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We Need Diverse Books

The dictionary definition of diverse is, "showing a great deal of variety, very different". Their example is a very diverse population.

So why is this important in books?

Many of us, especially on NMG, love books and inhale them, looking for characters to sympathize with. Books tell hundreds of different stories, each one a unique idea of a character.

But how unique are they?

In 2016, people of color made up 22% of all children's books. In 2017, 79 children's books featuring LGBT+ characters were published by mainstream publishers. Out of the 22 million books sold on Amazon, less than 0.003 of them featured disabled protagonists.

How does this impact children's books in particular?

If children and teens are only given books featuring one kind of protagonist over and over and over, it begins to sink in that perhaps, this is the only successful protagonist. One of the reasons books are so amazing is because you can pick them up and understand the character. But it's important to see yourself reflected in many different kinds of books, which is a rarity. Not only that, but many of these diverse books are about why the character is diverse, instead of about a character who just so happens to be diverse.

Plus, in order to understand one another better as people, it's very important that we can learn to see things from another person's viewpoint. this also involves finding many different sources and learning how different facets of a person can impact how they go through life. As a result, it's important to have books that show all different kinds of people, not one person.

How can we help?

I have picked up many books with diverse characters that have been recommended to me by someone on NMG. Plenty of books are out there, waiting to be read, but you might not know about them because you haven't heard about them. if you pick up a book you love and then recommend it to a friend, they might love it as well, and might give it to an adult to read. Say the adult is a teacher, and purchases the book to put in their class. Now many more people will read it, all because you picked it up. In order to cause these butterfly effects, we need to start spreading the word.

I've included a short form next, which you can fill out each time you read a book that you think someone needs to read. Please fill out all categories, and then watch the butterfly effect of diverse books spread from one person to the next.

The Form:





Summary (No spoilers!):

Why is it diverse?

Age rating:

Your rating: {Optional}




You need to be a member of NMG Members to add comments!


  • hey look, another updated form

    Title: Shadowhunters

    Author: Cassandra Clare (various other authors for some of the spinoffs)

    Genre: Fantasy... ? xD

    Summary (No spoilers!): Long ago in medieval times, demons ran around all over the world and being evil and generally causing chaos. Then, a man named Jonathan Shadowhunter was visited by an angel named Raziel, who gave him the Mortal Instruments (The Mortal Cup, The Mortal Sword, and The Mortal Mirror). The angel put his own blood in the cup and had Jonathan drink from it (sorry for grossness xD), and he became the first Shadowhunter, a race of sort of superhumans dedicated to ridding the world of demons. If you’d like more (non-spoilery) background, please PM me and I will be happy to explain more.
    There are three current series (but more to come) - The Infernal Devices, which takes place in 1870s England, The Mortal Instruments, which takes place in modern New York, and The Dark Artifices (the most diverse out of all of them), which takes place in Los Angeles (and technically a couple of other places) a couple of years after the end of The Mortal Instruments series. In each series, the main characters struggle with the fight against the main villain, smaller villains, love, injustices, and all sorts of things.

    Why is it diverse? There are a lot of diverse characters, especially in the Mortal Instruments and Dark Artifices. In all three series there are many strong characters of different sexualities, races, and gender identities; in the TDA series there is a strong trans female character of color, a character with autism, a kickbutt Latina young woman, a possible poly relationship, and strong messages about acceptance and injustice. Also, there are four different ‘species’ of the Downworld - not Shadowhunters, not humans, not demons - faeries, werewolves, vampires, and warlocks. The ‘Downworlders’ are often discriminated against, a theme in all of the books. The Shadowhunters’ relationships with Downworlders are tense, to say the least, and the main characters in each series try to fight injustices Shadowhunters commit against Downworlders, which, when you think about it, is like real-world struggles of minorities against powerful majorities.

    Age rating: uhh the first three Mortal Instruments books 12+; the last three, the Infernal Devices series, and the Dark Artifices series maybe 14-15+

    Your rating: {Optional} my favorite series ever OwO

    Other: PLEASE READ IT (keep the age ratings in mind though xD) WE NEED MORE SHADOWHUNTERS FANS ON NMG
      I'VE SEEN IT
      • GOOD
  • Title: The hate u give by Angie Thomas
    Genre: realistic fiction
    Summary: A young African American girl goes through a lot of racism during her childhood.
    Diverse? It is about black communities, and about how a African American girl struggles through the childhood because of the color of her skin.
    My rating is 10\10
    * This book is very good, but it is banned from some schools, so you might have a hard time finding it in your school library *
  • Title: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World

    Author: Shannon and Dean Hale

    Genre: fantasy and super heroes

    Summary (No spoilers!): fourteen year old Doreen Green moved away from sunny California to the suburbs of New Jersey. She must start at a new school, make new friends and continue to hide her fluffy tail. Yep, Doreen has the powers of... a squirrel! After failing at several attempts to find her new BFF, Doreen feels lonely and trapped, like a caged animal. Then one day Doreen uses her extraordinary powers to stop a group of troublemakers from causing mischief in the neighbourhood, and her whole life changes. Everyone at the school is talking about it! Doreen contemplates becoming a full-fledged Super Hero. And thus, Squirrel Girl is born! She saves cats from trees, keeps the sidewalks clean, and prevents vandalism. All is well until a real life Super Villain steps out of the shadows and declares Squirrel Girl as his archenemy. Can Doreen balance being a teenager and a Super Hero? Or will she go... NUTS?

    Why is it diverse? Doreen's friend Ana-Sofìa has dark skin, hearing aids and speaks Spanish. There is also a variety of species in it.

    Age rating: 9+

    Your rating: {Optional}11/10!! I would dare say this is the best book I have ever read. It entertains me every time I reread it and the jokes and humour never get old. It's a great Marvel book and I used to think Squirrel Girl was weak but now she's my favourite hero. I recommend to everyone. Even if you don't like Marvel,this book is amazing, funny and relatable. Doreen even 'writes' little notes at the bottom of the page which makes it seem like she's talking to you.

    Other: If you read it I must tell you about a ship I have. It is the best ship dispite what my friends say.
    • I love this book so much!!!!! Yay! I'm so glad somebody else reads it!!!!!!
  • Title: Rain Reign

    Author: Ann M. Martin

    Genre: Realistic fiction

    Summary (No spoilers!): When Rose Howard’s father lets Rose’s dog Rain out during a rainstorm, Rain goes missing. Rose has to find her dog, even if it means going out of her routines and comfort zone. There is a very powerful plot twist. ;_;

    Why is it diverse? Rose is a misunderstood girl with high-functioning autism obsessed with homonyms. She tells the story.

    Age rating: 11+

    Your rating: {Optional}

    Other: Old favorite I somehow forgot about until today. Beautiful.
  • Title: A Tree Grows In Brooklyn

    Author: Betty Smith

    Genre: Realistic fiction

    Summary (No spoilers!): ATGB is a book that follows Francie Nolan's life at the turn of the centuries. Unlike many books about the 1920s, this is not polished or cute- it is matter of fact about the issues and dangers of Brooklyn.

    Why is it diverse? Francie Nolan is incredibly poor, and ends up having to do drastic things to survive. It also shows the stereotypes of other opinions of certain groups.

    Age rating: This does have some really mature stuff, so mature 12+

    Your rating: {Optional} I absolutely love this book, it is very descriptive and is so interesting. That said, don't read it if you're hungry because of the food descriptions. It also does have some very mature stuff.

  • A lot of books by Raina Telgemeir are diverse, especially "Drama"
    • yes
      I love Drama!
This reply was deleted.

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