By: Grace W.
6 Book Suggestions
The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta (YA FIC ATTA, also available on Overdrive)
This book follows Michael, a mixed race, gay teen, as he enters the Drag Society and begins his journey as a drag artist called the Black Flamingo. In this novel, Michael explores the layers of his identity and embraces his uniqueness.
Flygirl by Sherri L. Smith (YA FIC SMITH, also available on Hoopla and Overdrive)
Ida Mae Jones dreams of flying. When World War 2 begins, Ida tries to join the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPS), but they won’t accept her because she is black. This novel tells the story of how Ida pretended to be white to get accepted into the program and follow her dreams, while dealing with the burdens of hiding her racial heritage and denying her family.
American Street by Ibi Aanu Zoboi (YA FIC ZOBOI, also available on Hoopla and Overdrive)
When Fabiola leaves, Haiti she must navigate her new life in Detroit with her cousins after her mother gets detained by U.S. immigration. Once Fabiola begins to gain her footing in her new home, she is faced with a dangerous proposition that makes her realize freedom comes at a cost.
Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Philip M. Hoose (NEWBERRY YA B COLVIN HOO)
Philip Hoose presents an in-depth account of an important civil rights figure in this novel. This book provides details of Colvin’s Montgomery bus boycott and involvement with the landmark court case Browder V. Gayle, which struck down segregation laws in Montgomery.
In the Shadow of Liberty: the Hidden History of Slavery, Four Presidents, and Five Black Lives by Kenneth C. Davis (YA 306.362, also available on Overdrive and Access 360)
This book provides an examination of American slavery through stories from five enslaved people who were considered property of some of the most well-known presidents. These stories help us learn about people who were essential to the birth of the nation, but have traditionally been left out of history books.
Black Enough: Stories of Being Young and Black in America edited by Ibi Aanu Zoboi (ABRAHAM LINCOLN YA FICTION BLACK, also available on Hoopla, Overdrive, and Access 360)
This collection of short stories explores what it’s like to be young and black in America. This book emphasizes that one person’s experiences, reality, and personal identity are different than someone else’s.