Monday, January 21, 2019

Multicultural Children's Book Day

I was recently given an opportunity to review a book for Multicultural Children’s Book Day. More information on this special day is found below, including sponsor information and the mission of MCBD.

First, though, is the book I was gifted by the author, Lin Thomas. Her book, Every Sparrow was Made to Fly is the story of Sammy, a young Indian girl content with her life in her home city of Goa. She and her brother spend vacations at her uncle’s home on the beach, and it is her favorite spot in the world. Her world is happy; she loves her family, her home, her BFF, and her school. Her world turns upside down when she learns that her uncle will be selling his beach house and she and her family are moving to America.

Sammy is afraid of all the changes she is facing and convinces herself that she will not be successful at anything; her new school, finding friends, dancing, doing math correctly, or riding a bicycle. Her uncle gifted her a painting of his beach house, and there is a mystery surrounding it. As Sammy struggles to resolve her fears, the mystery of the painting begins to unravel step-by-step. As it does, Sammy learns to slowly trust herself, to face her fears and fly with her own wings, not those of self-doubt.

From the very first page, Sammy’s story was sweetly captivating. Her sweet, shy, innocent awkwardness is endearing, and her love of mystery stories reminded me of my own fascination with such stories at the same age as she. When I was young I loved Trixie Belden mysteries, and this story reminds me, just a little, of the first book in that series – a young girl loves to solve intriguing puzzles, and wants a best friend more than anything in the world. In the story Every Sparrow Was Made to Fly there is the added level of Sammy’s belief that she is the wrong shape and size, that she will never fit in with her new American classmates, or that her accent might be too much for her new American life. She fears that she is too old to learn how to ride a bike and that her love of Bollywood will be unacceptable in her new world.

There is a beautiful conclusion, glossary of unfamiliar terms, and an afterward to the story, as Sammy and her new friends finally solve the mystery of the painting. This is a beautifully written story that can teach several valuable lessons to willing learners, but it also gives wonderful insights on what it is like to be a newcomer in a strange, new world. We learn small details of what it is like growing up in India, and also what it is like to transition to America. Sammy learns that fears are fears, no matter who we are, or what we look like on the outside, and it does not matter which side of the ocean we are born on. Finding one’s own wings and flying on our own takes courage, trust, faith, and friendship.

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2019 (1/25/19) is in its 6th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Medallion Sponsors on board!
*View our 2019 Medallion Sponsors here:
*View our 2019 MCBD Author Sponsors here:
Medallion Level Sponsors
Honorary: Children’s Book Council, The Junior Library Guild,
Super Platinum: Make A Way Media
GOLD: Bharat Babies, Candlewick Press, Chickasaw Press, Juan Guerra and The Little Doctor / El doctorcito, KidLitTV,  Lerner Publishing Group, Plum Street Press,
SILVER: Capstone Publishing, Carole P. Roman, Author Charlotte Riggle, Huda Essa, The Pack-n-Go Girls,
BRONZE: Charlesbridge Publishing, Judy Dodge Cummings, Author Gwen Jackson, Kitaab World, Language Lizard – Bilingual & Multicultural Resources in 50+ Languages, Lee & Low Books, Miranda Paul and Baptiste Paul, Redfin, Author Gayle H. Swift,  T.A. Debonis-Monkey King’s Daughter, TimTimTom Books, Lin Thomas, Sleeping Bear Press/Dow Phumiruk, Vivian Kirkfield,
MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board
Honorary: Julie Flett, Mehrdokht Amini,
Author Janet Balletta, Author Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Josh Funk, Chitra Soundar, One Globe Kids – Friendship Stories, Sociosights Press and Almost a Minyan, Karen Leggett, Author Eugenia Chu, CultureGroove Books, Phelicia Lang and Me On The Page, L.L. Walters, Author Sarah Stevenson, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Hayley Barrett, Sonia Panigrah, Author Carolyn Wilhelm, Alva Sachs and Dancing Dreidels, Author Susan Bernardo, Milind Makwana and A Day in the Life of a Hindu Kid, Tara Williams, Veronica Appleton, Author Crystal Bowe, Dr. Claudia May, Author/Illustrator Aram Kim, Author Sandra L. Richards, Erin Dealey, Author Sanya Whittaker Gragg, Author Elsa Takaoka, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo, Anita Badhwar, Author Sylvia Liu, Feyi Fay Adventures, Author Ann Morris, Author Jacqueline Jules, CeCe & Roxy Books, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace, LEUYEN PHAM, Padma Venkatraman, Patricia Newman and Lightswitch Learning, Shoumi Sen, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Traci Sorell, Shereen Rahming, Blythe Stanfel, Christina Matula, Julie Rubini, Paula Chase, Erin Twamley, Afsaneh Moradian, Lori DeMonia, Claudia Schwam, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls Revolution, Soulful Sydney, Queen Girls Publications, LLC

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts
A Crafty Arab, Agatha Rodi Books, All Done Monkey, Barefoot Mommy, Biracial Bookworms, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes, Descendant of Poseidon Reads, Educators Spin on it,  Growing Book by Book, Here Wee Read, Joy Sun Bear/ Shearin Lee, Jump Into a Book, Imagination Soup,Jenny Ward’s Class, Kid World Citizen, Kristi’s Book Nook, The Logonauts, Mama Smiles, Miss Panda Chinese, Multicultural Kid Blogs, Raising Race Conscious Children, Shoumi Sen, Spanish Playground
TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Make A Way Media: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual @McChildsBookDay Twitter Party will be held 1/25/19 at 9:00pm.E.S.T. TONS of prizes and book bundles will be given away during the party ( a prize every 5 minutes!). GO HERE for more details.

Free Multicultural Books for Teachers:
Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators:
Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

1 comment:

  1. This is probably the lovliest review I've read in a while! THANK YOU for putting your heart and soul it sharing this book. I can't wait to read it!