We Recommend

Black History Month

Recommended reading for adults, teens and children in celebration of Black History Month.

James, Marlon, 1970-
A masterful novel that explores the events and characters surrounding the attempted assassination of Bob Marley during the political turmoil in Jamaica during the late 1970s.
Hill, Karen.
A moving portrait of a young woman's experience of life, love and the shifting tides of mental health in 1980s-era Berlin.
Alexis, André, 1957- author.
An utterly convincing and moving look at the beauty and perils of consciousness, this novel challenges the reader to answer the age-old question, what is the meaning of life?
Also available in these formats:
A contemporary remix of the story of black Canada. Through the intertwining poetic forms, this compilation fits together a poetic picture of the black Canadian experience.
Gallaher, Bill, author.
From a slave to one of the most successful ranchers in Canadian history, the true story of John Ware, an unsung hero, is brought to life in this fictionalized portrait.
Hill, Lawrence, 1957-
Marathon runner, Keita, must go into hiding after he is targeted for his father's political views. As a refugee, he is in danger of deportation back home where he will face certain death
Also available in these formats:
Clarke, Austin, 1934-2016.
In this unforgettable memoir, Giller Prize-winning author and poet, Austin Clarke, shares his experiences growing up in Barbados and moving to Toronto to attend university before becoming a journalist.
Also available in these formats:
Rae, Issa.
Based on an award-winning web series, this book follows the life of an awkward black girl named "J" as she navigates through her job, love and other uncomfortable social situations.
Also available in these formats:
Clarke, George Elliott.
Inspired by Clarke's father, this story follows the travels and romantic exploits of Carle Black as he tours the back roads of the east coast striving for pleasure, success and most of all, respect.
Shreve, Craig, author.
The story of a young activist who was brutally murdered during the Civil Rights-era. Fifty years later, Warren Williams decides to renew his fight to bring the men responsible to justice.
Also available in these formats:
Drawing on photographs from the Wedge Collection, this volume reflects on what it means to be African Canadian.
Everyday lives and professional activities of individuals and families in these communities highlight early activism to end slavery in the United States and to promote civil rights in the United States and Canada.
Mordecai, Pamela, author.
From the Caribbean island of St. Chris, a rich and compelling tale surrounding the mysterious truth of Grace Carpenter's true identity.
Also available in these formats:
Randall, A. (Alice), author.
Delving through four generations of traditions, healthy soul food recipes are wonderfully crafted together by a mother and daughter team.
Murray, Victoria Christopher, author.
After a 17 year old African American boy is shot dead by a white man, the boy's mother and the shooter's wife face tremendous difficulties.
Also available in these formats:
Laffoley, Steven Edwin, author.
Nova Scotian boxer, Sam Langford, fought to overcome the colour barrier that kept him from being the world boxing champion in three different weight classes.
Higgins, Dalton, author.
Award-winning journalist, Dalton Higgins, shares a collection of musings, art work, essays and more, exploring the space where technology, music, race and pop culture intersect.
Gill, Joel Christian.
A graphic anthology offers nine stories of underrepresented heroes not often found in history books.
Mandiela, Ahdri Zhina.
Four cousins reunite in Jamaica when their grannie passes away and use this opportunity to empower and free themselves of past experiences.
Morgan, Dwayne, 1974- author.
A work of love, this picture book shines a light on the special bond between father and daughter and the joy that fatherhood brings.
Humphreys, Jessica Dee, author.
Accompanied with poignant illustrations, this is the inspirational tale of child soldier Michel Chikwanine's escape from the rebel militia in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Alexander, Kwame.
Free verse and hip hop poetry capture the highs and lows in the lives of 14 year old twin basketball stars, Josh and Jordan.
Also available in these formats:
Bradford, Karleen, author.
A riveting tale of Julia May and her family fleeing from their life of slavery and travelling on foot to find a new life in Canada.
Also available in these formats:
Walker, Sally M.
Henry copes with slavery by singing freedom songs. When his family is sold away, he asks his friends to put him in a box and mail him to a free state.
Russell-Brown, Katheryn, 1961- author.
A pictorial biography of African American jazz musician Melba Doretta Liston who played the trombone and composed music for many famous musicians of the twentieth century.
Hughes, Langston, 1902-1967.
A beautiful celebration of the love shared between an African American mother and her baby.
Nelson, Kadir.
A picture book biography depicting Mandela's determination and struggles to change South Africa.