Ghost Boys, written by Jewell Parker Rhodes and published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Hachette, is the Winner in the Books for Older Children category. Ghost Boys is a timely and haunting depiction of two African American boys who die before reaching manhood, victims of violence. Drawing on traditions that view ancestors as guides to the living, author Parker Rhodes imagines these dead boys as healers righting the wrongs of this world. This complex work of magical realism leaves readers wondering about what might have been if these ‘ghost boys’ and others had lived to adulthood. The book imagines a young Emmett Till as a guide to one of these boys and provides the reader with a context to understand the historical nature of the fear-based violence against black men and boys.
Author: Jewell Parker Rhodes
Award: 2019 Winner Book for Older Children