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Recommended Reading List

This list of recommended books was compiled by the California School Library Association, January 2012. It is reprinted here by permission.

Preschool - Grade 2

The Christmas Coat: Memories of My Sioux Childhood by Virginia Driving Hawk Sneve. Holiday House, 2011. (Native American, American Indian Youth Literature Award, 2012)

The House Baba Built: An Artist’s Childhood in China by Ed Young. Little, Brown, 2011. (Asian/Pacific American Picture Book Award, 2012)

Our California/ Nuestra California by Pam Munoz Ryan. Charlesbridge, 2008. (California, 2013 Read Across America official selection)

Redwoods by Jason Chin. Flashpoint, 2009. (Asian American, California Redwoods, FOCAL Award, 2010)

Unspoken: a story from the Underground Railroad by Henry Cole. Scholastic, 2012. (African-American, wordless picture book)

Grades 3 - 5

Chanukah Lights by Michael J. Rosen. Candlewick Press, 2011. (Jewish-American, Sydney Taylor Book Award  Younger Readers, 2012)

Coyote Solstice Tale by Thomas King. Groundwood, 2009. (Native American Folktale, American Indian Youth Literature Award, 2012)

Landed by Milly Lee. Farrar, Straus, & Giroux, 2006. (Chinese Immigrants at Angel Island in San Francisco, early 1900s, FOCAL Award, 2009)

Me, Frida by Amy Novesky. Abrams, 2010. (Latino, Frida Kahlo in 1930s San Francisco, FOCAL Award, 2011)

The Mangrove Tree: Planting Trees to Feed Families by Susan L. Roth and Cindy Trumbore. Lee & Low, 2011. (Multicultural, Jane Addams Award/Books for Younger Children, 2012)

Grades 6 – 8

Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan. Scholastic, 2002. (Latino, Mexican farmworkers during Great Depression years in California, FOCAL Award, 2008)

The Great Wall of Lucy Wu by Wendy Wan-Long Shang. Scholastic, 2011. (Asian-American, Asian/Pacific American Children’s Picture Book Award, 2012)

Letters from the Corrugated Castle by Joan Blos. Atheneum, 2008. (CA Gold Rush, John & Patricia Beatty Award, 2010)

Music Was It: Young Leonard Bernstein by Susan Goldman Rubin. Charlesbridge Publishing, 2011. (Jewish-American, music,  Sydney Taylor Book Award, Older Readers, 2012)

Steinbeck’s Ghost by Lewis Buzbee. Fievel & Friends, 2008. (Salinas, CA & John Steinbeck, John & Patricia Beatty Award, 2009)

Grades 9 - 12

Orchards by Holly Thompson. Delacorte, 2011. (Asian-American, written in verse, Asian/Pacific American Young Adult Literature Award, 2012)

No Crystal Stair: A Documentary Novel of the Life and Work of Lewis Michaux, Harlem Bookseller By Vaunda Micheaux Nelson. Carolrhoda, 2011. (African-American, Boston Globe/Horn Book Fiction Award, 2012)

The Berlin Boxing Club by Robert Sharenow. HarperCollins, (Jewish-American, Sydney Taylor Book Award/Teen Readers, 2012)

Every child deserves a chance to learn and no child succeeds alone.

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