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RIGHT NOW! by Miranda Paul


Real Kids Speaking Up for Change

by Miranda Paul ; illustrated by Bea Jackson

Pub Date: Sept. 7th, 2021
ISBN: 978-0-358-13732-0
Publisher: Clarion Books

Who says you need to be a grown-up to help make a change in the world? There are kids around the world making a difference, right now!

Paul profiles children notable for their bravery, leadership, intelligence, commitment to creatively solving problems, and willingness to speak to matters facing the world—especially on behalf of other children. Readers will be inspired by the blend of familiar kid activists such as Jazz Jennings, Greta Thunberg, and Malala Yousafzai with lesser-known young people like scientist Angela Zhang and community worker Jonas Corona. Also included is a two-page spread featuring 18 young people who are committed to helping animals. The profiles are short and conveyed in free-verse odes paired with prose paragraphs of facts, together briefly outlining the young person’s challenge and resolution on a full-bleed, double-page spread. Jackson’s dreamy, doe-eyed illustrations embody the optimism and hope of each profiled youngster but also often fail to convey their ferocity. Greta Thunberg sits next to a sunflower looking into the middle distance rather than facing down the U.N. General Assembly, for instance. The backmatter includes a section headed “You Can Speak Up Too! Actions Make a Difference” that answers questions about ways young people can lend their voices and efforts to help others. There’s also an author’s note, glossary, and bibliography with quote sources. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Inspirational if a little airbrushed.

(Informational picture book. 5-8)