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Images of Community:
Selected Books for Children and Young Adults

Compiled by Megan Schliesman
© 2011 Cooperative Children's Book Center; updated annually

For children and teens, "community" is typically defined by the people they know and the place in which they live. As they mature, their sense of community can expand, incorporating new people they meet through proximity but also through shared interests and even activism. This list was developed to suggest ways to think about and talk about community with children and teens, with the hope that the books on it will inspire you to think of others.

This bibliography was inspired by an earlier version created by Kathleen T. Horning and Ginny Moore Kruse for a presentation at the Children's Literature New England Institute in Cambridge, Massachussetts, in August, 1997.


Click on underlined book titles to see the CCBC review of the book, and/or the cover image.
Complete list of CCBC bibliographies


Reaching Out: Finding and Creating Community (Picture Books)

    Bunting, Eve. One Green Apple. Illustrated by Ted Lewin. Clarion, 2006. 32 pages. Ages 5-8

    Campoy, F. Isabel and Theresa Howell . Maybe Something Beautiful: How Art Transformed a Neighborhood. Illustrated by Rafael López. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016. 32 pages. Ages 5-9

    De Veaux, Alexiz. An Enchanted Hair Tale. Illustrated by Cheryl Hanna. Harper & Row, 1987. 40 pages. Ages 5 - 10

    Durango, Julia. The One Day House. Illustrated by Bianca Diaz. Charlesbridge, 2017. 32 pages. Ages 4-8

    Falwell, Cathryn. David's Drawings. Lee & Low, 2001. 32 pages. Ages 4 - 7

    Figueredo, D.H.. When This World Was New. Illustrated by Enrique O. Sanchez. Lee & Low, 1999. 32 pages. Ages 4 - 8

    Fleishman, Paul. Weslandia. Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes. Candlewick, 1999. 32 pages. Ages 6-9

    Greenfield, Eloise. The Friendly Four. Illustrated by Jan Spivey Gilchrist. Amistad / HarperCollins, 2006. 47 pages. Ages 5-8

    Haseley, Dennis. Crosby. Illustrated by Jonathan Green. Harcourt, Brace, 1996. 32 pages. Ages 7 - 11

    McCully, Emily Arnold. An Outlaw Thanksgiving. Dial, 1998. 40 pages. Ages 5-9

    McLerran, Alice. Roxaboxen. Illustrated by Barbara Cooney. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard, 1991.

    Mochizuki, Ken. Baseball Saved Us. Illustrated by Dom Lee. Lee & Low, 1993. 32 pages. Ages 7 - 11

    Williams, Karen Lynn and Khadra Mohammed . Four Feet, Two Sandals. Illustrated by Doug Chayka. Eerdmans, 2007. 32 pages. Ages 7-11


Reaching Out: Finding and Creating Community (Fiction)

    Acioli, Socorro. The Head of the Saint. Translated by Daniel Hahn. U.S. edition: Delacorte Press, 2016. 181 pages. 12 and older

    Baskin, Nora Raleigh. Anything But Typical. Simon & Schuster, 2009. 195 pages. Ages 10 - 13

    Bauer, A. C. E.. Come Fall. Random House, 2010. 231 pages. Ages 10 - 13

    Brooks, Martha . True Confessions of a Heartless Girl. Melanie Kroupa Books / Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2003. 192 pages. Ages 14 - 18

    Bruchac, Joseph. March Toward the Thunder. Dial, 2008. 298 pages. Ages 12 and older

    Castellucci, Cecil and Jim Rugg . The Plain Janes. Minx, 2007. 172 pages. Ages 13-16

    Curtis, Christopher Paul. Elijah of Buxton. Scholastic Press, 2007. 341 pages. Ages 10-14

    DiCamillo, Kate . Because of Winn-Dixie. Candlewick Press, 2000. 182 pages. Ages 9 - 12

    Dole, Mayra Lazara. Down to the Bone. HarperTeen / HarperCollins, 2008. 367 pages. Age 14 and older

    Ellis, Deborah. The Heaven Shop. Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 2004. 186 pages. Ages 10-14

    Frost, Helen. Spinning Through the Universe: a Novel in Poems from Room 214. Frances Foster Books / Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004. 93 pages. Ages 10-13

    Gaiman, Neil. The Graveyard Book. Illustrated by Dave McKean. HarperCollins, 2008. 312 pages. Ages 10-14

    Grimes, Nikki. Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel. Illustrated by R. Gregory Christie. Putnam, 2009. 74 pages. Ages 6 - 9

    LaRochelle, David. Absolutely, Positively, Not . . .. Arthur A. Levine Books / Scholastic Press, 2005. 224 pages. Ages 12 and older

    Lynch, Chris. Slot Machine. HarperCollins, 1995. 240 pages. Ages 13 - 16

    Mass, Wendy. Every Soul a Star. Little, Brown, 2008. 322 pages. Ages 10-14

    Nielsen, Susin. Word Nerd. Tundra, 2008. 248 pages. Ages 10-14

    O'Connor, Barbara. Greetings from Nowhere. Frances Foster Books / Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008. 198 pages. Ages 9-12

    Reinhardt, Dana . How to Build a House. Wendy Lamb Books / Random House, 2008. 227 pages. Age 14 and older

    Reynolds, Jason. The Boy in the Black Suit. Atheneum, 2015. 255 pages. Age 13 and older

    Sheth, Kashmira. Boys without Names. Balzer & Bray/HarperCollins, 2010. 320 pages. Ages 9-13


Pulling Together: Communities in Action (Picture Books)

    Borden, Louise. The A+ Custodian. Illustrated by Adam Gustavson. Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2004. 38 pages. Ages 5-8

    Brown, Craig. Barn Raising . Greenwillow / HarperCollins, 2002. 32 pages. Ages 5 - 8

    Fleming, Candace. Boxes for Katje. Illustrated by Stacey Dressen-McQueen. Melanie Kroupa Books / Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2003. 36 pages. Ages 6 - 9

    Graham, Bob. A Bus Called Heaven. U.S. edition: Candlewick Press, 2012. 40 pages. Ages 3-7

    Johnson, Angela. A Sweet Smell of Roses. Illustrated by Eric Velasquez. Simon & Schuster, 2005. 32 pages. Ages 6-9

    Judge, Lita. One Thousand Tracings: Healing the Wounds of World War II. Hyperion, 2007. 32 pages. Ages 6-10

    Kittinger, Jo S. The House on Dirty-Third Street. Illustrated by Thomas Gonzalez. Peachtree, 2012. 32 pages. Ages 6-9

    Lyon, George Ella. You and Me and Home Sweet Home. Illustrated by Stephanie Anderson. A Richard Jackson Book / Atheneum, 2009. 40 pages. Ages 4 - 8

    McKissack, Patricia C. . Goin' Someplace Special. Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney. An Anne Schwartz Book / Atheneum, 2001. 32 pages. Ages 5 - 9

    Meyer, Susan Lynn. New Shoes. Illustrated by Eric Velasquez. Holiday House, 2015. 32 pages. Ages 5–8

    Miller, William. Rent Party Jazz. Illustrated by Charlotte Riley-Webb. Lee & Low, 2001. 32 pages. Ages 7 - 11

    Muth, Jon J.. Stone Soup. Scholastic Press, 2003. 32 pages. Ages 5 - 8

    Nelson, Vaunda Micheaux. The Book Itch: Freedom, Truth and Harlem's Greatest Bookstore. Illustrated by R. Gregory Christie. Carolrhoda, 2015. 36 pages. Age 8 and older

    Newhouse, Maxwell. The Weber Street Wonder Work Crew. Tundra, 2010. 24 pages. Ages 4 - 7

    Rael, Elsa Okon. What Zeesie Saw on Delancy Street. Illustrated by Marjorie Priceman. Simon & Schuster, 1996. 32 pages. Ages 5 - 8

    Ramsey, Calvin Alexander and Gwen Strauss . Ruth and the Green Book. Illustrated by Floyd Cooper. Carolrhoda, 2010. 32 pages. Ages 6 - 9

    Rockliff, Mara. My Heart Will Not Sit Down. Illustrated by Ann Tanksley. Alfred A. Knopf, 2012. 32 pages. Ages 4-8

    Sneve, Virginia Driving Hawk. The Christmas Coat: Memories of My Sioux Childhood. Illustrated by Ellen Beier. Holiday House , 2011. 32 pages. Ages 4-8

    Williams, Vera B.. A Chair for My Mother. Greenwillow, 1982. Ages 4 - 9

    Williams, Vera B.. Music, Music for Everyone. Greenwillow, 1984. Ages 3 - 9

    Winter, Jeanette. Nasreen's Secret School: A True Story from Afghanistan. Beach Lane, 2009. 40 pages. Ages 6 - 10


Pulling Together: Communities in Action (Fiction)

    Branford, Henrietta. Fire, Bed & Bone. U.S. edition: Candlewick Press, 1998. 122 pages. Ages 10 - 12

    Cartaya, Pablo. The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora. Viking, 2017. 236 pages. 10-13 years

    Connor, Leslie. Crunch. Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins, 2010. 330 pages. Ages 10 - 13

    Fleischman, Paul. Seedfolks. Joanna Cotler Books/HarperCollins, 1997. 69 pages. Ages 9 - 13

    Joseph, Lynn. The Color of My Words. Joanna Cotler Books/HarperCollins, 2000. 138 pages. Ages 10 - 14

    Karr, Kathleen . Gilbert & Sullivan Set Me Free. Hyperion , 2003. 226 pages. Ages 12 -15

    Krishnaswami, Uma. Book Uncle and Me. Illustrated by Julianna Swaney. Groundwood, 2016. 149 pages. Ages 7-10

    Patron, Susan. Lucky for Good. Illustrated by Erin McGuire. Atheneum, 2011. 224 pages. Ages 8-11

    Watson, Renée. Piecing Me Together. Bloomsbury, 207. 264 pages. Age 12 and older

    Williams-Garcia, Rita. One Crazy Summer. Amistad / HarperCollins, 2010. 218 pages. Ages 8-12


Pulling Together: Communities in Action (Non-Fiction)

    Abirached, Zeina. A Game for Swallows: To Die, to Leave, to Return. Translated by by Edward Gauvin from the French. U.S. edition: Graphic Universe, 2012. 188 pages. Age 12 and older

    Bartoletti, Susan Campbell. Kids on Strike!. Houghton Mifflin, 1999. 208 pages. Ages 11 - 16

    Bausum, Ann. With Courage and Cloth: Winning the Fight for a Women's Right to Vote. National Geographic, 2004. 111 pages. Ages 11-14

    Finkelstein, Norman H.. Schools of Hope: How Julius Rosenwald Helped Change African American Education. Calkins Creek / Highlights, 2014. 80 pages. Ages 11-14

    Krull, Kathleen. Harvesting Hope: The Story of Cesar Chavez. Illustrated by Yuyi Morales. Harcourt, 2003. 48 pages. Ages 5 - 9

    Levine, Ellen. Darkness Over Denmark: The Danish Resistance and the Rescue of the Jews. Holiday House, 2000. 164 pages. Ages 11 - 14

    Martin, Jacqueline Briggs. Farmer Will Allen and the Growing Table. Illustrated by Eric-Shabazz Larkin. Afterword by Will Allen. Readers to Eaters, 2013. 32 pages. Ages 5 - 14

    Partridge, Elizabeth. Marching for Freedom: Walk Together, Children, and Don't You Grow Weary. Viking, 2009. 72 pages. Ages 11 and older

    Ruelle, Karen Gray and Deborah Durland DeSaix . The Grand Mosque of Paris: A Story of How Muslims Rescued Jews During the Holocaust. Holiday House, 2009. 40 pages. Ages 9 - 12



This list may be reproduced and distributed by educational and/or nonprofit organizations so long as credit is given to the Cooperative Children's Book Center, School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison.



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