Dear Black Child

Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins/. Sept. 2022. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780063091979.
K-Gr 2–Black children (and the occasional adult) with various skin tones, hairstyles, abilities, and body types populate this upbeat and inspiring missive. The language is poetic and metaphorical (“Let your name be your flag. Say it loud and say it proud. Wave it until it’s woven in their mind”), and the illustrations uplifting. There are classroom and library scenes as well as outdoor settings, and a final spread shows the cast of characters in royal blue graduation caps and gowns, diplomas in hand. Below the final line, “This is just the beginning,” four children seem to be dancing and high-fiving in the grass, their shadows stretching long before them in the sunset.
VERDICT A triumphant mirror book for Black children everywhere, providing encouragement, validation, and joy.

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