African American speculative fiction for kids

Again not exactly PBS but I’d like to think if Reading Rainbow were still in production or any number of shows where reading and books were showcased for youth, some of these books would be found on it. I also think that PBS could/should adapt some of these to provide different stories to their audience that actually would allow them to live up to their motto of “Being More” instead of being known as the Zombie BBCAmerica channel or the purveyor of warmed over-leftover British programming.


After Edi read my SLJ article, she suggested I compile a list of African American speculative fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, paranormal, time travel, alternate history, dystopia, horror, etc.) books for children. As usual, I enlisted the help of others, and below is the list Edi, Doret, Ari, and I compiled. If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment. I did not include speculative fiction titles that might appeal to teens—just those specifically published for young readers (MG/YA).

Speculative Fiction by US-based Authors of African Descent

1. Justice and Her Brothers by Virginia Hamilton (1978)

2. Dustland by Virginia Hamilton (1980)

3. The Gathering by Virginia Hamilton (1981)

4. Sweet Whispers, Brother Rush by Virginia Hamilton (1982)

5. The Magical Adventures of Pretty Pearl by Virginia Hamilton (1983)

6.  Shadow of the Red Moon by Walter Dean Myers (1995)

7. Trapped between the Lash and the Gun

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