The MahoganyBooks Children’s Bestsellers list is more than just a look at the Top Five books purchased over the past month from both of our stores and website. It’s a list that takes into account the interests and concerns of African American readers/shoppers regardless of publisher, recency of publication, or book promotions geared at manufacturing sales.
Quite simply, our bestsellers list is a representation of the kinds of literary content that matters to them. #BlackBooksMatter
So without further ado, we present our…
December 2021 | MahoganyBooks Children’s Bestsellers
#1 – The 1619 Project: Born on the Water by Nikole Hannah-Jones
The 1619 Project’s lyrical picture book in verse chronicles the consequences of slavery and the history of Black resistance in the United States, thoughtfully rendered by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones and Newbery honor-winning author Renée Watson.
A young student receives a family tree assignment in school, but she can only trace back three generations. Grandma gathers the whole family, and the student learns that 400 years ago, in 1619, their ancestors were stolen and brought to America by white slave traders.
But before that, they had a home, a land, a language. She learns how the people said to be born on the water survived.
And the people planted dreams and hope,
willed themselves to keep
And the people learned new words
With powerful verse and striking illustrations by Nikkolas Smith, Born on the Water provides a pathway for readers of all ages to reflect on the origins of American identity.
Nikole Hannah-Jones is a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter covering racial injustice for The New York Times Magazine and creator of the landmark 1619 Project. In 2017, she received a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, known as the Genius Grant, for her work on educational inequality. She has also won a Peabody Award, two George Polk Awards, three National Magazine Awards, and the 2018 John Chancellor distinguished journalism award from Columbia University. In 2016, Nikole co-founded the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting, a training and mentorship organization geared towards increasing the numbers of investigative reporters of color.
#2 – The Word Collector by Peter Reynolds
From the beloved bestselling creator of The Dot and our own Happy Dreamer comes an inspiring story about the transformative and profound power of words.
A New York Times Bestseller
Named an Outstanding Literary Work for Children by the NAACP
Some people collect stamps. Some people collect coins. Some people collect art. And Jerome? Jerome collected words . . .
In this extraordinary new tale from Peter H. Reynolds, Jerome discovers the magic of the words all around him — short and sweet words, two-syllable treats, and multisyllable words that sound like little songs. Words that connect, transform, and empower.
From the creator of The Dot, I Am Human, and Happy Dreamer comes a celebration of finding your own words — and the impact you can have when you share them with the world.
Target Age Group: 4-8 years old
#3 – Dream Big Little One by Vashti Harrison
This beautifully illustrated board book edition of instant bestseller Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History showcases women who changed the world and is the perfect goodnight book to inspire big dreams.
Featuring 18 trailblazing black women in American history, Dream Big, Little One is the irresistible board book adaptation of Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History.
Among these women, you’ll find heroes, role models, and everyday women who did extraordinary things – bold women whose actions and beliefs contributed to making the world better for generations of girls and women to come. Whether they were putting pen to paper, soaring through the air or speaking up for the rights of others, the women profiled in these pages were all taking a stand against a world that didn’t always accept them.
The leaders in this book may be little, but they all did something big and amazing, inspiring generations to come.
Target Age Group: 0-8 years old
#4 – Santa in the City by Tiffany D. Jackson
A little girl’s belief in Santa is restored in this ode to the magic of Christmas. This is a holiday gift readers will treasure for years to come!
It’s two weeks before Christmas, and Deja is worried that Santa might not be able to visit her—after all, as a city kid, she doesn’t have a chimney for him to come down and none of the parking spots on her block could fit a sleigh, let alone eight reindeer! But with a little help from her family, community, and Santa himself, Deja discovers that the Christmas spirit is alive and well in her city.
With bold, colorful illustrations that capture the joy of the holidays, this picture book from award-winning author Tiffany D. Jackson and illustrator Reggie Brown is not to be missed.
Target Age Group: 4-8 years old
Tiffany D. Jackson is the author of the Coretta Scott King – John Steptoe Award winner Monday’s Not Coming, and numerous other YA novels. She lives in her hometown of Brooklyn, New York. This is her first picture book.Reggie Brown is an artist and illustrator with a background in corporate graphic design. He lives in San Diego, California. This is his first picture book.
#5 – Black Boy Joy by Kwame Mbalia
THE INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER – FIVE STARRED REVIEWS
Celebrate the joys of Black boyhood with stories from seventeen bestselling, critically acclaimed Black authors—including Jason Reynolds, Jerry Craft, and Kwame Mbalia!
★ Pick up Black Boy Joy for a heavy dose of happiness. —Booklist, starred review
Black boy joy is…
Picking out a fresh first-day-of-school outfit.
Saving the universe in an epic intergalactic race.
Finding your voice–and your rhymes–during tough times.
Flying on your skateboard like nobody’s watching.
And more! From seventeen acclaimed Black male and non-binary authors comes a vibrant collection of stories, comics, and poems about the power of joy and the wonders of Black boyhood.
Contributors include: B. B. Alston, Dean Atta, P. Djèlí Clark, Jay Coles, Jerry Craft, Lamar Giles, Don P. Hooper, George M. Johnson, Varian Johnson, Kwame Mbalia, Suyi Davies Okungbowa, Tochi Onyebuchi, Julian Randall, Jason Reynolds, Justin Reynolds, DaVaun Sanders, and Julian Winters.
Target Age Group: 9-13 years old