On Our Shelves Now
“[A] heartfelt tribute to young people of color and their ‘reflection of resplendent beauty, ancient history ... and irreplaceable value.’ It’s a standout.” ―Publishers Weekly, starred review
Inspired by the groundbreaking work of W. E. B. Du Bois, this beautiful collection brings together an outstanding roster of Black creative voices to honor, celebrate, and foster Black excellence.
The New Brownies’ Book reimagines the very first publication created for African American children in 1920 as a must-have anthology for a new generation. Expanding on the mission of the original periodical to inspire the hearts and minds of Black children across the country, esteemed scholar Karida L. Brown and award-winning artist Charly Palmer have gathered the work of more than fifty contemporary Black artists and writers. The result is a book bursting with essays, poems, photographs, paintings, and short stories reflecting on the joy and depth of the Black experience—an immersive treasure trove that reminds readers of all ages that Black is brilliant, beautiful, and bold.
IMPORTANT HISTORICAL LEGACY: In 1920, W. E. B. Du Bois and the founders of the NAACP published The Brownies’ Book: A Monthly Magazine for Children of the Sun, which included art, stories, letters, and activities to inspire children, share Black history, and celebrate their identities. As the first periodical for African American youth, this was an important work in the history of children’s literature. The New Brownies’ Book revives its mission to inspire the young readers of today.
INCREDIBLE CONTRIBUTORS: This book features the work of talented and exciting Black creators, including playwright and poet Ntozake Shange, writer and editor Damon Young, Def Poetry Jam co-creator and painter Danny Simmons, sociologist and educator Dr. Bertice Berry, children’s book illustrator James E. Ransome, muralist Fabian Williams, collage artist Marryam Moma, and many more.
BEAUTIFUL KEEPSAKE: This collection presents a celebratory array of artwork, from detailed paintings and drawings to photographs and collages. It includes stories meant to be shared by children and adults, offering a way for all families—especially Black families—to connect across generations through the power of literature. With its meaningful content and deluxe packaging, this hardcover volume makes a thoughtful gift for new parents, grandparents, or inquisitive readers of all ages.
- Parents, grandparents, and young readers, especially in the Black community
- Artists and writers inspired by themes of family, community, and empowerment
- Adults and teens who work with and care for young children
- Youth program leaders and community organizers
- Teachers, librarians, and educators
- Fans of the contributing artists and writers
- Art book collectors
- Audiences who seek out racial diversity and representation in the media they consume
- Fans of The Fire This Time, Glory: Magical Visions of Black Beauty, and Black Futures
About the Author
Karida L. Brown is a sociologist, educator, and writer whose research focuses on the relationship between race, social transformations, and communal memory. She is a professor at Emory University and the inaugural Diane Nash Descendants of the Emancipation Chair at Fisk University’s John Lewis Center for Social Justice. She lives in Atlanta.
Charly Palmer is an award-winning fine artist, graphic designer, and illustrator. He was born in Fayette, Alabama, raised in Milwaukee, and currently teaches at Spelman College in Atlanta, where he lives with his wife, Karida Brown. He has illustrated many children’s books, including The Teachers March! How Selma’s Teachers Changed History, My Rainy Day Rocket Ship, and Mama Africa!: How Miriam Makeba Spread Hope With Her Song.
"This is a must-have for Black youth to experience art, photographs, and stories that will entertain the entire family.” —Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
“Sociologist Brown and artist Palmer reimagine W. E. B. DuBois’s early 1900s children’s magazine with a splendid assemblage of essays, poems, and art from Black creators that aim to lavish ‘resounding Love’ on Black youth.... Enriched by stunning and expressive acrylics, oils, and collages from Palmer and other artists, this serves as a heartfelt tribute to young people of color and their ‘reflection of resplendent beauty, ancient history... and irreplaceable value.’ It’s a standout.” —Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“A beautifully curated collection.” —Atlanta Journal-Constitution
“In 1920, W.E.B. Du Bois helped found The Brownies’ Book, a monthly magazine of games, stories, and pictures, all designed, as the inside cover of each issue declared, ‘for all children but especially for ours.’ In this new edition, sociologist Karida L. Brown and her husband, visual artist Charly Palmer, deliver the exuberance of the original to today’s kids and parents…. With work ranging from the hilariously lighthearted to the breathtakingly empowering, this book consoles, explains, entertains, and inspires us all.” —Oprah Magazine
“An astounding collection celebrating Black joy and creativity.” —BookPage, Starred Review
“Brown and Palmer have curated a kaleidoscopic vision of diasporic Black experience, including fiction, historical narrative, poetry, and visual content, geared to be accessible to young readers, but appealing to all.” —Hyperallergic