Cynthia Liu, author (PARIS PAN and THE GREAT CALL OF CHINA) and frequent guest speaker recently put a call out to fellow writers to name what she titled "Contemporary Children’s and Teen Fiction Books Featuring People of Color Recommended by Authors of Contemporary Children’s and Teen Fiction Books Featuring People of Color." Quite a mouthful, but quite a list to! As she says in her blog, she presented at the Chicago Teacher-Librarians Association Breakfast about “Diversity within Diversity,” emphasizing the importance of seeking out books that feature contemporary kids and teens of color that don’t focus solely on race, cultural, or ethnic heritage. These books may also deal with other issues that today’s children and teens face, ranging from the serious to the light-hearted."
The list includes books for young readers, like ROSES IN MY CARPET by Rukhsana Khan & JACKSON JONES AND MISSION GREENTOP by Mary Quattlebaum; Middle Grade includes THE GREAT WALL OF LUCY WU by Wendy Shang & RICKSHAW GIRL by Mitali Perkins; and for older readers DOES MY HEAD LOOK BIG IN THIS? by Randel Abdul Fattah & HATERS by Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez.
This list is being updated regularly, and you can provide your input to. Here are her guidelines:
- Books must feature a person of color (POC) as a main character.
- These books are not solely about racial, cultural and ethnic heritage. These books may also deal with other issues that today’s children and teens face, ranging from the serious to the light-hearted.
- Books must have been first published in 2000 or later.
- Books are set in current day times, or even in the future, so long as the character is from current day times (i.e. contemporary main character).
- Books do not have to be award-winners or well-known. They just have to be winning books to the authors who recommended them.
- Books must be published by a trade publisher listed in the CWIM or CBC.
- If you are an author of a contemporary fiction children’s and teen book featuring a person of color and would like to recommend qualifying books for this list, please complete the form at http://www.cynthealiu.com/