Seattle's Child

Your guide to a kid-friendly city

Understanding ourselves: Kids' books about emotions, history and managing money

Jeffrey Lee Cheatham II is a children’s book author and creator of the Seattle Urban Book Expo, an organization that provides a platform for black and brown authors to share their literary work. Learn more about him and his family in this Meet the Parent Q&A.

Why is Jane so Mad?

Written by Jeffrey Lee Cheatham II, illustrated by Ebony Glenn

This book’s intention is to show a way to navigate complex emotions that children experience on a daily basis. The book follows Chad, as he figures out a way to cheer up his best friend Jane, who is mad that her father is in the military and has yet to come home. This story also highlights the importance of friendship and understanding, which strengthens as you read it.

Laundry Day

Written and illustrated by Jessixa Bagley

The opening exchange between the two characters, badger siblings Tic and Tac, made it easy for me to finish this story with a smile. Laundry Day centers around the antics of Tic and Tac as they complete the chore of laundry, but hilarity ensues as the siblings turn the simple task into a lighthearted spectacle. It made me feel nostalgic, as I reminisced about funny moments I had in my youth.

A Little Accounting

Written by J.M. Mobley, illustrated by Ishika Sharma

This book can be best used as an educational tool to talk with your children about money, finances and accounting. The illustrations assist with simplifying the concepts of accounting and financial terminologies.

The Stolen Ones and How They Were Missed

Written by Dr. Marcia Tate Arunga, illustrated by Isaiah Townsend

Gripping and educational, this this book deals with the transatlantic slave trade and the perspective of the African continent. I love how it introduces a narrative that we rarely read about slavery, following the villages that were directly affected when a member was stolen for slavery. I enjoyed the Kiswahili language weaved throughout the allegory.

Jessixa Bagley is an award-winning author and illustrator from Portland. Jessixa has earned many accolades and awards, including a Fall 2015 Junior Library Guild Selection and the SCBWI 2016 Golden Kite Award.

J.M. Mobley is a senior business consultant and accounting professor for community colleges. A Little Accounting was written as a gift to his son, and to encourage families to talk about finances with their children.

Dr. Marcia Tate Arunga is an educator and business owner, and was named the first-ever dean of The Evergreen State College’s Tacoma Program. Her work is centered around entrepreneurship, African history and love for her community.

More book picks:

Stories with girl-driven narratives

Understanding ourselves: Kids’ books about emotions, money and more

Claiming your space: Kids’ books on mindfulness and advocacy

‘My Heart Fills with Happiness,’ and other kids’ books that radiate joy

Great kids’ books also available as audiobooks and in Braille