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by Nadia Mike ; illustrated by Charlene Chua

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2016
ISBN: 978-1-7722-7081-5
Publisher: Inhabit Media

A little girl’s pirate costume inspires a love of mustaches, which her mother happily indulges.

Leah dresses up like a pirate for Halloween but thinks her costume is missing a certain something until her mother draws a mustache on her face. She experiences a bit of a letdown the next day but then decides “that it did not need to be Halloween to have fun and dress up,” and her mother obliges when asked to draw another mustache on her face. No one objects to her gender-bending dress-up play, though some kids briefly take pause when she invites them to the titular “mustache party” for her birthday. When asked why she chose this theme (instead of a princess or a fairy party), Leah simply responds, “Because I think mustaches are cool!” Self-assured and exuberant, Leah enjoys a very happy birthday with friends and family. Although the text specifies neither cultural context nor setting, the author is Inuit, and her photo alongside her red-haired daughter Leah’s suggest that illustrator Chua based her illustrations of the fictional Leah and her mom on them. Illustrated clues in the setting, including snowy scenes on Halloween, mukluks stored near gloves and a jacket in a friend’s house, and small buildings close together and linked by power lines, evoke the author’s First Nations home of Iqaluit, Nunavut.

Quirky, playful, affirming fun! (Picture book. 3-7)