Black History Month — or, if you prefer, Black Herstory Month — is here, along with my Black History books for girls recommendations. Use these books as a starting point to remember and take pride in how women of color have changed our world.
Nic Blake and the Remarkables: The Manifestor Prophecy
Nic longs to be a powerful manifestor like her dad. But when she turns 12, he tells her she’s still not ready to learn magic. Then Nic and two friends learn that the book series they love could be more than fantasy, and may even hold clues to family secrets. They set off on a quest to hunt down a magical tool and prevent her father from being imprisoned for a crime Nic knows he didn’t commit. This series starter takes inspiration from African American history and folklore.
As the only all-Black softball team entering the regional championship, the Firebirds don’t have much room for error. But leading up to the playoffs, team captain Sherice learns that a past crime that ruined her family’s name may have been a setup. Broken focus means more mistakes on the field. And now Sherice must both uncover the secrets of her family history and prove that Black girls belong at bat.
A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School (Adapted for Young Readers)
When Carlotta Walls LaNier was 14, she became the youngest member of the Little Rock Nine. These nine Black teenagers were the first to attend a previously all-white school. Members of the army escorted the teens to school past an angry mob to ensure their safety. Now Carlotta tells her story especially for young readers.
The Sum of Us: How Racism Hurts Everyone (Adapted for Young Readers)
If you dream of a future where everyone can succeed, then this is the book for you. Economist Heather McGhee examines how racism hurts both people of color and White people, interviews people around the country working toward a non-racist future, and offers hope and solutions to everyone who wants to see that future become a reality.
How to Be a (Young) Anti-Racist
Anti-racism is a journey, and this book by Nic Stone and Ibram X. Kendi can provide a roadmap. Nic and Ibram explore their own understanding of racism through historical events, news stories, and personal experiences. To take your exploration deeper, pair this with The (Young) Antiracist’s Workbook.
More Black History Books for Girls
Standing in the Need of a Prayer by Carole Boston Weatherford combines stunning illustrations of pivotal moments in Black history with lyrics from a traditional spiritual.
Sugar Cane: A Caribbean Rapunzel adapted by Patricia Storace features a heroine who is more educated and independent than the Rapunzel of European versions.
Black-Eyed Peas and Hoghead Cheese: A Story of Food, Family, and Freedom by Glenda Armand treats readers to the history of Soul Food in the U.S.
Read about the first nationally known African American fashion designer in Only the Best: The Exceptional Life and Fashion of Ann Lowe by Kate Messner, Margaret E. Powell, and Erin Robinson.
Looking for more inspirational women? Check out Justice Rising by Katheryn Russel-Brown, which features 12 Black women who were crucial to the American Civil Rights Movement.
You can find more Black History books for girls in my previous posts.
What about you? Do you have a favorite Black History book for girls? Have you read any of the books featured above? Tell me about it in the comments!