As a multi cultural mom raising multi cultural children, it’s very important to me that they have representation in their toys and books. Black History Month is here and I wanted to compile a list of the best Graphic novels that feature African American main characters. I have an eclectic mix of both fiction and nonfiction from multiple publishers. Here are some of the best kids graphic novels to read for Black History Month!
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1. Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad
Harriett Tubman and the Underground Railroad gives a brief overview of Harriet Tubman’s life, including details about the underground railroad – told through a graphic novel format.
2. New Kid
New Kid is a timely, honest graphic novel about starting over at a new school where diversity is low and the struggle to fit in is real, from award-winning author-illustrator Jerry Craft.
3. The Life of Frederick Douglass
A graphic novel biography of Frederick Douglass the escaped slave, abolitionist, public speaker, and most photographed man of the nineteenth century, based on his autobiographical writings and speeches, spotlighting the key events and people that shaped the life of this great American. This is a must have kids graphic novel for Black History Month!
4. Cleopatra in Space
A funny, action-packed graphic novel featuring a young Cleopatra — yes, THAT Cleopatra — who’s transported to the future and learns it’s up to her to save the galaxy!
5. Just Jaime
Just Jaime is another spot-on story of middle school drama and friendship from Terri Libenson, national bestselling author of Invisible Emmie and Positively Izzy.
Come join the Eisner-nominated team of Jeremy Whitley and M. Goodwin for a tale of swashbuckling in the face of sexism. Princeless is the action/adventure for the girl who’s tired of waiting to be rescued and ready to save herself!
7. Moon Girl and the Devil Dinosaur
In Moon Girl, LUNELLA LAFAYETTE is a preteen super genius who wants to change the world-but learned the hard way that it takes MORE than just big brains. Fearful of the monstrous INHUMAN genes inside her, life is turned upside down when a savage, red-scaled tyrant is teleported from prehistoric past to a far-flung future we call TODAY. The pair are many things, and together the most amazing Marvel Team-Up.
8. The Crossover
With a bolt of lightning on my kicks . . . The court is SIZZLING. My sweat is DRIZZLING. Stop all that quivering. ’Cuz tonight I’m delivering,” raps twelve-year-old Josh Bell. Thanks to their dad, he and his twin brother, Jordan, are kings on the court. But Josh has more than basketball in his blood—he’s got mad beats, too, which help him find his rhythm when it’s all on the line.
See the Bell family in a whole new light through Dawud Anyabwile’s dynamic illustrations in The Crossover as the brothers’ winning season unfolds, and the world as they know it begins to change.
9. Pumpkin Heads
In Pumpkinheads, beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author Rainbow Rowell and Eisner Award–winning artist Faith Erin Hicks have teamed up to create this tender and hilarious story about two irresistible teens discovering what it means to leave behind a place―and a person―with no regrets.
10. Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott
This powerful graphic novel follows the courageous life of Rosa Parks, who was arrested in 1955 for not giving up her seat on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. With comic book-style illustrations and engaging, easy-to-read text, this biography will inspire, entertain, and inform young readers about an individual who made a significant contribution to society. A must-have in any home, classroom, or library seeking a historical understanding of contemporary racial issues.
11. The Black Panther Party: A Graphic Novel History
Using dramatic comic book-style retellings and illustrated profiles of key figures, The Black Panther Party captures the major events, people, and actions of the party, as well as their cultural and political influence and enduring legacy.