A Head Full of Birds

Eerdmans. Oct. 2022. 32p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780802855961.
Gr 2-4–A sweet picture book about looking beyond differences to make new friends. Nanette is a neurodiverse girl with “birds fluttering in her head,” and the other children are cruel to her. Nanette, despite this, continues to view the world in her own special way. When Noah is assigned to sit next to her in class, he discovers that there is beauty in Nanette’s understanding of the world. A simple text with short sentences keeps the book accessible to picture book readers. Colored pencil illustrations show Nanette as bright and lively, while around her the scenery is gray; Noah, too, is gray until he opens up to Nanette, and as he becomes her friend his colors grow more vibrant. All the children are depicted as white.
VERDICT A solid purchase for its treatment and amplification of neurodiverse characters.

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