The CBC Diversity initiative was founded in 2012, as part of the Children’s Book Council’s commitment to promoting diverse voices in literature for young people. We believe that all children deserve to see their world reflected in the books they read. We recognize that diversity takes on many forms, including differences in race, religion, gender, geography, sexual orientation, class, and ability.
In addition to championing diverse authors and illustrators, CBC Diversity strives to open up the publishing industry to a wider range of employees. We’ve taken an active role in recruiting diverse candidates, participating in school career fairs and partnering with We Need Diverse Books on its summer internship program.
Yehudi Mercado, author of Sci-Fu, shares a graphic novel list recommended by characters from his book Sci-Fu. Check out the preview below and the full list on the Multicultural Children’s Book Day website.
1. Wax’s pick
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 3: Stardust Crusaders by Hirohiko Araki
Wax is all about music. It’s the life force that flows through him. I imagine he would really tear into an action-packed manga about a troubled kid who thinks he’s possessed with a demon, but it turns out to be a superpower called “A Stand.” Many characters are named after famous musicians like Ronnie James Dio, Iggy Pop and Terrence Trent Darby. [graphic novel, ages 14 and up]
2. Pirate Polly’s pick
A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel by Madeleine L’Engle and Hope Larson
Pirate Polly would have resisted reading A Wrinkle in Time, thinking was for too cool for it, but as soon she opened this dimension-bending epic about a troubled tween searching for her scientist father through space and time, she was hooked. [graphic novel, ages 8 and up]
3. Cooky P’s pick
Jake the Fake Keeps it Real Hardcover by Craig Robinson and Adam Mansbach, illustrated by Keith Knight
Cooky P knows he’s not the smartest (like D), or the coolest (like Pirate Polly), or the most talented (like Wax), so he would relate to the middle-grader who fakes his way into an elite music and arts magnet school. [notebook novel, ages 8 and up]
This is my fan art for the 10th anniversary of Gene Luen Yang’s incredible graphic novel “American Born Chinese.” I started working with Gene on the Avatar books before I read this work of his. Its reputation preceded it (it deservedly won just about ALL the awards), and I had already gotten to know Gene and his writing by the time I picked it up—or so I thought. ABC’s structure threw me off at first. It was really challenging. Abrasive. Discordant. This wasn’t the story I had imagined and built up in my head from all of my friends’ and colleagues’ rave reviews. Halfway through I wasn’t sure I liked it. I wondered, “How is he going to tie all of this together?” And then BAM. He did. And the story and message were all the more powerful for taking me somewhere I wasn’t expecting to go. For challenging my expectations. How could I have presumed to know Gene’s story? And why would I have wanted him to tell it to me in a way that was comfortable and familiar to me? Powerful art and storytelling SHOULD challenge the audience. They should come from a specific point of view. Bravo, Gene!
Check out this incredible fan art celebrating Gene Luen Yang’s American Born Chinese – from
Airbender co-creator Bryan Konietzko! @bryankonietzko @geneluenyang @macmillanchildrensbooks @firstsecondbooks
National Ambassador Gene Luen Yang Celebrates Children’s Book Week with Raina Telgemeier
In celebration of the 97th annual Children’s Book Week, National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Gene Luen Yang appeared in conversation with friend and fellow graphic novelist Raina Telgemeier at the San Francisco Public Library! @firstsecondbooks @graphixbooks
Gene Luen Yang Lends Support to Highlight the Transformation of Libraries as 2016 National Library Week Honorary Chair
“Libraries were such an important part of my childhood, and they’re an important part of my life today. I visit my local library to research, to read, to write, and to be inspired. I’m deeply grateful for our nation’s libraries and librarians.”
— National Ambassador Gene Luen Yang @americanlibraryassoc