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For those who’re a reader of kidlit, then it’s greater than possible that you simply’ve heard of Kekla Magoon, prolific creator of over 20 books for youngsters and younger adults. Along with writing books for almost all ages and throughout a variety of genres — from historic fiction to sci-fi to up to date reasonable to image e-book biographies — Magoon has additionally garnered a number of awards and honors for her work. She’s the winner of the John Steptoe New Expertise Award, the Boston Globe Horn Ebook Award, and the NAACP Picture Award. She’s collected quite a few Coretta Scott King Honors in addition to being a Nationwide Ebook Award longlist and finalist creator. In 2021, she obtained the celebrated Margaret Edwards Award, given by the American Library Affiliation for a long-lasting contribution to younger grownup literature.
Throughout the wide-ranging genres and subjects of her work, Magoon typically writes about teenagers and children dealing with injustice in on a regular basis life whereas nonetheless coping with points that really feel relatable, comparable to friendship drama, characters desirous to show themselves, and the ups and downs of coming of age in an advanced world. Her work can run the vary from critical to humorous, however her larger-than-life characters floor her fiction and make them relatable to readers. In terms of her nonfiction, Magoon tends to write down about Civil Rights and American historical past within the second half of the twentieth century, and he or she’s written seven biographies for very younger writers about well-known and influential Black leaders.
There actually isn’t any mistaken place to begin in studying Magoon’s work! Certainly one of her extra acknowledged works is X: A Novel, co-written with Ilyasah Shabazz, which is a novel account of Malcolm X’s teenage years. That’s an awesome novel to choose up, however under are three books that showcase Magoon’s vary as an creator and are all glorious entry factors into her work!
How It Went Down
This YA novel is for certain to be a dialogue starter and is ideal for individuals who are in search of readalikes to The Hate U Give. When Tariq Johnson, a Black teen, is shot by a white man who claims self-defense, Tariq’s complete group is rocked to its core. Magoon takes a premise that feels as if it could be ripped from the headlines and elegantly explores the individuals who encompass Tariq and those that are affected by his demise and the fallout. As readers study concerning the individuals who assume that they know what went down and those that are additional faraway from Tariq’s demise by affected nonetheless, it turns into clear that among the tales battle, and a extra nuanced and complex image of Tariq emerges.
The Season of Styx Malone
Caleb and Bobby Inexperienced are all the time looking out for his or her subsequent massive journey or escapade, they usually know tips on how to make deal. This summer time, they’re itching for one thing extra thrilling than their sheltered small-town life, which is after they meet Styx Malone, an older boy who enlightens them concerning the Nice Escalator Commerce — buying and selling one thing small for one thing barely higher. Styx has concepts that Caleb is particularly enthusiastic about, however when his older buddy’s secrets and techniques come to mild, Caleb finds himself viewing the whole lot — Styx, his household, and his personal desires — in a brand new mild. It is a hilarious center grade novel with tons of journey and humor, however it has a sober undercurrent that shall be an awesome dialog starter for younger readers.
Revolution in Our Time
This nonfiction e-book is aimed toward younger grownup readers, however it’s one that’s important studying for even adults and has garnered quite a few awards and honors. It’s the account of the Black Panther Social gathering, which has typically been maligned and misunderstood all through historical past. The Black Panther Social gathering was based as a group assist group to show Black Individuals about their historical past and to supply assist and group to individuals who had been in any other case focused or weak. Because of this, the Panthers confronted immense backlash from the American authorities, and Magoon particulars the challenges they confronted. This account is full of images, information clippings, and loads of supplemental materials that makes historical past come alive and helps contextualize the historical past of the Panthers within the historical past of slavery, Civil Rights, and Black Lives Matter.
Searching for extra studying suggestions? Try our 20 must-read books about social justice for younger grownup and center grade readers!