Growing up in the segregated south in the 1930’s, Benny Andrews learned to Draw What You See (Clarion, $16.99). Drawing workers in the fields and at his local Sunday church service, Andrews became determined to finish his education. Kathleen Benson’s new picture book biography, illustrated with paintings by Andrews himself, captures his incredible story. In both his art and his life, Andrews fought for what he believed in, and his work helped to make room for more overlooked artists of color. This gorgeous picture book is an excellent introduction to his life, and an example to all the young artists who might follow his example. Ages 4-8. Courtney Burtraw

Draw What You See: The Life and Art of Benny Andrews Cover Image
By Kathleen Benson, Benny Andrews (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780544104877
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Clarion Books - January 6th, 2015

Drum Dream Girl (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $16.99) can’t stop dreaming about drums. “Only boys should play drums,” says her father, and forbids her from playing. Still, she daydreams about beating the bongo and finds rhythm in everyday life. Tapping on chairs and stepping in time to imaginary beats, she floats through her days. Award-winning author Margarita Engle tells a beautiful story of empowerment and ambition, based on the life of Millo Castro Zaldarriage, Cuba’s famous female drummer. Coupled with striking illustrations by Rafael Lopez, this book will have readers wanting to dance, drum, and follow their own dreams. Ages 4-8. Kasie Griffitts

Drum Dream Girl: How One Girl's Courage Changed Music Cover Image
By Margarita Engle, Rafael López (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780544102293
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: HMH Books for Young Readers - March 31st, 2015

 “People might say little Mahalia Jackson (Amistad, $17.99) was born with nothing, but she had something all right. A voice that was bigger than she was.” Over the rest of Nina Nolan’s gorgeous picture-book biography, readers learn exactly what Mahalia made of that voice. From singing in her church choir as a child in New Orleans, all the way to performing at the March on Washington, Mahalia spread hope with her gospel music wherever her journey took her. Illustrated with John Holyfield’s warm, vibrant oil paintings, this is a wonderful introduction to this important musical figure. Ages 5-8. Eowyn Randall

Mahalia Jackson: Walking with Kings and Queens Cover Image
By Nina Nolan, John Holyfield (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780060879440
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: HarperCollins - January 27th, 2015