When Anti-Racist Booklists Are Not Enough

In response to the killing of George Floyd, our community rallied in the #blacklivesmatter movement by reading and requesting anti-racism books, and through activism. Our police department assisted a non-profit group in blocking the streets and crowd-control for a well-attended protest against racism and police brutality, one of our library patrons wrote and performed a poem , a petition was started and shared to remove a Confederate statue in downtown Statesville, and we at the library responded to our patron’s questions. Teens and adults wanted suggestions and book titles, and as librarians, that is something we can do. Although, we recognize this is not all we should be doing. We are watching webinars provided by the American Library Association, and having tough conversations to help us on our anti-racist journeys.

However, we are librarians, and do want to offer you some booklists for your anti-racist and diversity endeavors.


Backlash by George Yancy

When They Call You a Terrorist by Patrisse Khan-Cullors

Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad

White Rage by Carol Anderson

Begin Again by Eddie S. Glaude Jr.

Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X. Kendi

How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi


Rules for Being a Girl by Candace Bushnell and Katie Cotugno

Go With the Flow by Lily Williams and Karen Scheemann

White Rose by Kip Wilson

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Slay by Brittney Morris

Anger is a Gift by Mark Oshiro

Black Panther & the Crew by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Watch Us Rise by Renee Watson and Ellen Hagan

No More Excuses by Amber J. Keyser

Forgotten Bones by Lois Miner Huey


Bad News for Outlaws by Vaunda Nelson

Almost to Freedom by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

The Dozier School for Boys by Elizabeth A. Murray

Holy Mole! by Caroline McAlister

Red Bird Sings by Gina Capaldi