A bright and joyful celebration of the kaleidoscope of colors in readers’ families and communities.

A GIRL OF COLOR

A girl connects the colors of her life to the people around her in this picture book.

Young Morgan proudly states that she’s a girl of color. She points out that while she is a Black girl, that color doesn’t match her skin. Instead, her tone is golden brown, “like the sun-kissed leaves of autumn.” Her best friend is White, but her skin doesn’t look like snow—she’s peachy. On the following pages, Morgan describes how her family compares her with other colors, depending on her mood and the happiness she brings to others. She touches on the hues, patterns, and skin tones that surround her. Young’s accessible, first-person narrative, along with the clues in each of Hayden’s digital illustrations, makes this a strong selection for emergent readers. Like Young and Hayden’s previous book, I Too Allergic (2018), this title features a child advocating for herself. But in this case, the girl is pointing out the beauty of colors everywhere and encouraging readers to join her in loving that splendor. Hayden deftly depicts Morgan in a number of outfits and hairstyles, showing the huge array of expressions girls can embrace. The illustrator also offers a range of skin tones both in Morgan’s family and in her community to emphasize the uplifting message. One particularly funny image shows Morgan experimenting with bright red lipstick, to her mother’s humorous dismay.

A bright and joyful celebration of the kaleidoscope of colors in readers’ families and communities.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2021

ISBN: 979-8-58-776223-7

Page Count: 28

Publisher: Self

Review Posted Online: Aug. 1, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2021

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A feisty manifesto and appealing visual experience for those who find books thrust upon them.

I DON'T WANT TO READ THIS BOOK

After declaring refusal to do so, an unseen narrator reads this book.

The book’s title appears as a Post-it note attached to the cover. With lighthearted, whimsical word-art drawings, hand-lettering, a clipped pace, and a palette dominated by a warm peach tone, the story features a wry and opinionated offstage narrator who provides metatextual commentary about the scorned book at hand. “Let me guess...Words,” says the snarky narrator about what to expect when opening the book. Some words, such as the word doubtwith its useless letter B, are “plain ridiculous.” And then there are unnecessarily large words, such as infinitesimal, which (confoundingly) means “small.” By now, the narrator has reached peak crankiness. The next objects of the narrator’s ire are sentences, described as “too many words all smushed together,” followed by paragraphs (“Just looking at a paragraph exhausts me”) and chapters. (Cue Chapter 2!) The hyperbolic vexation is genuinely funny as medium and message converge. Words, sentences, paragraphs, an entire chapter, and the ending are presented in this anti-reading diatribe, the enddepicted in triumphant, celebratory fireworks. Greenfield’s gentle satire and Lowery’s genuinely entertaining cartoon translation of prose to art might charm even avid readers (who may remember once agreeing with some of the narrator’s sentiments). (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A feisty manifesto and appealing visual experience for those who find books thrust upon them. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 9, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-593-32606-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2021

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An invitation to wonder, imagine and look at everything (humans included) in a new way.

NOAH CHASES THE WIND

A young boy sees things a little differently than others.

Noah can see patterns in the dust when it sparkles in the sunlight. And if he puts his nose to the ground, he can smell the “green tang of the ants in the grass.” His most favorite thing of all, however, is to read. Noah has endless curiosity about how and why things work. Books open the door to those answers. But there is one question the books do not explain. When the wind comes whistling by, where does it go? Noah decides to find out. In a chase that has a slight element of danger—wind, after all, is unpredictable—Noah runs down streets, across bridges, near a highway, until the wind lifts him off his feet. Cowman’s gusty wisps show each stream of air turning a different jewel tone, swirling all around. The ribbons gently bring Noah home, setting him down under the same thinking tree where he began. Did it really happen? Worthington’s sensitive exploration leaves readers with their own set of questions and perhaps gratitude for all types of perspective. An author’s note mentions children on the autism spectrum but widens to include all who feel a little different.

An invitation to wonder, imagine and look at everything (humans included) in a new way. (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 14, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-60554-356-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Redleaf Lane

Review Posted Online: Feb. 3, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2015

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