Multicultural and Nature Books

In addition to our annual book awards, we also recommend multicultural and nature books in our regular issues. Check out these recently published books at your public library:

Guru Nanak: First of the Sikhs by Demi. Wisdom Tales. Guru Nanak was the founder of Sikh religion. Guru Nanak, born in India over 500 years ago, traveled through South Asia and the Arabian Peninsula for 25 years sharing his message of one God, heartfelt worship, honest work, peace, sharing, service to humanity, and equality for all. There are now over 25 million Sikhs in the world. Learn about his remarkable life in this beautifully illustrated picture book. Ages 5 – 9.

Finish Strong: Seven Marathons, Seven Continents, Seven Days by Dace McGillivray. Nomad Press. Are you a runner? A sports fan? This is the inspiring story of Dave McGillivray who successfully completed the World Marathon Challenge. He ran seven marathons in one week—that’s running 26.2 miles each day for seven days in a row—then discovered that he needed to have a heart surgery. Six months after his heart surgery he was back to running marathons and finished the Boston Marathon! Ages 7 – 11.

Firdaus Learns About the Heart by Dr. Sara Kulsum Alavi; illustr. Aurica Safiulina. This is a really cool way to learn about human anatomy and the heart, in particular. Firdaus is an elementary grade student at Medina Academy, and she loves science because her teacher, Mrs. Ahmed, makes it exciting and easy to understand. Using activities, diagrams, experiments and fun facts, she teaches students about the human heart. Along the way, we also learn a little about Muslim culture through the student and family interactions. Ages 9 – 12.

Accused: My Story of Injustice by Adama Bah. Norton Young Readers. Adama came to the U.S. from Guinea, Africa at the age of two. She grew up sheltered by her parents in New York City. After the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11th, 2001, she began experiencing prejudice and hatred because she was a Muslim. Then, in 2005, when she was just 16, she was falsely accused of being a suicide bomber and arrested. In this engaging book, she shares her harrowing experiences of harassment and humiliation in the detention center. (Also available from the same publisher, Hurricane: My Story of Resilience by Salvador Gómez-Colón. The book offers the true story of Salvador, a high schooler who helped rural residents of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria in 2017. Both of these first person, non-fiction accounts are part of a new series called I, Witness.) Ages 10 – 14.

The Golden Key of Gangotri by Eval N. Danon. Blue Branch Press. Harley is a 21-year-old student in New York, whose father vanished in the high Himalayas. This soul-stirring adventure, set in Northern India, takes readers on Harley’s journey of self-discovery, in which she uncovers the answers she had been desperate to find. Ages 13 – 18.

Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature. Edited and translated by Miriam Udel. New York University Press. This wonderful collection of translated stories and poems from 20th century Jewish literature is an outstanding resource for today’s Jewish children in the United States and other English-speaking regions of the world. Arranged by themes including Jewish holidays, history, family, fables and folktales, this 325-page anthology covers both prominent and lesser-known authors from Eastern Europe as well as New York and Latin America. Anyone who would like to understand the Jewish diaspora and its religious, cultural and ethnic heritage will find Honey on the Page a fascinating read! Ages 14 – adult.

Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter by Veronica Chambers with Jennifer Harlan. Versify/HMH. This outstanding book, with many telling photographs, shares the history of the Black community. The rise of Black Lives Matter during 2020 resulted from a long history of oppression and racism in the country. In this 152-page book, we learn about systematic racism, the art of protesting, people power, and much more, including how to become an activist. The last chapter offers excerpts of conversations with four BLM leaders. The black and white vintage photos of the Civil Rights movement during the 1950s and 1960s and color photographs from the recent street protests after the brutal killings of unarmed Blacks illustrate the rage and desperation that helped fuel this powerful movement. Ages 13 – adult.

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