dream Big, Little One: by Vashti Harrison
Lola at the Library: by Anna McQuinn
I Like Myself: by Karen Beaumont
When God Made You: by Matthew Paul Turner
Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History: by Vashti Harrison
Unicorn Dreams: by Lawrence Gordon
NOTE: I will continue to update this blog post as we grow her library. ☺️📚