|For Further Reading
Children's and Teen Titles
Black Is Brown Is Tan
McCully, Emily Arnold, illustrator
Describes in verse a family with a brown-skinned mother, white-skinned father, two children, and their various relatives.
Hard to Be Six
Hanna, Cheryl, illustrator
A six-year-old boy who wants to grow up fast learns a lesson about patience from his grandmother.
Ahlberg, Janet and Allan
Introduces the serious and fun activities of students just starting school.
Heaven's All-Star Jazz Band
A young boy imagines his grandfather playing with jazz music greats up in heaven.
Zhang, Ange, illustrator
When her maternal grandfather comes from China, Helen, who is biracial, develops a special bond with him despite their age and language differences.
Take a tour of the sights of Harlem, including the Metro-North Train, brownstones, shopping on 125th Street, a barbershop, summer basketball, the Boy's Choir, and sunset over the Harlem River.
Black, White, Just Right!
Trivas, Irene, illustrator
A girl explains how her parents are different in color, tastes in art and food, and pet preferences, and how she herself is different too but just right.
The Patchwork Quilt
Pinkney, Jerry, illustrator
Using scraps cut from the family's old clothing, Tanya helps her grandmother and mother make a beautiful quilt that tells the story of her family's life.
How My Parents Learned to Eat
Friedman, Ina R.
An American sailor courts a Japanese girl and each tries, in secret, to learn the other's way of eating.
Billy and Belle
A newborn baby and the exciting confusion of Pet Day at school combine to make a very special day for Billy and Belle.
Bubbe & Gram: My Two Grandmothers
Bynum, Janie, illustrator
This touching story involves a child who loves and learns from her two very different grandmothers, one Jewish, one Christian. Each grandmother shares the richness of her own tradition with her grandchild, while still respecting the other religious tradition that is part of the little girl's life.
The Friday Nights of Nana
Nivola, Claire, illustrator
Jennie helps her grandmother prepare for a family Sabbath celebration.
Binch, Caroline, illustrator
Although a classmate says that she cannot play Peter Pan in the school play because she is black, Grace discovers that she can do anything she sets her mind to do.
The Two Mrs. Gibsons
Wells, Daryl, illustrator
The biracial daughter of an African American father and a Japanese mother fondly recalls growing up with her mother and her father's mother, two very different but equally loving women.
The Aunt in Our House
Soman, David, illustrator
When the Aunt comes to live with them, the entire family enjoys her company and helps her forget about the home she has lost.
Bower, Joel, illustrator
Soon after her saxophone-playing neighbor composes a special song, a young girl's baby arrives and receives an appropriate name.
The Colors of Us
Seven-year-old Lena and her mother observe the variations in the color of their friends' skin, viewed in terms of foods and things found in nature.
Horace, an adopted child, realizes that being part of a family depends on how you feel and not how you look.
Machado, Ana Maria
Enchanted by Nina Bonita's black skin, a white rabbit determines to find a way to have children as beautiful and black as she is.
You Be Me, I'll Be You
A brown-skinned daughter and her white father experiment to see what it would be like to have the other's skin color.
Soentpiet, Chris K., illustrator
Benjamin Banneker's grandmother journeyed from England to Maryland in the late seventeenth century, worked as an indentured servant, began a farm of her own, and married a freed slave.
Lee, Dom and Keunhee, illustrators
Mai returns to Vietnam, the land of her mother's birth, to discover both a new country and something about herself.
Porter, Janice Lee, illustrator
Hope's new and unusual dessert blends well with the traditional dishes prepared by her cousins and Aunt Poogee at their annual summer get-together.
Porter, Janice Lee, illustrator
During a visit with her great-aunt, a young girl learns the story behind her name and learns to feel proud of her biracial heritage.
Light the Lights! A Story about Celebrating Hanukkah and Christmas
Emma celebrates Hanukkah and Christmas with her family and friends.
After her own grandmother dies, a young Russian-American girl is initiated into her neighbor's family.
Mrs. Katz and Tush
A long-lasting friendship develops between Larnel, a young African-American, and Mrs. Katz, a lonely, Jewish widow, when Larnel presents Mrs. Katz with a scrawny kitten without a tail.
The Trees of the Dancing Goats
During a scarlet fever epidemic one winter in Michigan, a Jewish family helps make Christmas special for their sick neighbors by making their own Hanukkah miracle.
Charlie Parker Played Be Bop
Raschka captures the energy of Parker's jazz using words and pictures.
An African-American Jewish boy traces his ancestry with the help of the Love Bird of Paris.
Robinson, Aminah Brenda Lynn, illustrator
At Christmas-Hanukkah time, a Christian woodcarver gives a carved angel to a young Jewish friend, who struggles with accepting the Christmas gift until he realizes that friendship means the same thing in any religion.
A Japanese American man recounts his grandfather's journey to America which he later also undertakes, and the feelings of being torn by a love for two different countries.
Tree of Cranes
A Japanese boy learns of Christmas when his mother decorates a pine tree with paper cranes.
For My Family, Love, Allie
Allie, whose father is black and mother is white, decides to make special food as a present for her relatives when they come for a big family party.
I am America
Photos and rhyming text celebrate the diversity of America's children.
Smith, Cynthia Leitich
Van Wright, Cornelius and Ying-Hwa Hu, illustrator
Jenna, a member of the Muscogee, or Creek, Nation, borrows jingles from the dresses of several friends and relatives so that she can perform the jingle dance at the powwow. Includes a note about the jingle dance tradition and its regalia.
Matt and his father, just the two of them, play baseball early on Saturday morning on their own home field.
Nate and Matt have a peaceful evening camping out with their father in the woods behind their house.
Bear E. Bear
Russo, Marisabina, illustrator
When Gaila's baby sister Delphine drops Bear E. Bear into the mud, Mama makes sure he gets nice and clean in the washing machine.
Through Moon and Stars and Night Skies
Turner, Ann Warren
Hale, James Graham, illustrator
A boy who came from far away to be adopted by a couple in this country remembers how unfamiliar and frightening some of the things were in his new home, before he accepted the love to be found there.
Simple text and illustrations introduce Lulu and her family, Lulu's pets, best friend, and new shoes.
"More, More, More," Said the Baby
Three babies are caught up in the air and given loving attention by a father, grandmother, and mother.
Casilla, Robert, illustrator
For International Day at school, Pablo wants to bring something that reflects the cultures of both his parents.
Chapter Books (Grades 2-5)
Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret
Faced with the difficulties of growing up and choosing a religion, a twelve-year-old girl talks over her problems with her own private God.
Trouble at Fort La Pointe
In the early 1700s, twelve-year-old Suzette, an Ojibwa-French girl, hopes that her father will win the fur-trapping contest so that he can quit being a voyageur and stay with his family year-round, but when he is accused of stealing, Suzette must use her knowledge of both French and Ojibwa ways to find the real thief.
Me, Mop, and the Moondance Kid
Myers, Walter Dean
Although adoption has taken them out of the New Jersey institution where they grew up, eleven-year-old T.J. and his younger brother Moondance remain involved with their friend Mop's relentless attempts to become adopted and to wreak revenge on their baseball rivals the obnoxious Eagles.
Half and Half
At Seattle's annual Folk Fest, twelve-year-old Fiona and her older brother are torn between trying to please their Chinese grandmother and making their Scottish grandparents happy.
Me and Rupert Goody
Eleven-year-old Jennalee is jealous when a slow-thinking black man arrives in her Smoky Mountains community and claims to be the son of Uncle Beau, the owner of the general store and Jennalee's only friend.
Ginger Brown: Too Many Houses
Wyeth, Sharon Dennis
Van Wright, Cornelius and Ying-Hwa Hu, illustrators
When her parents get a divorce, six-year-old Ginger lives for a while with each set of grandparents and begins to understand her mixed background and her new family situation.
Young Adult Fiction (Grades 6 and up)
The son of a Jewish father and black mother, high school senior Zack has never been allowed to meet his mother's family, but after doing a research project on a former slave, he travels from his home in Canada to Natchez, Mississippi to find his grandfather.
Sam I Am
Twelve-year-old Sam, the son of a Jewish father and Christian mother, struggles to understand religion and its role in his family's life during the Hanukkah and Christmas holidays.
Intellectually and athletically gifted, TJ, a multiracial, adopted teenager, shuns organized sports and the gung-ho athletes at his high school until he agrees to form a swimming team and recruits some of the school's less popular students.
When ten-year-old Rayona's Native American mother enters a treatment facility, her estranged father, a Black man, finally introduces her to his side of the family, who are not at all what she expected.
America: A Novel
Teenage America, a part-black, part-white, part-anything boy who has spent many years in institutions for disturbed, antisocial behavior, tries to piece his life together.
Valley of the Moon: The Diary of Maria Rosalia de Milagros
The 1845-1846 diary of thirteen-year-old Maria, servant to the wealthy Spanish family which took her in when her Indian mother died.
Twelve-year-old Buhlaire feels out of place in her community, struggles to unearth her past and her family history, and gradually discovers more and more about her long-missing father.
A Place to Call Home
Koller, Jackie French
Caring for her two younger siblings after their unreliable mother abandons them, fifteen-year-old Anna discovers the difficulties of trying to be a parent.
The Last Snake Runner
Little, Kimberley Griffiths
Fourteen-year-old Kendall, half Anglo and half Acoma Indian, travels through time to sixteenth-century Acoma, New Mexico, where, in the midst of the invasion of Spanish conquistadors, he joins his Acoma ancestors to play his destined role as the last member of the Snake Clan.
Emily Rose has always felt comfortable growing up in Connecticut with her African American mother and her "French American" father, but when they spend some time with her great-grandmother in Texas, Emily Rose learns about her black heritage and uncovers some new and exciting parts of her own identity.
The summer of 1961 brings change to eleven-year-old Celli and her town of Mystic, Georgia, when her beloved Sophie becomes involved in the Civil Rights Movement and Celli learns a secret about the father who left her and her family long ago.
Nye, Naomi Shihab
When fourteen-year-old Liyanne Abboud, her younger brother, and her parents move from St. Louis to a new home between Jerusalem and the Palestinian village where her father was born, they face many changes and must deal with the tensions between Jews and Palestinians.
Adaline Falling Star
Osborne, Mary Pope
Feeling abandoned by her deceased Arapaho mother and her explorer father, Adaline Falling Star runs away from the prejudiced cousins with whom she is staying and comes close to death in the wilderness, with only a mongrel dog for company.
Jip: His Story
While living on a Vermont poor farm during 1855 and 1856, Jip learns his identity and that of his mother and comes to understand how he arrived at this place.
The River Between Us
During the early days of the Civil War, the Pruitt family takes in two mysterious young ladies who have fled New Orleans to come north to Illinois.
The Likes of Me
Platt, Randall Beth
In 1918, having run away from the Washington State lumber camp she calls home, a fourteen-year-old half-Chinese albino named Cordy makes her way to Seattle and finds work in a carnival.
I Only Made Up the Roses
Porte, Barbara Ann
Seventeen-year-old Cydra presents a portrait of her family whose history spans three continents.
The Broken Bridge
Over the course of a long summer in Wales, sixteen-year-old Ginny, the mixed-race, artist daughter of an English father and a Haitian mother, learns that she has a half-brother from her father's earlier marriage, and that her own mother may still be alive.
Told by a teenager returned to the Christian family in England, the half-Tahitian daughter of the British ship Bounty's second-in-command and mutineer, Fletcher Christian.
Send One Angel Down
Schwartz, Virginia Frances
A young slave tries to hide the horrors of slavery from his younger cousin, a light-skinned slave who is the daughter of the plantation owner.
Taylor, Mildred D.
After the Civil War, Paul, the son of a white father and black mother, finds himself caught between the worlds of colored folks and white folks as he pursues his dream of owning land. (Prequel to Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry.)
The House You Pass on the Way
When fourteen-year-old Staggerlee, the daughter of a racially mixed marriage, spends a summer with her cousin Trout, she begins to question her sexuality and catches a glimpse of her possible future self.
Twelve-year-old Lafayette's close relationship with his older brother Charlie changes after Charlie is released from a detention home and blames Lafayette for the death of their mother.
The World of Daughter McGuire
Wyeth, Sharon Dennis
Eleven-year-old Daughter, called a "zebra" by a boy at school because she is part black and part white, wonders exactly who and what she is.
Robin, a young ballet dancer who is half Chinese and half white, works in a fish store for Mr. Tsow, a brusque Chinese who accuses her of being a half-person and who harbors a bitter secret.