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Featured books by Nikki Giovanni

Reading Rockets recommends the following books by Nikki Giovanni.

Ego-tripping & Other Poems for Young People

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: George Cephas Ford
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

This collection of poems celebrates individuals and communities who face ordinary struggles with extraordinary wit, energy, and strength. The rhythmic language demands to be read aloud. Sepia-toned illustrations add boldness and warmth.

Lincoln and Douglass: An American Friendship

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: Bryan Collier
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The friendship between Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, the abolitionist who was once enslaved, is presented in richly imagined text and collage illustrations.

Rosa

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: Bryan Collier
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Rosa Parks was an ordinary woman who became a hero because she "was not going to give in to that which was wrong." A catalyst for the famous Montgomery Bus boycott in Alabama, she turned the nation's attention to a glaring injustice in our society. Powerful illustrations evoke a time before the Civil Rights era and give the reader a glimpse at a person, her impact, and a period in American history.

Spin a Soft Black Song

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: George Martins
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Each poem, told from the point of view of a young child, speaks to childhood dreams, fears and perceptions, and to the realities of growing up Black in America. This old favorite is becoming a top choice for a new generation of readers.

The Genie in the Jar

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: Chris Raschka
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

A mother encircles her daughter like a bottle around a genie, and teaches her the craft of weaving and the world of possibilities before letting her out on her own. The lyrical poetry envelops the reader like the mother’s arms, and offers gentle protection and loving support.

The Girls in the Circle

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: Cathy Ann Johnson
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Poetic language and gentle illustrations depict girls being girls! Stories have a playful tone and are easy to read.

The Sun is So Quiet

By: Nikki Giovanni
Illustrated by: Ashley Bryan
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

This collection offers children an introduction to poetry through rich imagery and vivid illustrations. The stream-of-consciousness style sticks to familiar childhood themes to keep children engaged.

Interested in wonderful interviews with tween and teen authors? Hop on over to our sister site, AdLit.org, and browse the library.

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"You know you’ve read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend." — Paul Sweeney