The Day You Begin

by Jacqueline Woodson and Rafael López

“There will be times when the world feels like a place that you’re standing... read more

“There will be times when the world feels like a place that you’re standing all the way outside of.” Maybe no one understands “the way words curl from your mouth” in the language of home. Maybe the experiences you’ve had feel like nothing compared to others’, or the food you love is seen as strange, or “the game isn’t one you can ever really play.” The vivid sense of difference, and isolation, experienced by four children in the opening pages of this picture book invites all readers and listeners to consider the strength of “your own brave self…There will be times when you walk into a room and no one there is quite like you until the day you begin to share your stories … this is the day you begin to find the places inside your laughter and your lunches, your books, your travel and your stories, where every new friend has something a little like you—and something else so fabulously not quite like you at all.” Buoyant mixed-media illustrations lend a celebratory feel to a book in which selfhood is triumphant. Highly Commended, 2019 Charlotte Zolotow Award (Ages 4–8)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2019

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