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

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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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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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Between its autumn and field-trip themes and the fact that not many books start countdowns from 20, this may find its way to...

PUMPKIN COUNTDOWN

A class visits the pumpkin patch, giving readers a chance to count down from 20.

At the farm, Farmer Mixenmatch gives them the tour, which includes a petting zoo, an educational area, a corn maze and a tractor ride to the pumpkin patch. Holub’s text cleverly though not always successfully rhymes each child’s name within the line: “ ‘Eighteen kids get on our bus,’ says Russ. / ‘But someone’s late,’ says Kate. / ‘Wait for me!’ calls Kiri.” Pumpkins at the tops of pages contain the numerals that match the text, allowing readers to pair them with the orange-colored, spelled-out numbers. Some of the objects proffered to count are a bit of a stretch—“Guess sixteen things we’ll see,” count 14 cars that arrived at the farm before the bus—but Smith’s artwork keeps things easy to count, except for a challenging page that asks readers to search for 17 orange items (answers are at the bottom, upside down). Strangely, Holub includes one page with nothing to count—a sign marks “15 Pumpkin Street.” Charming, multicultural round-faced characters and lots of detail encourage readers to go back through the book scouring pages for the 16 things the kids guessed they might see. Endpapers featuring a smattering of pumpkin facts round out the text.

Between its autumn and field-trip themes and the fact that not many books start countdowns from 20, this may find its way to many library shelves. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: July 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-8075-6660-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Whitman

Review Posted Online: May 16, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2012

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