Kirkus Reviews QR Code
DRESS LIKE A GIRL by Patricia Toht


by Patricia Toht ; illustrated by Lorian Tu-Dean

Pub Date: Jan. 22nd, 2019
ISBN: 978-0-06-279892-3
Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Fashion-conscious young girls get practical tips on finding suitable outfits for every occasion—and profession.

An ethnically diverse group of girls arrives at the home of their friend, whose Asian father and black mother look on. In the rhyming text readers learn that the rules about what it means to dress like a girl are to be heeded “in your own way.” The girls proceed to play dress-up and make-believe with costumes of astronauts, doctors, conductors, fire fighters, police officers, scuba divers, arctic explorers, athletes, and construction workers. The ink-and-watercolor illustrations render lively children against spare backgrounds of rooms throughout the house that adapt to the girls’ imaginations. Readers are told to “Make your own rules / in this big wide world. // Set your sights high / and… // …DRESS LIKE A GIRL!” After many play scenes, they demonstrate their costumes and personalities for the hostess’s family, holding signs that say “Whoooo runs the world? GIRLS” and “My own hero” and “Get it, GIRL!” Then they fall asleep in their superhero-, dinosaur-, and outer-space–themed sleeping bags, with costume equipment scattered around on the floor. More a promotion of girl power than a challenge to gender—it does still validate the concept of “dressing like a girl”—this book encourages girls to broaden their horizons beyond princesses and fairies.

A cute reflection of girl-centric playtime, role play, and friendship.

(Picture book. 3-7)