In a world where representation matters, the power of literature in celebrating diversity and empowering marginalized voices cannot be underestimated. However, in recent years, a wave of empowering books has emerged, showcasing the strength, resilience, and magic of Black girls. These books celebrate their experiences, triumphs, and challenges, offering readers an opportunity to immerse themselves in narratives that inspire, uplift, and promote positive self-identity. Here are some books that celebrate Black girl magic!
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The Little Mermaid Golden Book
“The Little Mermaid” is the beloved story of Ariel, a beautiful and spirited young mermaid with a thirst for adventure. The youngest of King Triton’s daughters, and the most defiant, Ariel longs to find out more about the world beyond the sea, and while visiting the surface, falls for the dashing Prince Eric. While mermaids are forbidden to interact with humans, Ariel must follow her heart. She makes a deal with the evil sea witch, Ursula, which gives her a chance to experience life on land, but ultimately places her life – and her father’s crown – in jeopardy. Relive the magic of the film again and again in this Little Golden Book, perfect for kids ages 2 to 5 and fans and collectors of all ages!
I am Enough by Grace Byers
I am Enough celebrates the differences between friends and it’s a sweet reminder that everyone has something special to bring to the world.
Lola At the Library
The Lola series is about an adorable Black toddler who is learning about all sorts of things. Our favorite book in the series is where Lola heads to the library and dreams up all sorts of adventures after choosing several books.
You’re never too young to start cooking! Tiana learned the basics from her daddy when she was just a little girl–and with this cookbook for kids, aspiring young chefs can follow in her footsteps.
Featuring simple step-by-step instructions and mouth-watering photos of each dish, this cookbook makes it easy to whip up everything from twists on New Orleans favorites like Chicken and Sausage Gumbo, to delicious desserts like Tiana-Style Beignets, and much more.
Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History
I love Vashti Harrison and her illustrations in Little Leaders! Each bold woman depicted has a short inspirational story. We usually tackle 1-2 stories before bedtime and my children have learned about people like Bessie Coleman and Gwen Ifill. This book is a great reminder that any little girl can grow to be a great leader.
I Love My Hair!
In this novel, a young girl learns about the beauty of her hair. It’s such an important lesson for Black girls because our hair has often been the source of ridicule. I Love My Hair teaches self-confidence and should be on the bookshelf for every child of color!
STELLA’S STELLAR HAIR
Black girl magic takes the solar system in Stella’s Stellar Hair, a celebration of hair, family, and self-love from debut author-illustrator Yesenia Moises!
Emi’s Curly Coily, Cotton Candy Hair
This is another adorable book that celebrates the magic of Black natural hair! I personally have thick curly hair and have just only recently embraced natural hairstyles as an adult. This is a great reminder that Black hair is unique and is a crowning glory for all Black girls!
Dancing in the Wings
Dancing in the Wings by Debbie Allen is a love letter to all little Black girls who want to dance. The main character is taller and has big feet but she finds the confidence to embrace the dancer world. It’s also a great reminder that representation matters especially in art and dance!
I Know I Can!
I Know I Can! is a favorite book of ours because of its beautiful illustrations. This book affirms the beauty of brown skin and self-confidence. It’s also the perfect length for a bedtime story!
I grew up on the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Fresh Princess is a spin-off of the story with a main character named Denise who expresses herself through her bright and funky outfits!
My Nana and Me
My Nana and Me celebrates the special bond between a grandmother and her granddaughter. The book follows a little girl as she plays and explores with her grandmother. It’s so important to see Black bonding and love and this picture book celebrates it so well.
Daddy and Me and the Rhyme to be
A little girl tries to match the quality of her father’s music-making in this charming little book by rapper Ludacris. Daddy and Me and the Rhyme to Be by Chris Bridges and Halcyon Person has a full review here!
The Courage to Dream
The Courage to Dream tells the story of Assata, a young Wakandan who hopes to become one of the Dora Milaje, the warriors who protect Wakanda. But because of Assata’s disability, she lets go of her dream.
Assata’s light shows through all the same, introducing her to surprising friends: the princess Shuri, the warrior Okoye, and the powerful M’Baku. But only Assata can give herself what she’s missing: the courage to dream.
STAND UP! 10 Mighty Women Who Made a Change
From the New York Times bestselling author of Eloquent Rage comes a powerful, groundbreaking picture book debut introducing young readers to ten revolutionary Black women — both historical and contemporary — who changed the world for the better, inspiring readers today to know their strength, to be brave, and to STAND UP! Full review can be seen here.
Do you have any favorite books that celebrate Black Girl Magic? What would you add to the list?