Publishers Weekly Reviews
Rose's A–Z affirmation of black children sings with inclusivity and zest. Alongside letters presented in different bold design—the A for "afro" is studded with picks, combs, and brushes—language works to inspire confidence and pride: "Be you. Love you. Always. All ways," "Acknowledge your majesty and act accordingly." References to black leaders—Obama ("Our first black president") and Malcolm X ("Activist. Leader. Revolutionary")— occur alongside calls for children to define and be themselves, and to "SPEAK OUT for what is right./SPEAK UP when others are silent." Loose, joyful illustrations feature groups of children with a variety of skin tones and hair colors as figures full of verve dance, play, and create, mirroring the note at the end: "No matter your hue or shade. This is for you." A necessary, uplifting volume that celebrates "black girl magic" and "black boy joy." Ages 3–6. (Oct.)
Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly.
School Library Journal Reviews
PreS-K—This is a joyful tribute to, for, and of black children everywhere. It begins with "A is for Afro. Your hair makes a statement. Embrace the bigness of your hair. Pick it. Fluff it. Love it," and ends with "Z is for zillion. There will be a zillion people telling you to do something else or be someone else. Always be your free, talented, quirky, imaginative, melanated self. The world will adjust." The sentences are abundantly sprinkled with rich vocabulary (i.e., vibrant, unleash, remembrance, unapologetically). Each letter is large and filled with a bright, colorful design that mirrors the message. Many statements and individual words are in bold, upper-case letters to add emphasis, such as "NEVER DIMINISH YOUR SHINE" on the page for S. With this debut picture book, the author seeks to represent black children in ways she never experienced in the books she read as a child. The positive, upbeat vibe will no doubt appeal to most children but is especially aimed to inspire black children. VERDICT A must-have for any library that is in need of books with positive representation for and about black children, as there is no other alphabet book quite like this one.—Maggie Chase, Boise State University, ID
Copyright 2019 School Library Journal.
An empowering alphabet book celebration of diversity combines striking multicolored artwork, skill-reinforcing word examples and affirming, culturally positive messages, from “A is for Afro” and “F is for Fresh” to “V is for Voice” and “Z is for Zillion.” 25,000 first printing. Illustrations. - (Baker & Taylor)
"Contagiously upbeat, joyful, and positive . . . [C]herish this book." -Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW
"A must-have for any library that is in need of books with positive representation for and about black children, as there is no other alphabet book quite like this one." -School Library Journal, STARRED REVIEW
"A necessary, uplifting volume that celebrates 'black girl magic' and 'black boy joy.'" -Publishers Weekly
M Is for Melanin is an empowering alphabet book that teaches kids their ABCs and celebrates Black children!
M is for Melanin
shining in every inch of your skin.
Every shade, every hue.
All beautiful and unique.
Each letter of the alphabet contains affirming, Black-positive messages, from A is for Afro, to F is for Fresh, to W is for Worthy. This book teaches children their ABCs while encouraging them to love the skin that they're in.
Be bold. Be fearless. BE YOU. - (Simon and Schuster)