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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Get Ready to Celebrate Multicultural Children's Book Day, January 27th #ReadYourWorld

Ever since I had my first child almost 25 years ago, I have believed what children view, read and play with should "look like them." When I was a young girl, the majority of the images I saw were not multicultural - and I noticed. I did not want that to be something my children noticed or even thought about. Although today things are markedly different we're still lacking and that's what makes Multicultural Children's Book Day important to me. Mark your calendars for January 27, 2016, to celebrate, discuss and share Multicultural Children's Book Day. 


I am honored to be one of the writers paired with an author to highlight their book and share about Multicultural Children's Book Day. I received a complimentary copy of My Forgotten Self: A Story About a Girl, a Powerful Encounter, and a Universal Message by Lynettea G. Willis, Ph.D. (Any opinions expressed are my own. Please read my complete disclosure policy for more information.)

The mission of the MCCBD is to not only raise awareness for children’s books that celebrate diversity; but to get also more of these books into classrooms and libraries. It is important to have diversity in children's literature. Young readers need to see themselves with the pages of books, and other media, they read and they need to be able to experience other cultures, languages, traditions and religions. 

The MCCBD team encourages readers, parents, teachers, caregivers, and librarians to follow along with the event details, author visits, and fun book reviews by following a multicultural children's book linky and via their hashtag #ReadYourWorld on Twitter and other social media. I'm going to follow with my children; I really enjoy opening up the world for them.



As I mentioned, I received the book My Forgotten Self and I could not wait to share it with my children. My girls - Amareah, 10 and Anna, 8 - were the only two home at the time so I read the book to them. A lot of times I'll just give books to them to read, but I really wanted to participate in the reading of the book.

The first thing of note are the illustrations throughout the book, which are done by Michele Phillips. They are glorious depictions of the story in a soft and somehow simultaneously vibrant way. The detail of the character's imagination are depicted and the consistency of her look as she grows is spectacular.

The second thing I noticed was that I could relate, from the very beginning, with Tiev, the little girl we read about in the book. Tiev loved to think about the many things she wanted to do in life and who she wanted to be when she grew up. Doesn't that sound familiar? I don't know any child who doesn't daydream about what they want to be when they grow up. I was one of those children, and from the beginning of the book, I could tell my daughters were interested in how the story would progress.

Throughout the book, Tiev decided on different paths she wanted to take like being a mother or an explorer. Whenever she shared her decisions with family members they gave her all the reasons why she could not be what she wanted to be. My 10-year-old daughter Amareah started getting a bit miffed at all the negativity Tiev was getting from her family. I heard her mumble, "She can be anything she wants to be."

When Tiev encounters a powerful, loving Being she is able to see who she really is, who she can be and the gifts within her. Isn't that how things go? Whether it's people in our lives who are unwittingly trying to discourage us or our own negative, interval voices wreaking havoc, it can seem like we can't get a leg up. But when we focus on that higher power, that inner voice we can realize amazing things about ourselves.

Last thing I noticed, the book touched my heart and it moved my daughters as well. This may be a book geared toward young people, but it is one that will resonate with all of us. 

                                  "Do not let others define what they did not create... 
You are a treasure... Remember this now and forever!" 

~My Forgotten Self book, scheduled release: February 6, 2016


"Tiev, is a young girl who decides to dream about her path in life.  Her dreams are vivid and exciting; however, when she shares them with her well-intentioned family they quickly tell her why she cannot be any of the things her heart desires.  Feeling lost, hurt and confused, Tiev, encounters a being, I Am.  Tiev and I Am embark on an amazing journey wherein Tiev learns who she truly is and the gifts inherent in each of her desired paths." 


All of the bloggers and writers can keep the book they were matched with or we can donate it to our local library or school. I've been batting this around for a couple of days and can't decide which I want to donate to. A new thought has emerged: I can donate the book to our local library then buy two copies - one to keep and one to give to my children's school. Sounds like a plan right?

I'm glad you agree because I want to challenge you to purchase one or two of the books from the list for yourself and a school or library. Your donation will help spread the word about MCCBD. Here is a list of resources to get you started: Book List or click on one of the images below to browse my suggestions (contains affiliate links).


Co-creators of the event: Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom and Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book/Audrey Press. You can view their bios on the MCCBD site.

Multicultural Children’s Book day 2016 Medallion Level Sponsors! #ReadYourWorld

CoHosts: Multicultural Children’s Book Day has 12 amazing co-hosts and you can view them here.

Click the image below to order a copy of the book for yourself. It is an affiliate link.

Don't forget to visit Multicultural Children's Book Day site for more information and also keep up with all of the #ReadYourWorld happenings by following them on Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook. Also take a few moments to visit the author's site: My Forgotten Self.

Thank you for reading and have a happy Multicultural Children's Book Day. 

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