Important YA Books to Read for Jewish Heritage Month

May was designated Jewish Heritage Month in 2006 by presidential proclamation. Here are eight important YA books that commemorate Jewish history, heritage, and culture to add to your TBR pile. To learn more, visit the National Museum of American Jewish History.

Alma Presses Play

Alma Presses Play

A lyrical novel-in-verse that takes us through the journey of coming of age in New York during the 80s.

Anna and the Swallow Man

Anna and the Swallow Man

Set in Poland during the Second World War, Anna and the Swallow Man is a stunning, literary, and wholly original New York Times bestseller and Publishers Weekly best book of the year perfect for readers of The Book Thief and All the Light We Cannot See.

The Assignment

The Assignment

Inspired by a real-life incident, this riveting novel explores the dangerous impact discrimination and antisemitism have on one community when a school assignment goes terribly wrong.

The Book Thief (Anniversary Edition)

The Book Thief (Anniversary Edition)

This anniversary edition of the extraordinary #1 New York Times bestseller features pages of bonus content, including marked-up manuscript pages, original sketches, and pages from the author’s writing notebook.

A Cloud of Outrageous Blue

A Cloud of Outrageous Blue

For fans of Fever 1793 comes the story of a young woman paving her own path and falling in love during the Great Plague of 1348, from the award-winning creator of What the Night Sings.

Color Me In

Color Me In

A powerful coming-of-age novel, pulled from personal experience, about the meaning of friendship, the joyful beginnings of romance, and the racism and religious intolerance that can both strain a family to the breaking point and strengthen its bonds.

It's a Whole Spiel

It's a Whole Spiel

By Array

Get ready to fall in love, experience heartbreak, and discover the true meaning of identity in this poignant collection of short stories about Jewish teens, including entries by David Levithan, Nova Ren Suma, and more!

A Light in the Darkness

A Light in the Darkness

From National Book Award Finalist Albert Marrin comes the moving story of Janusz Korczak, the heroic Polish Jewish doctor who devoted his life to children, perishing with them in the Holocaust.

This Rebel Heart

This Rebel Heart

A tumultuous tale of the student-led 1956 Hungarian revolution—and an all too timely look at the impact of Communism and the USSR in Eastern Europe—set in a fabulist, colorless post-WWII Budapest from Sydney Taylor Honor winner Katherine Locke.

The Way Back

The Way Back

A sweeping historical fantasy that follows two teens on a perilous journey through the Far Country, a Jewish land of spirits and demons. Perfect for readers of Neil Gaiman and Philip Pullman.

What the Night Sings

What the Night Sings

For fans of The Book Thief and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas comes a lushly illustrated novel about a teen Holocaust survivor who must come to terms with who she is and how to rebuild her life.

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