Short Stories You Won’t Want to Put Down
“Flying Lessons & Other Stories”edited by Ellen Oh, written by Kwame Alexander, Kelly J. Baptist, Soman Chainani, Matt de la Peña, Tim Federle, Grace Lin, Meg Medina, Walter Dean Myers, Tim Tingle, and Jacqueline Woodson
Ellen Oh, co-founder of We Need Diverse Books, brings you an anthology of stories with distinct, diverse voices written by award-winning middle grade authors you know and love and those you’ll love after reading this book. From beginning to end, the short stories whisk the reader away on a journey through stories that are both relatable and eye-opening. You’ll meet basketball enthusiasts, empowered young women, writers, storytellers, and more as you get to know kids just like you. Kids who want to carve their own path, have first crushes, experience discrimination, have family struggles, have a hard time making new friends, and dream big dreams. Entertaining and inspiring to the very last page.
“Eight Princesses and a Magic Mirror” written by Natasha Farrant, illustrated by Lydia Corry
Join a magical mirror on a whirlwind adventure to discover what being an “excellent” princess means. What the mirror finds are eight princesses: one who outwits knights, one who saves her kingdom, one who finds inner strength, one who questions everything, one who befriends animals, one who collects stories, one who has an enterprising personality, and one who fights to save a community treasure. Does this make them excellent? Learn more and decide for yourself as you read eight short stories, each featuring a different princess with colorful illustrations woven throughout. Unique and entertaining.
“Once Upon an Eid: Stories of Hope and Joy by 15 Muslim Voices” edited by S.K. Ali, Aisha Saeed, Randa Abdel-Fattah, Huda Al-Marashi, Sara Alfageeh, Hanna Alkaf, Ashley Franklin, Asmaa Hussein, Hena Khan, Rukhsana Khan, Ayesha Mattu, Candice Montgomery, N.H. Senzai, Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow, G. Willow Wilson
These 15 relatable short stories written by 15 unique Muslim voices will captivate you and warm your heart with their honesty, character depth, and elements that are relatable for those who celebrate Eid and those who don’t. The full page illustrations at the start of each story set the stage and give you a glimpse into a myriad of Muslim experiences. These stories celebrate what Eid means to different Muslim families (Pakistani, Black, Palestinian, newly converted, and more) with different family structures (extended family, divorced parents, friends, and chosen families), and a variety of traditions (Eid dresses, family recipes, giving back to the community, prayers, and more). There’s no one way to celebrate Eid or be Muslim, all have a legacy to be proud of. As stated in the story Not Only an Only “We’re all Muslims, and that’s all that matters” (p. 213).
“Us, in Progress: Short Stories About Young Latinos” written by Lulu Delacre
Delacre carries you away on a page-turning journey through 12 short stories with 12 Latino voices all inspired by true events. Each story begins with a refrans (translated in the back of the book) that sets the tone and includes a hand drawn portrait of the main character which adds to the realism of the stories. Delacre expertly weaves narratives that illustrate that there is no one way to be or look Latino. Some of the kids are from Cuba, Puerto Rico, United States, Mexico, or elsewhere. Some of the kids are immigrants, US citizens, DREAMERs, or undocumented. Some kids play soccer, ride bike races, play chess, or learn Spanish. Some kids experience loss, personal growth, bias, or trauma. All of the kids find support from family, friends, and/or their community. All are Latino. And all have their own story to tell.