Guest Reviewers

I am happy to include guest reviews of socially engaged, inclusive, multicultural children’s picture books, middle grade chapter books, and young adult books. I know there are amazing books out there that I simply don’t have time to thoughtfully review!

If you are interested email me at raisethemrighteous@gmail.com.

This is a great opportunity for folks who don’t have time to create a blog but are still interested in spreading the word about #diversity in #kidslit!

Check out Multicultural Children’s Book Day for the chance to get a book sent to you for the cost of a review!

#TBT – Jane Severance’s Lots of Mommies

Image result for lots of mommiesBefore Heather there was Emily, and instead of two mommies she had Lots of Mommies. Published by Lollipop Power, Inc. in 1983, Lots of Mommies is boldly written by Jane Severance, author of When Megan Went Away (1979). Severance’s work is a critical part of LGBTQ history that provides a look into lesbian family formations decades before Modern Family delivered sanitized images of same-sex parents to a mainstream audience. Continue reading

Zetta Elliott’s Benny Doesn’t Like to Be Hugged

Benny Doesn't Like to Be HuggedBenny Doesn’t Like to Be Hugged (2017), written by the brilliant and prolific Zetta Elliott and richly illustrated by Purple Wong, is a sweet and accessible story about the relationship between a boy with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and his sister. At the end of the book, Elliott provides a detailed note about her investment in creating inclusive children’s books. She discusses wanting to write a book about autism with a Black male protagonist because society takes such a punitive stance on Black boys. The beautiful brown-skinned children Wong illustrates, as well as the diverse cast of characters both children interact with throughout the story, are wonderfully inclusive of different abilities, religions, and races. Benny Doesn’t Like to Be Hugged is a much needed text that celebrates difference and subtly shatters stereotypes while introducing a young autistic boy to readers through the eyes of his loyal and loving sister. Continue reading

I’m doing the Cybils!

https://i2.wp.com/www.cybils.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Cybils-Logo-2018-Round1Judge.pngThe Cybils Awards aims to recognize the children’s and young adult authors and illustrators whose books combine the highest literary merit and popular appeal. If some la-di-dah awards can be compared to brussels sprouts, and other, more populist ones to gummy bears, we’re thinking more like organic chicken nuggets. We’re yummy and nutritious.

I am a Round 1 Judge for the Easy Reader and Early Chapter Book sections! This means that along with several other judges I’ll read and evaluate about 100 books from October to December in order to compile a shortlist that Round 2 Judges will pick winners from. I am so excited to have the opportunity to explore so many stories and to help identify excellent books for young readers!

 

Mosca’s The Doctor with an Eye for Eyes

The Story of Dr. PB Cover_1600px_300DPI_5MB (1).jpgIf I only had two adjectives to describe The Doctor with an Eye for Eyes, written by Julia Finley Mosca and illustrated by Daniel Rieley, I would, without hesitation, choose witty and bold. The book’s cover features disembodied eyeballs floating on a purplish background as well as a woman with brown skin and long dark hair holding an ophthalmoscope. It’s a wonderful introduction to a picture book that is a little silly, a little serious, and brilliantly engaging. The book is one of a small handful in Innovation Press’s Amazing Scientists Series, which provides socially relevant biographies of scientists who have overcome structural inequality to become experts in their fields. All the books in the series are written by Mosca and illustrated by Rieley providing a sense of aesthetic and lyrical coherence to the collection. Continue reading