ABC I love me by Miriam Muhammad is a wonderfully told and artistically illustrated story of empowerment and self-love for young children. The story depicts two main characters who happen to be dripping in chocolate, "melanated" skin tones. The story is dedicated to the author’s son and every black and brown girl and boy. Starting with “A is for afro”, then “B is for beautiful” is a great place to start considering the strong connection persons of color have to their hair and the “Black is beautiful” movement. Besides encouraging children to have positive character traits such as “confident”, “fearlessness”, and “talented”, they author also encourages the youth to express emotions such as “joy,” recognize one’s “royalty,” and embrace wholesome values such as gratitude, creating healthy habits for eating and exercise, and being open to trying new things.
Brave Jake is a short story written by Michelle Spray. Brave Jake is a picture book that should be read to children before visiting the doctor. Brave Jake is easy to read and a great length for busy pediatric doctor’s offices, waiting areas, and for those patients who may need a little encouragement. Using bright and captivating illustrations, the author shows children there is no need to be afraid of needles. This book works for children who will be getting vaccinated or children with juvenile diabetes.
However, it can also be used to explain to children that some children go to the doctor more often for treatment. What caught my attention was the diversity of the children in the different scenes. There is also a sister version of the book called Brave Kayla.
Grab your copy on Amazon for a new parent or a parent of a special needs child.
Sunshine’s Friendship Story
Written by: India Haye (2018)
Illustrated by: Araya-Sunshine Ortiz
Published by: Beau Noir Publishing, Philadelphia, PA
Kudos to the mother and daughter team for the creation of Sunshine’s friendship story. Here at Lauren Simone Publishing House, we are always proud to share work of young authors and illustrators.
Illustrated in pencil and pencil crayon, a story of little girl named Sunshine who sat in her room, while other children played outdoors enjoying the warm weather. Sunshine was very blessed to have lots of toys and games, but a friend she didn’t have. Using a rhythmic tone, readers learn of Sunshine’s search for a new friend. It is a message of faith, hope, imagination, patience, and persistence.
India Haye is an author, blogger and mother of three girls from Boston, MA. Araya-Sunshine Ortiz is India’s oldest daughter, who loves to draw and dreams of being an actor and director when she is older. We enjoyed the story and wish the author and illustrator much success. We give this book 4 stars and recommend this book for children who are in grade 2 to 4 due to its word length.
Have you ever wondered who you are and who you were meant to be? Have you already discovered your purpose or are you still searching? Do you compare your traits and talents to others? Have you ever wished to me someone else?
How does one teach children to have confidence in themselves, before they even know who they are? Well by telling them to look into the mirror and showing them that they are created to be just who they are, you can encourage them to accept themselves for who they are. And if that doesn’t work… Children’s literature plays a great role in providing these truths and guiding children’s moral compasses.
Book Review: But I am a cat!
Written by Jamee-Marie Edwards (2013)
Illustrated by Lowell Hildebrandt
Published by Author House, Bloomington, IN
But I am a cat is a fun story involving Mr. Cat, Mrs. Bee, Mrs. Duck, Mrs. Turtle, Mr. Bird and other fun characters. Each character has amazing traits and is happy to be themselves. Join Mr. Cat as he discovers why his life and traits are amazing and perfect for him.
"Mr. Cat's sleepy eyes slowly opened. It's morning again, he thought with a squint. Time for a morning stroll... As Mr. Cat takes his morning stroll he encounters Mrs. Bee, Mr. Squirrel and lots of other fun loving animals. However, to his surprise what seems to be his routine stroll turns into an adventure of self-acceptance." For story quality (content, creativity, engaging interest), we give this book 5 stars. For illustration (color, brightness, esthetic appeal), we give it 3 stars. We strongly recommend this book for 2 to 6 year old children. Find on Amazon!
More about the author
Jamee-Marie Edwards is a Queens, N.Y. native and lifelong artist. Her zeal for writing was fueled at an early age by her grandfather, James Edward Lawrie Sr., who would take her out to the airport and tell stories as they watched the planes take off and land. Jamee-Marie is passionate about leaving a legacy that will inspire others and one of her life's mottos is "Become Inspired and Be An Inspiration."
Jamee-Marie's entrepreneurial spirit has led to the creation of her company Arrie-Mae Inspirations, named in memory of her grandmother (Arrie-Mae Lawrie). Her program entitled "The Me I Need To Be!" Empowerment Program, is designed to help others discover, embrace, and celebrate their unique gifts, talents and abilities through the arts and sciences.
Jamee-Marie currently works in school health and is a NYC D.O.E and Queens Public Library vendor. She can be followed on various social media platforms (LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter). Please visit www.maeinspireu.com for more information.