Recently, a reader asked me if I had any recommendations for books with biracial children as the characters. I’ve always had trouble finding books like that, and it is also why long ago I decided that I would write a series of children’s books with my little Moriah as the main character–from board book to chapter book, then adding her little brother as he comes along (he’ll also have his own books). The reader’s question confirmed the notion that there is a market for these books, and that I am not the only person having trouble finding books that are based on interracial families. Typically, most books are related to adoption, or have animals as the characters. These books also tend to focus on an issue (e.g. hair or skin color), rather than just being a “normal” children’s story with a character/family that is biracial/interracial. I think it’s best not to make race the central theme.
So, why read books with interracial families and biracial children as the characters? Easy. Everyone likes to see people who look like them and live as they do. No one wants to feel weird or as if they are the only one. Among other things, a quality book can be used to help your child see the beauty and uniqueness in their family and themselves.
I’ve decided to make a list for you. I have not read all of these books, but I’ve decided that I will. There are other lists out there, but I’ve done a little sifting for you because I enjoy sifting through large amounts of information for the most relevant parts. Since I haven’t read most of these, I suggest checking them out at your library (or requesting they buy them/borrow from another library) before you buy any of these. Enjoy:
Black is Brown is Tan: (can’t believe we haven’t read this and don’t own it. I’d like the paperback version) This book has a brown mommy and a peach daddy. Translation: a black lady married to a white guy. They have two children. The book is written poetically and the central theme seems to be race.
More More More Said the Baby: Three Love Stories: This book simply displays three little babies of different races being loved by an adult. This is a board book perfect for toddlers.
Two Mrs. Gibsons: A little girl tells stories of the different things she notices about her Black grandmother and her Japanese mom.
A Mother for Choco: I read this to my children. We’ve lost it. I don’t know how many times I cried reading this little book. It has animal characters and the theme may be more suited to adoption, but we loved it! This story is about one orphaned animal’s quest to find a mother. Very sweet.
Black, White, Just Right: We’ve read this one from the library before. I only remember that it’s cute. A little girl with a brown mom and peach dad. She talks about what her parents like and how she is similar to them. Some of the reviews for this book bring up some interesting topics.
The Hello Goodbye Window: This book is simply interactions between an interracial family.It is good for preschoolers.
*A Wild Cowboy: A little boy with a wild imagination.
*Ezra Jack Keats’ books typically have a little brown boy as the main character. I love The Snowy Day for it’s illustrations and simplicity.
There is also Dolls Like Me, which is a site I have used for my kids. It is an online store that has all kinds of things for children of color and biracial children. It even has a book section (though most are about single-raced characters). I love this site! I’ve actually only bought one thing from there and daydreamed about getting many others.
So, honestly there aren’t many books out there. Especially for little biracial boys. Yet another thing we take for granted, I suppose. Anyway, I hope this helps anyone who is looking for books. Anyone else should feel free to add to the list.