Because our books deal with many different kinds of families and all different types of diversity, we regularly get asked for books that feature transracial adoption. Because we don’t live in a color-blind world, transracial adoption (adopting a child of a different race or ethnic group) is a complicated act, and presents unique challenges for both the adoptive family and the adoptee.
Below we’ve compiled a list of children’s, middle grade, and young adult books that feature transracial adoption in some way. Please note that this list should be taken as list of resources for further investigation and not as a list of recommendations. Before using a book yourself, we encourage you to evaluate it (we recommend Dr. Sarah Park’s excellent post, Adoption and Children’s Literature, as a guide).
Bringing Asha Home by Uma Krishnaswami, ill. by Jamel Akib: A young boy prepares for the arrival of his new little sister, Asha, from India.
Journey Home by Lawrence McKay, Jr., ill. by Dom Lee and Keunhee Lee: Mai travels to Vietnam with her mother, who was adopted, in search of her mother’s biological family.
Horace by Holly Keller: This allegorical book about adoption focuses on a spotted cat adopted by two striped tigers, focusing on the idea that love and family transcend looks.
A Mother for Choco by Keiko Kasza: A book for the very young set about a little bird who is ultimately adopted by a bear.
We Wanted You by Liz Rosenberg, illus. by Peter Catalanotto: This story works backwards through the years, telling one family’s adoption story.