Books play an important role as mirrors for children: these stories and characters will affect how they see themselves and the world around them, their motivation to read, and their aspirations to become authors and illustrators of the future. However, finding books that truly reflect the diversity of families in the UK is challenging. Over the past 11 years, fewer than 2% of all authors and/or illustrators of children’s books published in the UK were British people of colour.

BookTrust has put together this booklist to highlight some of their favourite picture books by authors and illustrators of colour.

15 Things Not to Do With a Baby

Author: Margaret McAllister Illustrator: Holly Sterling
Interest level: 2-5

Astro Girl

Author: Ken Wilson-Max
Interest level: 4-6
Reading age: 5+

Bear Moves

Author: Ben Bailey Smith Illustrator: Sav Akyüz
Interest level: 3-5

Burger Boy

Author: Alan Durant Illustrator: Mei Matsuoka
Interest level: 3+
Reading level: 5+

Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets

Author: Hena Khan Illustrator: Mehrdokht Amini
Interest level: 4-6
Reading age: 5+

Daddy Do My Hair: Kechi’s Hair Goes Every Which Way

Author: Tola Okogwu Illustrator: Naomi Wright
Interest level: 4-6
Reading age: 5+

Don’t Make Me Cross

Author: Smriti Prasadam-Halls Illustrator: Angie Rozelaar
Interest level: 2-5

Hip and Hop: You Can Do Anything

Author: Akala Illustrator: Sav Akyuz
Interest level: 3-6
Reading age: 5+

If All the World Were

Author: Joseph Coelho Illustrator: Allison Colpoys
Interest level: 0-5

Is it a Mermaid?

Author: Candy Gourlay Illustrator: Francesca Chessa
Interest level: 4-7
Reading age: 5+

It MUST Have Been You!

Author: Zanib Mian Illustrator: Fatima Mian
Interest level: 5-6
Reading age: 5+

Look Up!

Author: Nathan Bryon Illustrator: Dapo Adeola
Interest level: 4-7
Reading age: 6+

My Hair

Author: Hannah Lee Illustrator: Allen Fatimaharan
Interest level: 3-7
Reading age: 5+

My Village: Rhymes from Around the World

Author: Various Illustrator: Mique Moriuchi Editor: Danielle Wright
Interest level: 3+
Reading age: 7+

Nimesh the Adventurer

Author: Ranjit Singh Illustrator: Mehrdokht Amini
Interest level: 4-7
Reading age: 5+

No Baby No

Author: Grace Nichols Illustrator: Eleanor Taylor
Interest level: 0+
Reading age: 4+

Rastamouse and the Crucial Plan

Author: Michael De Souza Illustrator: Genevieve Webster
Interest level: 5-8
Reading age: 5+

Specs for Rex

Author: Yasmeen Ismail
Interest level: 3+
Reading age: 4+

The Cow Who Fell to Earth

Author: Nadia Shireen
Interest level: 3-6
Reading age: 5-7

The Weaver

Author: Qian Shi
Interest level: 2-5

You’re Safe With Me

Author: Chitra Soundar Illustrator: Poonam Mistry
Interest level: 2+
Reading age: 3-6

Wild

Author: Emily Hughes
Interest level: 4+
Reading age: 6+