It’s easy to get stuck in a reading rut, falling back on favorite authors and genres. But I believe we can and should challenge ourselves to read outside of our comfort zones.
Reading diversely helps us learn about new cultures, consider new perspectives, and gain confidence through exposure to members of our global community who are different than ourselves. Diversity of authors and characters includes differences in their race, ethnicity, gender, mental health, sexual orientation, religion, and ability to see, move, think, remember, learn, communicate, hear, and participate in social relationships.
Ready to get started? Authors and characters come in all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds, and the experience of reading diversely is different for everyone because of our own unique identities. Here are a few of my favorites.
Many will recognize George Takei from his iconic role on “Star Trek”. In this graphic novel, Takei recounts his childhood in a relocation center for Japanese Americans during World War II. A heartbreaking book about our nation’s history, this is an excellent read for preteens, teens, and adults. Disponible en español.
In this memoir, Jaquira Diaz recalls her early years in Miami and Puerto Rico. With unflinching honesty, Diaz explores themes of friendship, mental illness, addiction, and much more. For fans of emotionally raw and exceptionally written memoirs.
Ginny Moon is a fourteen-year-old girl with autism. After years in foster care,
Ginny has finally found her forever home—but secrets from her past are preventing her from adjusting to her new life. Inspired by the author’s experience as a foster parent, Ludwig has created a powerful novel with an unforgettable narrator. Disponible en español.
Samantha Irby is laugh-out-loud funny. In this collection of essays, she covers everything from the thrills of home ownership to life with Crohn’s disease and her relationship with her wife and stepchildren. Every essay is infused with her signature self-deprecating wit. I highly recommend the audiobook.