In celebration of Black History Month, we’ll be highlighting a diverse range of books, all written by Black American authors, all of which celebrate and prioritize the 2024 theme, “African Americans and the Arts”. We will be exploring the key influence African Americans have had in the fields of “visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression.” We’ll be featuring a title every day through the month of February.

The Association for the Study of African American Life and History discusses this years theme stating, “African American art is infused with African, Caribbean, and the Black American lived experiences. In the fields of visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression, the African American influence has been paramount. African American artists have used art to preserve history and community memory as well as for empowerment. Artistic and cultural movements such as the New Negro, Black Arts, Black Renaissance, hip-hop, and Afrofuturism, have been led by people of African descent and set the standard for popular trends around the world. In 2024, we examine the varied history and life of African American arts and artisans.”

Todays work is Walter Dean Myers’ Jazz. There’s a crazy syncopation /and it’s tearing through the nation / and it’s bringing sweet elation / to every single tune./ It’s Jazz

One of TIME’s 100 Best Children’s Books of All Time

Fifteen poems, infused with the rhythm and wordplay of jazz music, are paired with bold, stylized illustrations of performers and dancers to convey the history and breadth of this unique musical style. From bebop to New Orleans, from ragtime to boogie, and every style in between, Jazz takes readers on a musical journey from jazz’s beginnings to the present day.
Created by a celebrated father-son team, Jazz is a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and a Kirkus Best Children’s Books Editor’s Choice.

In addition to its colorful and lyrical celebration, the book includes a brief introductory essay about the history and form of jazz, as well as a timeline and glossary of jazz terms.

This concludes our series of blog posts celebrating Black History Month! Thank you for celebrating books by Black authors this month and all year!