A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Readers learn affirmations they can apply in their own times of trouble. They learn the meanings of words like "courage" and "resilience" and ways to embody those qualities. Kids get a glimpse into the practices of yoga and mindfulness and instructions on how to apply them in their lives.
I am in control of my thoughts and feelings. Courage is not the absence of fear, but action in the face of fear. When I am courageous, I win.
Positive Role Models
The main character uses empowering "I" statements to overcome fear and challenges. All of the characters work together to convey the power of compassion and teamwork.
The main character is ambiguous in ethnic background and gender. The supporting characters represent differing ethnic backgrounds and genders.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that I Am Courage: A Book of Resilience is the fifth book in the I Am series, which encourages mindfulness and well-being, written by Susan Verde and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds. The book uses positive affirmations to empower readers, reminding them that the strength to overcome fear and troublesome times is already within them. Diversity and ambiguity of characters' identities allow many readers to see themselves reflected on the pages. The Author's Note addresses misconceptions about bravery, normalizes fear, and makes a connection to yoga and mindfulness.
Is It Any Good?
This inspiring picture book delivers a simple, strong message that readers of all ages can apply to their lives. I Am Courage: A Book of Resilience is told in a series of positive affirmations that can make this a motivational read-aloud with call-and-response. Parents will appreciate the potential for character building, and kids will appreciate relatable characters and an applicable theme. The Author's Note at the end brings home the message about inner strength, and the sketches of yoga poses and mindfulness techniques make the book's affirming statements attainable for young readers.
The charming illustrations are relatively simple, so as not to take away from the powerful words. Older readers will be able to pick up on the fact that color subtly conveys the mood on each page. Pages depicting fear or hardship are mostly done in hues of blue and purple, while pages revealing courage, resilience, and triumph radiate yellow. This must-read book can have a lasting positive impact on readers.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.