I was so sad to hear of the passing of actor Chadwick Boseman, best known for his role as King T’Challah in the Marvel Black Panther films. Boseman died at the age of 43 after a battle with colon cancer.
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Boseman’s portrayal of the superhero Black Panther was an inspiration to many, because he embraced and celebrated the character’s Blackness. Chadwick Boseman and his castmates gave the world superheroes that are unapologetically Black, and many Black people saw themselves represented as heroes for the first time in their performance.
During his commencement speech at our beloved Howard, my friend Chadwick Boseman said, “press on with pride and press on with purpose.”— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) August 29, 2020
In his name, let’s keep fighting. pic.twitter.com/HU8Q6yQaJ4
There are also many excellent books and graphic novels that highlight the heroism of Black Panther. These are some of our favorite Black Panther books, for kids of all ages — and adults, too!
15 Children’s Books About Black Panther
Board and Picture Books
Black Panther: My Mighty Marvel First Book by John Buscema (Coming January, 2021)
Even the littlest readers can enjoy the awesomeness of Black Panther! This board book introduces toddlers and preschoolers to Black Panther, using classic art from the Black Panther comics.
Warriors of Wakanda by Frank Berrios
Perfect for preschoolers, this book features Black Panther, Shuri, Okoye, and other Wakandan Warriors who use their power and intellect for good. Your children may also like another book from this Little Golden Book series, Black Panther.
Black Panther: On the Prowl! by R. R. Busse
King T’Challa takes on his hero persona of Black Panther and teams up with the Dora Milaje special forces and CIA Agent Everett K. Ross to defend Wakanda from attack. This fun picture book is great for sharing with kids ages 4 and up.
Early Reader Books
This is Black Panther by Alexandra C. West
This Level 1 early reader book tells the origin story of Black Panther, and how King T’Challa was transformed into this powerful superhero. It’s a great book for new and reluctant readers, and I recommend sharing it with kids ages 5 to 8.
Meet Black Panther by R. R. Busse
This Level 2 early reader book condenses the plot into a simple story that new readers will love reading independently. It’s perfect for kids who are just mastering the art of reading on their own, and I recommend it for kids ages 5 to 8.
Middle Grade Chapter Books and Graphic Novels
Black Panther: The Young Prince by Ronald L. Smith
Before he was King, T’Challa was a twelve-year-old prince in Wakanda. He spends his time playing with his best friend, M’Baku, and learning the ins and outs of ruling Wakanda from his father.
But when a threat comes to the land, T’Challa and M’Baku find out they are being sent to American for their schooling and their safety. Life in Chicago is very different than Wakanda, and T’Challa must learn how to survive and thrive in his new home.
This chapter book is perfect for kids ages 8 and up.
Black Panther Rules!: Discover What it Takes to be a Super Hero by Billy Wrecks
This super-fun “how-to” guide introduces young readers to Black Panther and teaches them all about the qualities they need to be a Superhero. The book highlights qualities like bravery, integrity, and kindness, and is very visual with lots of engaging illustrations.
I recommend sharing this book with children ages 7 and up.
Black Panther Adventures by Jeff Parker
This middle grade graphic novel follows the adventures of T’Challa as he comes to blow with the Fantastic Four. When the Four get their hands on a shipment of Vibranium, Black Panther must confront them to get it back. This book also includes a partnership with Black Panther and the Avengers crew!
I recommend this graphic novel for kids ages 8 and up
Shuri: A Black Panther Novel by Nic Stone
The amazing Nic Stone has written an excellent novel about Shuri, King T’Challa’s sister who is a warrior and science genius. In this story, Shuri goes on a journey to save the Heart-Shaped Herb, a plant that is vital to the survival of Wakanda.
This book is perfect for readers ages 9 and up. A sequel comes out in 2021!
The Battle for Wakanda by Brandon T. Snider
King T’Challa is in a crisis. The Avengers think he stole a powerful, classified weapon, and on top of that, Wakanda is under attack and the citizens are not happy with their king. Can the Black Panther unite his people and clear his name?
This chapter book is a fun read for children ages 8 and up.
Stormy Weather by Kyle J. Baker
This graphic novel follows the adventures of T’Challa and his sister Shuri as they work to rule Wakanda. As deadly weather and natural disasters plague the nation, the two must figure out how to save their people with their intelligence and inventions.
This action-packed graphic novel is excellent for readers ages 9 and up.
Young Adult Graphic Novels
Shuri: The Search for Black Panther by Nnedi Okorafor
When T’Challa is lost on a mission in space, everyone looks to his sister Shuri to rule the nation. But Shuri is much happier out of the spotlight, working in a lab and creating new technology. She must choose between the safety of her nation and the power of her dreams, and every choice seems to have dangerous consequences.
I recommend this graphic novel for kids ages 11 and up.
Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet series by Ta-Nehisi Coates
In the first book of this amazing series, T’Challa is battling a terrorist group that is challenging the safety of Wakanda. As the Black Panther attempts to protect his people and keep their spirits up, a familiar enemy returns to take advantage of T’Challa’s vulnerable state.
I highly recommend this graphic novel series for kids ages 13 and up.
Black Panther: World of Wakanda series by Roxane Gay, Ta-Nehisi Coates, and Yona Harvey
Black Panther and Roxane Gay are an amazing combination! This series builds out the characters in the world of Wakanda, and in this first book, readers will learn more about Ayo and Aneka, two members of the Dora Milaje who are assigned to protect the queen. As a romance between the two buds, can they keep their focus on their country?
I recommend this book for kids ages 11 and up.
Black Panther and the Crew by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Yona Harvey
In this book, Black Panther unites with other Black superheroes in the Marvel Universe to fight for justice. When a Harlem activist is murdered, this crew is on the case. What they uncover about the history of the Marvel Universe shocks even the most jaded of these heroes.
I recommend this graphic novel for kids ages 13 and up.
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