Commemorate Juneteenth with Books


By Troy Johnson AALBC

Freedom celebrations are just around the corner! Carry out the spirit of Juneteenth with these legacy-loving, gift-perfect titles: from historical-fiction picture books, to iconic biography, to a book-length illustrated poem on Black love—every title a Juneteenth must-have!


I Love My People by Kim Singleton

Say it with her now: “I love my people!” In rhythmic prowess, Kim Singleton recounts the beauty and legacy of Black people who are “too many to name, from the corners of obscurity, to the highest of fame.”

I Love My People is a poetic tribute to African American history-makers and culture-shakers, complete with nostalgic photography and vibrant, playful illustration. A gift book must-have!. Buy Now ▶


In Spite of the Consequences: Prison Letters on Exoneration, Abolition, and Freedom by Lacino Hamilton

“If I do not write, who will? What I am living with here does not allow me to wait until others fully wake up to the serious harm prisons cause.” Tireless, empathetic, and unflinching, Hamilton’s voice throughout these letters shines with immediacy.

In his passionate critiques of the prison-industrial complex, we sense something unexpected and profound: hope for a reimagining of our systems—a humanity-affirming model of justice. Buy Now ▶


Opening the Road: Victor Hugo Green and His Green Book by Keila V. Dawson, Illustrated by Alleanna Harris

In this first-of-its-kind picture book about the creation and distribution of The Green Book, author Keila Dawson and illustrator Alleanna Harris tell the story of the man behind it and how this travel guide opened the road for a safer, more equitable America. Recommended for readers ages 3-8. Buy Now ▶


Black Hands White House: Slave Labor and the Making of America by Renee K. Harrison

Author Renee K. Harrison bears witness to the role enslaved, Black-bodied people played in building the US, its physical and fiscal infrastructure, and the nation’s capital city, and calls for a substantial monument on the National Mall to affirm and document their contributions.

This book will impact lives by adding significantly to conversations on racial disparity, race relations, history-making, reparations, and monument erection and removal. Buy Now ▶


Sarah Rising by Ty Chapman, Illustrated by DeAnn Wiley

In Sarah Rising, author Ty Chapman provides a child’s-eye view of a protest and offers an opportunity for children to talk about why people take to the streets to protest racial injustice. Readers will gain a new appreciation for how important it is to be part of a community of people who protect each other. Recommended for readers ages 5-8. Buy Now ▶


Toni Morrison’s Spiritual Vision: Faith, Folktales, and Feminism in Her Life and Literature by Nadra Nittle

Author Nadra Nittle unpacks an oft-ignored but essential element of Toni Morrison’s work—her religion.

She gives readers a deeper, richer understanding of Morrison’s life and writing. Nadra Nittle’s wide-ranging, deep exploration of Morrison’s oeuvre reveals the role of religion and spirituality in her life and literature. Buy Now ▶