During Black History Month I try to make it a point to read books, watch movies, or documentaries that highlight the contributions of African Americans in our nations’ development. It’s not that I don’t do this other times of the year, however, it is a good reminder that sometimes we have to make an effort to expose ourselves to history that may have been left out of the typical history books that only do a survey of events from a bird’s eye view.
Today I’m sharing books with you that range from adult to picture book and fiction to non-fiction. Most of these books we’ve read within the past two years. These books go beyond the stories of Rosa Parks and MLK—not because those stories aren’t important—they are, but it’s also time for other lesser-known stories to be highlighted. I hope you will discover a new story in the list below!
This novel is about a Nigerian man in the late 1800s and what happens when his world collides with Christian missionaries who settle in his village. Published in 1958, Achebe’s writing is masterfully spare and fresh to modern readers as he writes about a man who is no longer at home in his own tribe. So many of our books are told from the white man’s perspective and what makes this novel unique is the point of view is from the African perspective. Although fiction, it is based on the historical colonization of Nigeria.
A classic in middle grade literature we follow Cassie Logan as she and her family fight to keep their land in the midst of the Depression and racial prejudice.
A touching true story about a man’s capture in Africa and his slavery in American until he is able to buy his freedom. Once a prince in his tribe, he strives to remember who he is and maintain his dignity.
When Stella and her brother see a KKK cross burning in the night it throws their community in turmoil.