Book Corner Posts

Book Recommendations for Families Created in Transracial Adoption

Our Transracial Journeys families regularly seek out books to share with their children and to read for themselves, as white parents of black children. We are fortunate to have a resource in the Transracial Journey's Board of Direcors Secretary, Avril McInally. With a Master of Library Science from Kent State University and over 35 years as a public librarian, Avril and her colleague, Vicki Richards, collaborate to curate phenomenal book recommendations for our children and parents.   The Book Corner is a regular feature in our Transracial Journeys monthly newsletters. If you would like to receive monthly book recommendations via email, please subscribe.

Book Corner – September 2023

The Girl I Am, Was, and Never Will Be: A Speculative Memoir of Transracial Adoption Shannon Gibney  Ages 14-17 Gibney features herself as the protagonist in this part memoir, part speculative fiction novel. Shannon Gibney and Erin Powers are one and the same person. However, there’s a primal difference in that one was adopted and the other wasn’t. Using documents like vital records, correspondence written from her birth mother to her adoptive mother, and photographs of herself and family members, read more
Sharon G. Flake: Skin I'm In - Recommended for transracial adoptees

Book Corner – August 2023

The Skin I’m In Sharon Flake  Grades 6-12 Author Sharon G. Flake is a multiple-time recipient of the Coretta Scott King Award! The recipients of this award are African American authors and/or illustrators who create outstanding literature for African American children. Ms. Flake received this award for The Skin I’m In in 1999. Seventh Grader Maleeka Madison is bullied for her dark skin. Maleeka’s father died two years ago, and Maleeka’s mom struggles to pay the bills. Making Maleeka’s clothes read more
Bayou Magic

Book Corner – July 2023

Bayou Magic Jewell Parker Rhodes  Ages 8-12 Focus: Girls, African folklore, Slavery, Environmentalism Almost ten-years-old, Maddy goes to Bon Temps, a mystical place in the Bayou, to spend the summer with her grandma. While there, she makes friends with a boy named Bear who shows her where to fish, swim and explore. Queenie, her grandma, teaches Maddy to cook, be a good steward of the earth and a little of their family’s ancestral magic. Queenie also tells Maddy the story read more
Second Dad Summer Book Recommendation

Book Corner – June 2023

Second Dad Summer Benjamin Klas and Fian Arroyou Grades 4-7, Ages 9-12 This story about friendship and family takes place over a hot summer near downtown Minneapolis. Jeremiah is spending the summer with his dad and his dad’s boyfriend, Michael. Jeremiah is sometimes embarrassed by Michael’s outgoing, colorful personality, and he’s reluctant to let down his barriers with his dad’s boyfriend. However, a new friendship, gardening and a rocky relationship with a grumpy, elderly neighbor work to build a relationship read more
Maya Angelou Letter to My Daughter

Book Corner – May 2023

Letter to My Daughter by Maya Angelou A beautiful book full of accessible, beautiful insights that was dedicated to the daughter Maya Angelou never had. It’s filled with essays, poetry, lived-experience, kindness and advice for all of the world’s daughters. This small volume can be used as a touchstone for the meaningfulness of what it means to be a human being.
Allies: Real Talk About Showing Up, Screwing Up, And Trying Again

Book Corner – April 2023

Allies: Real Talk about Showing Up, Screwing Up, and Trying Again Edited by Shakirah Bourne and Dana Alison Levy Grades 7-9, ages 12-17 What does it mean to be an ally? Seventeen YA authors share their thoughts and experiences in this encouraging and empowering book. Yes, mistakes will be made, but readers are encouraged to learn and try again. Each author has a different story to tell. Eric Smith writes about his life as a transracial adoptee, Kayla Whaley talks read more
Book Recommendation

Book Corner – March 2023

Somewhere Sisters: A Story of Adoption, Identity, and the Meaning of Family By Erika Hayasaki   Vietnamese twins Loan and Ha were separated when they were babies. Ha was raised by her aunt in a loving home in rural Vietnam. Loan was adopted, renamed Isabella, and grew up in a loving home in a Chicago suburb. Isabella’s American family weren’t told their daughter was a twin, and when they found out, Isabella’s mom started to search for Ha. After many read more
Book Recommendation for Transracial Families

Book Corner – February 2023

And We Rise: The Civil Rights Movement in Poems By Erica Martin Grades 7 and Up After having read about Claudette Colvin’s refusal to give up her seat on the bus to a white person, author Erica Martin was intrigued. Who was Claudette Colvin and why don’t we know about her? After all, she had done the same thing Rosa Parks did and before Rosa Parks did it too! Wondering what else she didn’t know about the history of Black read more
Book recommendation for young black women exploring racial identity

Book Corner – January 2023

Token Black Girl: A Memoir By Danielle Prescod Danielle’s Black parents raised her to be “colorblind.” They rarely talked about race, and Danielle sensed it was not a comfortable topic. Attending predominantly white schools, and avidly consuming the same whitewashed movies, magazines, TV shows, and books as her friends, Danielle was confused and conflicted about her identity. She convinced her mother to take her for chemical hair treatments starting in elementary school, and later developed disordered eating in an effort read more

Book Corner – December 2022

Happy All-Idays: By Cindy Jin, illustrated by Rob Sayegh Jr. “We all celebrate the season in our own special way. Let’s look at how families prepare for each holiday.” With a double-page spread for each holiday, this inclusive book shows families enjoying Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, and Chrismukkah.  Ending with Season’s Greetings and Happy New Year, Happy All-Idays is a celebration for everyone. Merrytale: A Christmas Adventure By Christopher Franceschelli, illustrated by Allison Black On Christmas Eve two brown children are read more