Dear reader A love letter to libraries

Tiffany Rose

Book - 2022

A voracious young reader pens a love letter to libraries and books, and powerfully expresses the need for diversity and the importance of representation in stories.

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room jE/Rose Checked In
Children's Room jE/Rose Due Oct 15, 2023
Picture books
New York : Little Bee Books [2022]
First edition
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 24 cm
Ages 4-8.
Grades 2-3.
Main Author
Tiffany Rose (author)
Review by Booklist Review

Book-crazy kids will gravitate toward this story of a little Black girl who loves going to the library. She avidly reads across genres but astutely observes that the heroes and heroines suffer from "an absence of melanin." Where is the Black Girl Magic? In the end, she decides to write her own stories that reflect her image and experiences. The illustrations in this book are bright and reflect the girl's vivid imagination. While the text's rhymes don't always flow, the sentiment that "Our stories are diverse as our skin / and deserve to be told" is worthwhile, indeed. An upbeat addition to #RepresentationMatters collections in the classroom or library. Pair this with Sandra L. Pinkney's Read and Rise (2006) and Janet Sumner Johnson's Help Wanted, Must Love Books (2020).

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission. Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

As much a billet doux to budding authors as to readers and libraries, Rose's energetic epistolary picture book issues a call for representation: "What of the brown people like me who could do magic, fight villains, and find lost cities of gold?" The book opens with its forthright narrator, who has brown skin and wears a cat-ears headband, surrounded by books. "I devour so many books, I prefer them to meals," the text reads, as art portrays a pancake-like stack. But none of the child's favorites feature characters who look like her, and a return trip to the library in search of "characters of the same hue" only yields "books of struggle, hardship, and pain." And so, in search of "cocoa-colored mer-people,/ honey-hued dragon slayers,/ and superheroes with locs," the take-charge reader decides to become a writer, encouraging others to follow her heroic lead. Stars are sprinkled across Rose's busy unlined art, amplifying the text's powerful suggestion that stories can change the world. Ages 4--8. (Feb.)

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved Review by Kirkus Book Review

A book-loving, brown-skinned, proactive young girl advocates for stories with characters that look like her. Her appetite for books is so insatiable that she likes stories of all kinds, including those "full of thrones, quests, friendship, and dreams" and those "with brave heroines and heroes saving the day." Although she views herself as a heroine, she has a "nagging suspicion" that she doesn't meet the "criteria for a heroine's condition" because not a single character in the books she loves looks like her. Searching for characters with brown skin who "do magic, fight villains, and find lost cities of gold," she finds only stories of "struggle, hardship, and pain" and asks what it means "for a girl like me…to never see a face like mine." Undaunted, she opts to create her own stories of "cocoa-colored mer-people, honey-hued dragon slayers, and superheroes with locs." She invites readers to join her in making her "melanated words come to life" and in telling stories as "diverse as our skin." The energetic, upbeat text employing the occasional rhyme transmits an urgency designed to prompt readers to action. Colorful and imaginative illustrations show the spunky protagonist engulfed by towers of books and transported to storybook worlds peopled by brown-skinned characters. A rousing call to action for more racially diverse children's literature. (Picture book. 6-8) Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.