Tag Archives: #WeNeedDiverseBooks

Staff Pick – El Deafo

Staff Pick – El Deafo

El Deafo

A poignant graphic tale based on the creator’s own experiences with hearing loss follows the adventures of young Cece, who develops “superpowers” to manage the challenges of making friends while wearing a bulky hearing aid that sometimes lets her hear things she shouldn’t. 2015 Newbery Medal Honor Book

Imagine suddenly no longer being able to hear the sounds of anything around you. And then, through the magic of the Phonic Ear (hearing aid), sound reappears, but nothing sounds the same. In her graphic memoir, Cece Bell shares the story of her childhood through El Deafo – a superhero with super hearing powers! She captures both the humorous and difficult parts of growing up with a hearing loss – the challenges of lipreading, the unexpected private conversations heard when the teacher forgets to turn off the microphone outside of the classroom, the complexities of making friends, and so much more – as well as the trials and tribulations that every child goes through.
Deaf or not, every child will find some part of Bell’s experience that they can relate to. This book is a must-read.

Recommended By: Janet Spaulding – Selection Services

 

Smile Drama Sisters Dumbest Idea Ever
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Read Right Now! BLACK HISTORY

Read Right Now! BLACK HISTORY

Click on one of the book jackets to hear a story:

No Mirrors in My Nana's HouseWhite Socks OnlyCatching the MoonHarlemPicture Book of Martin Luther King Jr.

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8th Grade Super Zero

8th Grade Super Zero

8th Grade Superzero

Some kids get nicknames in junior high. Some of those nicknames are even cool. But Reggie McNight’s nickname isn’t cool at all and it is a daily reminder of a very embarrassing event. His nickname? Pukey.

All Reggie wants now is to be invisible, operating under the radar…at least until everyone forgets about “the event.”

How is it then, that Reggie ends up running for class president? Why is he willing to put himself under the scrutiny of his peers again? After volunteering his time at a local homeless shelter, Reggie discovers he cares about something more than restoring his image.  He cares enough to step out of the shadows, after all,  “eighth grade isn’t all there is to life.” Here here. Pukey for President! #Stand4Peace Author: Olugbemisola Rhuday Perkovich

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The Rock and the River

The Rock and the River

The Rock and the River

Teenage brothers Sam and Stick live in Chicago in 1968. Their dad, Rev. Roland Childs, is a respected minister and close friend of Dr. Martin Luther King. Sam’s dad believes passionately in non-violent protest and tirelessly organizes and participates in peaceful protest marches.

Older brother Stick has begun to question Dr. King’s nonviolent philosophy and has been secretly attending meetings of the Black Panthers, an organization whose philosophies are more aggressive than Dr. King’s and are different from what Rev. Child’s preaches and teaches his boys at home. Sam is torn between the ideas of has father and the ideas of his older brother, both of whom he respects and admires.

Everybody can relate to being torn between two choices and being torn between the opinions of two people you respect. When it comes down to figuring out what you think for your own self – that’s when things get hard.

After Dr. King is assassinated and Sam witnesses the brutal beating of a friend by police officers, he becomes more interested in the ideas Stick is learning about at the Black Panther meetings. He begins to attend the meetings also. The conversation the teens have at home, at school, and at these meetings are some of the best parts of the book. They are living the civil rights struggle as they face discrimination every day. Listening to these conversations you get a real sense of each philosophy and why it was chosen by the people committed to it.

This book has a pretty explosive, surprising ending. It isn’t a book for the faint hearted. These are really hard issues and there is violence in the book. It isn’t a happy story with a happy ending because it’s not that kind of story. It wasn’t a happy time. The book is true to the historical period so the violence is part of the story being told.

It is hard for Sam and Stick to stand by watching people suffer the injustices of racism. When Sam finds out Leroy, the leader of the student Black Panthers, sneaks away to talk to Rev. Childs, the same way Sam is sneaking off to the Black Panther meetings, he realizes that these issues are hard for everyone. Sam discovers that standing quiet and firm is different than doing nothing and that you can be agressive, without being violent. A really powerful, emotional book. Don’t miss the author’s note at the end – it is a great discussion of the true events, people and groups that appear in this book. Author: Kekla Magoon Award: Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award for New Talent 2010

Look Inside The Rock and the River

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Staff Pick: Ashley Bryan Words to My Life’s Song

Staff Pick: Ashley Bryan Words to My Life’s Song

Words to My Life's Song

An introduction to the life and career of the writer and artist Ashley Bryan, a three-time winner of the Coretta Scott King Award.

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be an award-winning artist? Words to My Life’s Song is an autobiography that gives a glimpse into the imaginings and memories of three-time Coretta Scott King Award winning illustrator, Ashley Bryan. Mr Bryan frames the book as an afternoon spent walking around his home on an island in Maine. As we wander, Mr. Bryan tells us about his life growing up in the Bronx, going to art school, being in the army, teaching art, and discovering his passion for illustrating books. Along the way, we see a lot of his colorful paintings, stained glass and cut paper creations. This book is a bright, joyful celebration of life and creativity.

Recommended by: Hannah Wheeler – Lawrence

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