6 Books by Black Creators for Middle School and High School

A couple weeks ago, we shared a list of 12 Picture Books by Black Authors and Illustrators. In this blog post, we’re continuing to highlight books with Black characters by Black creators, but this time for middle school and high school.

I Am Alfonso Jones

I Am Alfonso Jones
Written by Tony Medina, illustrated by Stacey Robinson and John Jennings

The Hate U Give meets The Lovely Bones in this unflinching graphic novel about the afterlife of a young man killed by an off-duty police officer, co-illustrated by New York Times bestselling artist John Jennings.

Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty

Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty
Written by G. Neri, illustrated by Randy DuBurke

A graphic novel based on the life and death of Robert “Yummy” Sandifer, an eleven-year-old gang member from Chicago’s Southside who was killed by his own gang members.

Perfect Liars

Perfect Liars
Written by Kimberly Reid

Andrea Faraday is junior class valedictorian at the exclusive Woodruff School, where she was voted Most Likely to Do Everything Right. But looks can be deceiving. In this YA heist novel, a society girl with a sketchy past leads a crew of kids in using their criminal skills for good.

Chess Rumble

Chess Rumble
Written by G. Neri, illustrated by Jesse Joshua Watson

A story in free verse about a boy who learns to use his mind instead of his fists through the guidance of an unconventional mentor and the game of chess.

The Story of Tennis Champion Arthur Ashe

The Story of Tennis Champion Arthur Ashe
Written by Crystal Hubbard, illustrated by Kevin Belford

This chapter book biography from our “The Story of” line is an action-packed tribute to Arthur Ashe, one of the most compelling athletes and humanitarians of the twentieth century.

The Story of Trailblazing Actor Ira Aldridge

The Story of Trailblazing Actor Ira Aldridge
Written by Glenda Armand, illustrated by Floyd Cooper

This entry in our “The Story of” line of chapter-book biographies features Ira Aldridge, an African American actor considered one of the greatest Shakespearean performers of the nineteenth century, and an outspoken advocate for the abolitionist movement in the United States.

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