What if all of Malden read the same book?

2018 Companion Books

Malden Reads is pleased to announce the selection of companion books for young readers, all of which complement the themes of the 2018 main book selection, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. These books were chosen by a group of educators, librarians, and other individuals in the community offering their support and input.

The following themes will be a focus of Malden Reads programming in 2018: understanding the perspective of youth, addressing the challenges of racial and income inequalities, listening to others with different viewpoints, and finding one’s voice and the courage to stand up for what one believes in.

Malden Reads is pleased to provide these books to students to read in the Malden schools, along with options to participate in programming. The books will also be available for loan at the Malden Public Library for Malden families. Until December 24, they will be available for purchase at the Malden Pops Up Gallery Gift Shop at 480 Main Street, and at MATV beginning in January.

Nonprofit organizations that are interested in receiving a small number of copies of the 2018 book selections for use with children should email

All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely  (Grades 7–8)
Written by two award-winning authors from the points of view of two different characters, All American Boys tells the story of two teens – one black, one white – who experience a police officer’s act of violence against the black teen. A 2016 Coretta Scott King Author Honor book and recipient of the Walter Dean Myers Award for Outstanding Children’s Literature.


Patina by Jason Reynolds  (Grades 5–6)
“Writing in Patty’s voice, Reynolds creates a fully dimensional, conflicted character whose hard-earned pragmatism helps her bring her relay team together, negotiate the social dynamics of the all-girls, mostly white private school she attends, and make the best of her unusual family lot.” (Kirkus Reviews online, 7/2/17) A New York Times Notable Children’s Book.


Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan  (Grades 3–5)
The story of a Pakistani-American Muslim girl who is trying to stay true to her family’s culture while also blending in at school after tragedy strikes her community. Like our main book choice this year, Amina’s Voice is about a girl struggling to find her voice and the strength to tell her story. A Washington Post Best Children’s Book of 2017.


The Colors of Us by Karen Katz  (Grades 1–2) 
Seven-year-old Lena is going to paint a picture of herself. She wants to use brown paint for her skin. But when she and her mother take a walk through the neighborhood, Lena learns that brown comes in many different shades…and begins to see her familiar world in a new way. (from the Publisher, Square Fish)


The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles   (Grades 1–2)
A picture book showing the true story of the courageous Ruby Bridges, the six-year old girl who entered a white school in New Orleans in 1960. While white families refused to send their children to the same school as Ruby, leaving Ruby to be educated alone, Ruby persevered.


Blue Sky, White Stars by Sarvinder Naberhaus  (Pre-K to Grade 3)
As described by the Horn Book, this story “highlights an impressive array of settings and topics, touching on education, the space program, military service (especially by people of color), sports, social justice, the office of the president, the Statue of Liberty, the role of women in the establishment of the United States, immigration, diversity, and the stunning beauty of the American landscape from coast to coast.”


Little Blue and Little Yellow by Leo Lionni 
(Pre-K to Grade 3)
“Little Blue and Little Yellow are best friends, but one day they can’t find each other. When they finally do, they give each other such a big hug that they turn green! How they find their true colors again concludes a wonderfully satisfying story told with colorful pieces of torn paper and very few words.” (from the Publisher, Knopf Books for Young Readers) A New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year.


This entry was posted on December 15, 2017 by and tagged , , , .

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Upcoming Events:

  • Film: I Am Not Your Negro March 27, 2018 at 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm Malden Public Library, 36 Salem St, Malden, MA 02148, USA This film envisions the book James Baldwin never finished, using thewriter’s original words, as read by Samuel L. Jackson. Alongside richarchival material, the film draws upon Baldwin’s notes on theassassinations of Medgar Evans, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King, explore and bring a fresh perspective to the current racialnarrative in America.
  • Boda Borg! March 28, 2018 at 4:00 pm – 9:00 pm Boda Borg Boston, 90 Pleasant St, Malden, MA 02148, USA Join with other Malden Reads participants ages 7 and up for twohours of questing with free admission to Boda Borg! There will befamily-friendly activities available in the main gathering roomfrom 4–8 pm. Details on how to get tickets and register for a timeslot will be available soon at

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