Two Empowering and Diverse Picture Books!

Though we’ve still got a lot of summer left in our house (hooray for not starting school till after Labor Day!), I know many of you are gearing up for back to school already… Be sure to check out these two gems, Who Do I See in the Mirror? and I Am Enough, to share with your children and remind them about what makes them special and unique before the new school year starts!

In Who Do I See in the Mirror?, Vese Aghoghovbia Aladewolu and Irene Omiunu use a wonderful combination of words and illustrations to remind readers what exactly makes them important, special, and unique… And it’s not our hair, our noses, our eyes, our legs, though those all do wonderful things for us and for those around us, and they can indeed make us unique and special! Rather, a “good heart and curious mind” make us who we truly are and are the most important parts of our individual selves. Yes, our outsides may be amazing and beautiful, but it’s what inside that gives us true beauty. Amen! If I can hope for one thing for my children, it’s that they have a good heart and truly understand why this is important. Thank you, Philly & Friends, for gifting us this delight of a book.

One more quick note about Who Do I See in the Mirror?— the publishers have included an “Awesome Award” that can be removed from the back of the book and personalized for the owner of the book. My only wish is that I had 2 of these certificates so that I could give one to each of my girls! Also note that for every book Philly & Friends sell, they donate a book to Books 2 Africa, an organization that ships books to underprivileged children in Africa!

But remember that I’m sharing about 2 books today! A few weeks ago, we checked out Grace Byers’s I Am Enough from our local library, and I knew I wanted to spread the word about this one, too! Byers and illustrator Keturah Bobo have also given us a delightful, diverse book that celebrates our differences and our unique traits, but also emphasizes the love we have for others. Written in rhyming verse that makes this appealing to readers both young and old, the characters depicted here are slightly older, which may extend the target audience range a bit longer. What makes this book stand out to me is the true diversity of characters! There is no real main character, but instead a cast of girls with a wide range of skin colors, interests, abilities, and more. Byers acknowledges that these differences may mean that sometimes we disagree with others… but “in the end, we are right here / to live a life of love, not fear… /  to help each other when it’s tough / to say together: I am enough.”

These two books are diverse gems with universal appeal and important messages— helping our young children (both books happen to feature girls, but the messages are applicable to boys, too!) learn to love themselves and those around them!

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