69 books like Superman Smashes the Klan

By Gene Luen Yang, Gurihiru (illustrator),

Here are 69 books that Superman Smashes the Klan fans have personally recommended if you like Superman Smashes the Klan. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Sunday Funday in Koreatown

Jess Hong Author Of Lovely

From my list on I wish existed when I was a kid.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up Asian American, the lack of representation I felt was constant and palpable. I think often about what it would have meant and how beneficial it could have been had I been able to see myself in picture books as a child. This is a list of books I wish little me could have read growing up because when I read them now they speak to that same vulnerable space in me that I still carry. They are a balm to my heart and mind, making me feel connected to both myself and others that look like me and share similar experiences.

Jess' book list on I wish existed when I was a kid

Jess Hong Why did Jess love this book?

Growing up as a first-generation Korean American my heart ached with love to read this book. It truly celebrates Korean culture and its ties to family. Kim portrays our young protagonist Yoomi, a black and white cat experiencing something everyone has gone through—a bad day while highlighting some of the warmth and joyful things about Korean culture, my favorite topic being food. The end cap of the book features a recipe for kimbap. I love that she does this because growing up my mother would pack me kimbap for lunch and kids would immediately peg it as sushi. Little me would have felt so seen and loved by this book and I’m so happy it exists today.

By Aram Kim,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sunday Funday in Koreatown as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

Yoomi and Daddy are going to Koreatown today! This story celebrates family, resilience, and Korean culture.

Yoomi has planned the perfect Sunday! But the shirt she wants to wear is in the laundry. And she doesn't have the seaweed she needs for a kimbap breakfast.

So Yoomi wears another shirt and eats a different breakfast, and she and Daddy take a bus to Koreatown, where they read Korean books, eat Korean treats such as patbingsu and tteokbokki, and visit Grandma. Though Yoomi's perfect day is filled with mishaps and things don't always go her way, Yoomi learns the advantages of…


Book cover of Watercress

Why am I passionate about this?

As an adoptive parent and a Korean-American immigrant, caring for others is my passion. I was only nine months old when I made the journey to America with my parents, so I only felt “American” growing up. It wasn’t until college that I genuinely started to appreciate my heritage. But perhaps, if I had seen more stories that reflected me, sharing family stories with love and finding hope amidst hardship, maybe I would’ve appreciated and even celebrated my difference a little more. That’s why I love sharing my family stories now. Everyone can relate to them on different levels. 

Ann's book list on picture books about caring for others, sharing family stories with love, and finding hope amidst hardship

Ann Suk Wang Why did Ann love this book?

I love the very real relationship between a child and her parents who embarrass her by bringing their culture to America. But as the story progresses, she learns about their background and how hardships made them who they are.

I can totally relate to this! This beautiful tale reminds me about appreciating one’s culture, though at first I may not like it so much, it is who I wonderfully am.

By Andrea Wang, Jason Chin (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Watercress as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 4, 5, 6, and 7.

What is this book about?

Caldecott Medal Winner
Newbery Honor Book
APALA Award Winner

A story about the power of sharing memories—including the painful ones—and the way our heritage stays with and shapes us, even when we don’t see it. 

New England Book Award Winner
A New York Times Best Children’s Book of the Year
A Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Book

While driving through Ohio in an old Pontiac, a young girl's Chinese immigrant parents spot watercress growing wild in a ditch by the side of the road.  They stop the car, grabbing rusty scissors and an old paper bag, and the whole family wades…


Book cover of American Born Chinese

Sylvie Kantorovitz Author Of Sylvie

From my list on middle-grade depicting different cultures.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was five, my family moved from Morocco to France. We were Jewish in a very homogeneously Catholic world. My French upbringing didn’t include much exposure to other cultures and I often felt uncomfortably different. I would have liked to know more about various lifestyles, cultures, and traditions than those I observed around me. I now love to learn about other cultures through personal accounts, stories, and memoirs. I feel engaged and interested in a way I never experienced with textbooks. Reading about people who live a different life from our own can be an eye-opening experience.

Sylvie's book list on middle-grade depicting different cultures

Sylvie Kantorovitz Why did Sylvie love this book?

This book seems to be three different stories until one realizes they are the same story told in different ways: the most realistic one is the story of young Jin Wang who suffers intensely from the racist mockery of his peers. Then there is the wondrous tale of the Monkey King who wanted to join the other gods and refused to be a monkey. And finally the parable of Danny who hates his caricature of a Chinese cousin. The three strands converge to reveal one truth: the way to save our soul is to accept who we are. 

I particularly loved the character of Wei-Chen who is Jin’s best friend: he is kind, smart, and accepts his origins. 

A bonus: the artwork is very beautiful!

By Gene Luen Yang,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked American Born Chinese as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gene Luen Yang was the fifth the National Ambassador for Young People's Literature and is a MacArthur Fellow, a recipient of what's popularly known as the MacArthur "Genius" Grant.

A tour-de-force by New York Times bestselling graphic novelist Gene Yang, American Born Chinese tells the story of three apparently unrelated characters: Jin Wang, who moves to a new neighborhood with his family only to discover that he's the only Chinese-American student at his new school; the powerful Monkey King, subject of one of the oldest and greatest Chinese fables; and Chin-Kee, a personification of the ultimate negative Chinese stereotype, who…


Book cover of Cicada

Jess Hong Author Of Lovely

From my list on I wish existed when I was a kid.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up Asian American, the lack of representation I felt was constant and palpable. I think often about what it would have meant and how beneficial it could have been had I been able to see myself in picture books as a child. This is a list of books I wish little me could have read growing up because when I read them now they speak to that same vulnerable space in me that I still carry. They are a balm to my heart and mind, making me feel connected to both myself and others that look like me and share similar experiences.

Jess' book list on I wish existed when I was a kid

Jess Hong Why did Jess love this book?

Cicada is one of those quietly brilliant stories that says so much but can also be left to the interpretation of the reader. For me it immediately and intensely made me think of the (Asian) immigrant experience and the racism and classism that come with that. The gorgeous illustrations alone are a reason to pick it up but the story will keep you coming back to it.

By Shaun Tan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Cicada as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

A stunning picture book for anyone who has ever felt unappreciated, from Shaun Tan, Academy Award winner and winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal 2020.

Cicada work in tall building.
Data entry clerk. Seventeen year.
No sick day. No mistake.
Tok Tok Tok!

Cicada works in an office, dutifully working day after day for unappreciative bosses and being bullied by his co-workers. But one day, something truly extraordinary happens . . .

A story for anyone who has ever felt unappreciated, overlooked or overworked but dreams of magic, from Australia's most acclaimed picture book creator, and first BAME winner of…


Book cover of Clark & Lex

Brandon T. Snider Author Of Rube Goldberg and His Amazing Machines

From my list on middle-grade reads full of humor & heart.

Why am I passionate about this?

As someone who was both a funny kid and a lover of superheroes, it was always exciting to find a book where those two things crossed paths. In the young readers' books I’ve written for Marvel and DC Comics, I always try to inject humor where I can. Humor can be healing. If I couldn’t laugh, especially about things that have caused me pain, I don’t know that I would be around today. I love books about funny, sensitive kids with big hearts. The world is a cold place sometimes, but whenever I see a young person making positive change and having fun along the way, it reminds me that anything is possible.

Brandon's book list on middle-grade reads full of humor & heart

Brandon T. Snider Why did Brandon love this book?

I’m a huge fan of the rivalry between Superman and Lex Luthor, so I was excited to check out this new story set during their middle school years–possibly the most dramatic time in a kid’s life.

This Clark is a little spicy, which I enjoyed. I like that he doesn’t always make good choices. In Lex, he finds a brainy outsider searching for a confidant. Brendan Reichs gives us a friendship between boys that feels honest, and Jerry Gaylord’s delightfully expressive art captures their emotions nicely.

There were laughs but also a simmering tension that kept my attention, especially as it related to a little lie that became a big problem. This story is a nice reminder that heroes and villains aren’t born; they’re made.

By Brendan Reichs, Jerry Gaylord (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Clark & Lex as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Being the only kid with powers is tough not being able to use them is even worse! Struggling with understanding why his parents demand he hide his amazing superpowers, Clark has no problem using a bit of super-speed or super-strength to give himself that extra edge as quarterback of the football team or while doing his chores around the farm. And when LuthorCorp holds a competition to find the best and brightest for a summer internship in Metropolis, Clark has no problem using his X-ray vision to cheat his way in if it means getting out of Smallville. Amazingly, Clark…


Book cover of Shattered

Molly J. Bragg Author Of Scatter

From my list on sapphic superhero.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a trans woman who writes sapphic science fiction, fantasy, superhero novels, and contemporary romance. I’m been a huge fan of superheroes my whole life, and Supergirl has been my favorite superhero since I saw the original Helen Slater movie back in the 80s. In addition to being a fan, I’m currently writing a series of sapphic superhero novels called Hearts of Heroes.

Molly's book list on sapphic superhero

Molly J. Bragg Why did Molly love this book?

Lena Martin is given the job of tracking down Shattergirl, a black lesbian superhero who has dropped out of sight. I love this book because it’s not your usual superhero story. 

It takes a dive into how public perception affects who we are willing to accept as heroes, how other people’s preconceptions care wear down marginalized people, and how having to hide parts of yourself can distance you from those around you.

Book cover of Andrea Vernon and the Superhero-Industrial Complex

C.T. Phipps Author Of The Rules of Supervillainy

From my list on superheroes not from Marvel or DC.

Why am I passionate about this?

Hi, my name is CT Phipps, and I am a crazy nerd from Ashland, Ky. I'm married with two dogs and love superheroes. I mean love. I used to wallpaper my bedroom wall with Spider-Man comics in their polybags. I've been a lifelong superhero fan and just love all the melodrama, hilarity, and weird science as well as magic that are the undercurrents of the genre. I've never lost my love of the characters and their stories, so when the MCU first came out, I ended up writing this book as well as its sequels. I’ve also written a bunch of other humorous sci-fi/fantasy books but this is the series closest to my heart.

C.T.'s book list on superheroes not from Marvel or DC

C.T. Phipps Why did C.T. love this book?

Sometimes you want your heroes to be serious and sometimes you want them to be wacky.

Andrea Vernon is a series that goes running toward wackiness then sails right past it. The story of a secretary at a private military contractor that specializes in goofy, ridiculous, and terrifying effective superheroes, this is one of the most fun novels I've enjoyed in years.

Andrea is a delightful Lois Lane figure who is stuck being the only normal person in the weirdest office in the world. It reminded me of the old Damage Control comics. 

By Alexander C. Kane,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Andrea Vernon and the Superhero-Industrial Complex as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Back by popular demand! The further, fearsome, and funny adventures of Andrea Vernon and the Corporation for UltraHuman Protection - written by Alexander C. Kane and performed by Bahni Turpin, 2018 Audie Award winner for Best Female Narrator.

More than a year after she helped save the world from the Sparnaxian invasion, Andrea Vernon is in a good place. Her boss is giving her greater responsibility and she's getting to travel a lot (although her fill-in is hopeless at making coffee); things could be getting even more serious with her 8' 4” superhero boyfriend, The Big Axe; and she has…


Book cover of One

Jamie Krakover Author Of Tracker220

From my list on young adult books with a twist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up with a fascination for space and things that fly. I always wanted to be an astronaut. That didn’t exactly pan out (I have bad eyesight and I hate to run), but I was able to turn that passion into a career as an aerospace engineer. I’ve also been drawn to Young Adult books because they're able to take a seemingly mundane concept and twist it on its head. I start my stories with the question of ‘what if’? What if we could access infinite knowledge in the blink of an eye, but everything we did was constantly monitored? That is the basis for my YA sci-fi Tracker220 and my love of the genre.


Jamie's book list on young adult books with a twist

Jamie Krakover Why did Jamie love this book?

In a world with superpowers, two abilities mean you’re a Super and none means you’re Normal.

The Twist? Merrin Grey has a single power, meaning she’s half a Super called a One. And when she’s forced to transfer to a normal high school she meets Elias who is also a One. When they combine their powers, they can fly! 

One is a love letter to superheroes and comics and plays with the idea of what makes someone a superhero vs a less than. I loved all the sci-fi tropes stood on their heads in this book. And Merrin and Elias are the cutest. This was one of the first indie-published novels I read. It showed me the art of possible, and how fantastic the world of indie publishing is.

By Leigh Ann Kopans,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked One as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When having two powers makes you a Super and having none makes you a Normal, having only one makes you a sad half-superpowered freak. It makes you a One. Sixteen-year-old Merrin Grey would love to be able to fly – too bad all she can do is hover. If she could just land an internship at the Biotech Hub, she might finally figure out how to fix herself. She busts her butt in AP Chem and salivates over the Hub’s research on the manifestation of superpowers, all in hopes of boosting her chances. Then she meets Elias VanDyne, another One,…


Book cover of Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures

S.M. Stevens Author Of Shannon's Odyssey

From my list on adventure with talking animals and a dash of magic.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a girl, I would roll around on the floor with my Labrador retriever, beg my parents for horseback-riding lessons, and dream of being a vet. A proficiency in language and lack of science skills led me to writing instead, but my intense love of animals never waned. I adore adventure stories featuring animal characters and human ones, and some form of communication between them. That’s why I wrote Shannon’s Odyssey which, like many Middle Grade novels, also explores family secrets and the all-important act of forgiveness. It’s not fantasy but contains mystical elements rooted in reality, because who doesn’t want to believe magic exists in our everyday lives?

S.M.'s book list on adventure with talking animals and a dash of magic

S.M. Stevens Why did S.M. love this book?

Clever, comic-book reading, word-loving Flora is more cynical than ever since her parents’ separation. She’s sure her mother loves a shepherdess lamp more than her own daughter. When Flora saves a squirrel sucked up by a neighbor’s vacuum and he returns with super strength and the ability to understand language and write poetry, she finds a kindred spirit. I love this book for its colorful (human and squirrel) characters and subtle exploration of family dynamics. And I love that Flora’s journey, which is emotional rather than physical, isn’t wrapped up with a tidy bow at the end.

By Kate DiCamillo, K.G. Campbell (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Flora & Ulysses as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Holy unanticipated occurrences! A cynic meets an unlikely superhero in a genre-breaking new novel by a master storyteller.

It begins, as the best superhero stories do, with a tragic accident that has unexpected consequences. The squirrel never saw it coming - the vacuum cleaner, that is. As for self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman, she has read every issue of the comic book Terrible Things Can Happen to You! so she is just the right person to step in and save him. What neither can predict is that Ulysses (the squirrel) has been born anew, with powers of strength, flight and…


Book cover of Tom Strong - Book 1

Liam Francis Walsh Author Of Red Scare: A Graphic Novel

From my list on graphic novels for adventurous kids.

Why am I passionate about this?

In my opinion, a good adventure story does two things at once: it compels you to turn pages, while, paradoxically, also enticing you to get off the couch and go out into the beautiful, magical world, pregnant with unlimited possibilities, right outside your door, just waiting for you to notice it. I’ve hitchhiked, I’ve been lost in the jungle, I’ve sailed, I’ve run whitewater rivers, and I’ve written and drawn New Yorker cartoons and picture books. I hope these books are as hard for you to put down as they were for me, and when you do put ‘em down, it’s only to throw on your rucksack and head out in search of adventure!

Liam's book list on graphic novels for adventurous kids

Liam Francis Walsh Why did Liam love this book?

Tom Strong is a throwback to classic pulp heroes, and the closest thing to a superhero you’ll find on my list. Tom is super strong, super smart, and super white, but that’s where comparisons to the heroes from which the author drew inspiration end! Tom’s Black wife and daughter are fully realized characters with thoughts and feelings of their own. Tom doesn’t punch out the bad guys, he doesn’t even believe in bad guys! Instead, he uses his intelligence to recognize that conflict arises not from malice, but from misunderstanding and incompatible needs and desires. With this in mind, Tom can use his super-intelligence to craft a compromise that reestablishes order. Far from preachy, eat-your-vegetables sermonizing, these stories are witty, layered, thought-provoking, and hilarious.

By Alan Moore,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Tom Strong - Book 1 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In a first volume featuring a popular physical and mental super-human, Tom battles with the Nazi super-woman Ingrid Weiss and her pre-human monster called the Pangean. A Graphic Novel. Original.


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