10 Books that Inspire Black Boys to Read

Tuesday October 19, 2021 By Barbershop Books

Barbershop Books curated this fun book list just for you!
#HelpTheBabiesRead #BarbershopBooksList

B is for Breathe Cover

B is for Breathe*

Melissa Monroe Boyd

Invites children to explore their feelings.

Ages: 4 – 8

Don't let the pigeon stay up late cover

Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late!

Mo Willems

A funny book from kids’ favorite Pigeon book series.

Ages 4 – 8

No, David! book cover

No, David!

David Shannon

A relatable story about a boy and his mischievous adventures.

Ages 4 – 8

I am Every Good Thing Book Cover

I Am Every Good Thing

Derrick Barnes & Gordon C. James

Lyrically written, this book tells black boys why they ARE “every good thing.”

Ages 4 – 8

Ghost book cover


Jason Reynolds

A realistic tale about a black boy that races against the odds.

Ages 8 – 12

Captain underpants book cover

The Adventures of Captain Underpants

Dav Pilkey

The first adventure of the beloved character that kids can’t resist.

Ages 6 – 9

Goggles book cover


Ezra Jack Keats

While playing in the neighborhood, Peter and his friends discover a cool pair of goggles.

Ages 4 – 8

Gross Greg Book Cover

Gross Greg*

Alvin Irby

A hilarious rhyming story about a boy who loves all things gross.

Ages 4 – 8

Hi! Fly Guy Book Cover

Hi! Fly Guy

Tedd Arnold

Kids can’t resist a fun adventure with the coolest fly around – Fly Guy.

Ages 6 – 9

J.D. and the Great Barber Battle Book Cover

J.D. and the Great Barber Battle

J. Dillard

Find out how a third grader turns his bad haircut into a successful business.

Ages 6 – 9

* This book is available in the Barbershop Books E-Library.

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Why these books?

Black boys are more than the reading challenges they face. They are more than their skin color or hair texture. We celebrate the interests, opinions, feelings and lived experiences that make up who Black boys are and what they want to read. Barbershop Books’ new “10 Books that Inspire Black Boys to Read” blog series provides parents and educators with a diverse collection of high-interest titles that inspire Black boys to read for fun.

We incorporate recommendations from Black boys and highlight their full humanity. Laugh, think, and talk as you read our carefully curated titles with the Black boys in your life. Reading independently is always welcomed, but we invite you to enjoy these fun books together. The books feature in this list are guaranteed to engage avid and reluctant readers alike.

What type of books are included in this list?

Barbershop Books curates books that…

1. Affirm the humanity of Black boys

2. Feature diverse characters

3. Are recommended by Black boys

4. Inspire boys to read for fun

5. Connect to popular book series

6. Involve humor

7. Involve action and adventure

8. Are available in the Barbershop Books E-library

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