It may be chilly outside, but the Free Library has some titles to warm you up this month!
Young Children (up to 2nd Grade)
Hey You!: An Empowering Celebration of Growing Up Black by Dapo Adeola
This book addresses—honestly, yet hopefully—the experiences Black children face growing up with systemic racism, as well as providing hope for the future and delivering a message of empowerment to a new generation of dreamers. It’s a message that is both urgent and timeless, offering a rich and rewarding reading experience for every child. To mirror the rich variety of the Black diaspora, this book showcases artwork from Dapo Adeola and eighteen more incredible Black illustrators in one remarkable and cohesive reading experience.
Older Children (3rd Grade to 6th Grade)
Africa, Amazing Africa: Country by Country written by Atinuke; illustrated by Mouni Feddag
Atinuke, of Anna Hibiscus series fame, introduces every country on the African continent in this book. Africa is enormous and so diverse. Discovering all the differences and interesting facts becomes an adventure in this fascinating collection. The book's introduction shares some of the historical and contemporary distinctions unique to the continent. Then, each region of the continent is introduced in a double-page spread with an illustrated map featuring animals and buildings, flora and minerals, text with "welcome" written in a plethora of regional languages, a list of the countries in the region, and a survey of some special features of the region. Within these sections, each country is represented on one page, with a paragraph of descriptive text, a colorful half-page illustration, and one to three interesting facts. Readers will experience new views and be ready to discover more.
One True Loves by Elise Bryant
From the author of Happily Ever Afters comes another irresistible YA romantic comedy full of self-discovery and Black love—and a dreamy European cruise. Lenore Bennett has always been a force: a star artist and style icon at her high school, she's a master in the subtle art of not giving a... well, you know what. But now that graduation is here, she's a little less sure. She's heading to NYU in the fall with a scarlet U (for "undeclared") written across her chest. Her parents always remind her that Black kids don't have the luxury of figuring it out as they go—they have to be 110 percent prepared. But it's a lot of pressure to be her ancestors' wildest dreams when Lenore's not even sure what her dreams are yet. When her family embarks on a post-graduation Mediterranean cruise, her friend Tessa is sure Lenore's in for a whirlwind romance. But Lenore knows that doesn't happen to girls like her. Then she meets Alex Lee. After their parents bond over the Cupid Shuffle, she ends up stuck with him for the remainder of the cruise. He's a hopeless romantic and a golden boy with a ten-year plan. In short, he's irritating as hell. But as they get to know each other during the picturesque stops across Europe, Alex may be able to help Lenore find something else she's been looking for, even if she doesn't want to admit it to herself: love.
What the Fireflies Knew by Kai Harris
An ode to Black girlhood and adolescence. This story follows KB after her father dies of an overdose and the debts incurred from his addiction cause the loss of the family home in Detroit. Soon thereafter, KB and her teenage sister, Nia, are sent by their overwhelmed mother to live with their estranged grandfather in Lansing, Michigan. Over the course of a single sweltering summer, KB attempts to navigate a world that has turned upside down. Her father has been labeled a fiend. Her mother's smile no longer reaches her eyes. Her sister, once her best friend, now feels like a stranger. Her grandfather is grumpy and silent. The white kids who live across the street are friendly, but only sometimes. And they're all keeping secrets. As KB vacillates between resentment, abandonment, and loneliness, she is forced to carve out a different identity for herself and find her own voice. A dazzling and moving novel about family, identity, and race, that poignantly reveals the heartbreaking but necessary component of growing up—the realization that loved ones can be flawed and that the perfect family we all dream of looks different up close.
South to America: A Journey Below the Mason-Dixon to Understand the Soul of a Nation by Imani Perry
Perry, professor of African American Studies at Princeton University, melds memoir, travel narrative, and history in an intimate, penetrating journey through the South, from the Mason-Dixon Line to Florida, West Virginia, and the Bahamas. An essential, surprising journey through the history, rituals, and landscapes of the American South—and a revelatory argument for why you must understand the South in order to understand America.
DVDs and Blu-rays
Shattered | Starring: Cameron Monaghan, Frank Grillo, Lilly Krug, John Malkovich, Sasha Luss | Director: Luis Prieto (Release date: February 22)
After lonely tech millionaire Chris—a recent divorcee that struggles to find happiness despite having amassed a fortune—encounters charming, sexy Sky, passion grows between them. When he's injured, she quickly steps in as his nurse. However, Chris begins to have doubts once Sky's behavior shifts into an erratic state and his roommate dies without warning from mysterious causes. He now fears not only for his life but also the lives of his ex-wife and child as well.
You can find these new titles and many more great books, ebooks, audiobooks, movies, and music in our catalog and at a neighborhood library near you!