#EBEmbracesDiverseBooks: Reading and Creating Together

Do you want to potentially win a Kindle Fire or Amazon gift card, all while expressing your creativity and reading books that will challenge your beliefs? If so, read on!

A+book+cover+of+Kacen+Callender%27s+Felix+Ever+After.

Felix Ever After is just one of this year’s Diverse Books.

Kal Pandit, Bear Hub Staff

East Brunswick is a rich mix of people who bring different cultures, customs, and backgrounds. This spring, Churchill’s and EBHS’s media specialists are working together to promote EB’s shared diversity through literature. They’ve created the EBHS Diverse Books Challenge, which spotlights books that show unique experiences and invites students to creatively reflect on their reading experiences.

Many of this year’s Diverse Books were #OwnVoices books. In other words, they reflect stories of marginalized characters that were written by authors who share a similar marginalized identity. “We wanted to focus on the things students would identify with,” EBHS media specialist Mrs. Benkard tells Bear Hub.

However, only one book was voted as the annual EB Reads book: Kacen Callender’s Felix Ever After. Mrs. Benkard shares: “Despite [protagonist Felix Love’s] last name, he’s never been in love. He thinks he’s one marginalization too far because he’s trans, queer, and Black. And so he is very funny–he sort of acknowledges that that’s a lot.” If you want to get a copy or an ebook of Felix Ever After, you can go to the Media Center’s EB Reads page to do so.

That certainly isn’t the only Diverse Book, though. There are dozens of books to choose from, all of which are diverse in terms of race, culture, sexual orientation, and genre. There will certainly be a book you want to read!

After you read a Diverse Book, you can submit a creative entry to illustrate your reading experience. Project ideas include making a recipe, writing a book review, or creating a “BookTok” video on TikTok, among many others.

If you submit something, you might win a prize! There will be a districtwide drawing for a $100 gift basket that includes a Kindle Fire. And for EBHS students, Amazon gift cards–with a first-place prize of $100–will also be up for grabs, courtesy of the PTSA. For more information about the Diverse Books Challenge and how to get involved, check out this presentation that Mrs. Benkard put together.

There are some exciting books to read this spring (and some great prizes to win). Feel free to share this initiative using the hashtag #EBEmbracesDiverseBooks. Now, get reading and creating, EBHS!