Salaam Reads / Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Author: Guidroz, Rukhsanna
Brand: Salaam Reads / Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Number Of Pages: 32
Release Date: 18-06-2019
Details: Product Description
“Glorious.” —Kirkus Reviews
A colorful journey of self-discovery and identity, this sweet, vibrant picture book follows young Leila as she visits her grandmother’s house for their weekly family dinner, and finds parts of herself and her heritage in the family, friends, and art around her.
Sometimes I’m not sure if I like being me.
When Leila looks in the mirror, she doesn’t know if she likes what she sees. But when her grandmother tells her the saffron beads on her scarf suit her, she feels a tiny bit better. So, Leila spends the rest of their family dinner night on the lookout for other parts of her she does like.
Follow Leila’s journey as she uses her senses of sight, smell, taste, touch to seek out the characteristics that make up her unique identity, and finds reasons to feel proud of herself, just as she is.
From School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—In her sophomore offering, Guidroz (Mina and the Monsoon), introduces Leila, a Pakistani-American girl visiting Naani (her maternal grandmother) for dinner. The book is an explosion of color and an exploration of family, togetherness, and belonging. Upon entering the house and looking in a mirror, Leila initially expresses low self-esteem. But as she moves through the evening, she describes her family and their traditions, and this reflects back her own true beauty in the end. Mirtalipova renders the entire book, especially Naani's house, in great detail, from the intricate flower patterns on the endpapers, rugs, and pillows, to the ornate metalwork on the staircase, and the delicate ornaments and books from Pakistan that Leila admires. The colors are lush pops of orange, pink, teal, and gold, which Guidroz describes in Naani's voice as the colors of lentils, pomegranates, cucumber skins, and saffron. A scarf in this last color inspires Leila to see herself as she is in the mirror, "A beautiful girl dressed in a sweet saffron scarf." Leila describes her evening using all of her senses, as she smells the ghee, and hears Naani's bangles. The cumulative experience of the book is being immersed in this warm environment. A slight stumble is the brief introduction of a gardening neighbor named "Miguel," whose appearance disrupts, rather than adds to, the narrative. Seven words, which appear throughout the book, are defined in a glossary, though their origin languages (Arabic and Hindi) are not named. VERDICT Leila's journey is a beautiful one to behold, and children will want to take it with her as they discover the power of love and family traditions.—Clara Hendricks, Cambridge Public Library, MA
"A glorious book that's a feast for both eyes and ears, this story set in a multicultural context will ring true for children of all stripes. ",
"Every page is a vibrant celebration of Pakistani food, art, cloth, language, and culture, from mandala patterns to the elaborate rugs on the walls and the glossary with pronunciations and definitions of Arabic terms. The use of colors—pomegranate, lentil, cucumber—is stunning, starting with the gorgeous gold leaf of the title. Even the endpapers are exquisite. This book is a strong addition to any diverse book collection and would do well in classrooms and libraries and parents’ laps alike.",
Booklist Online Exlcusive
"Leila’s journey is a beautiful one to behold, and children will want to take it with her as they discover the power of love and family traditions.",
School Library Journal
"A lyrical story about identity, family origins, and self-worth.",
"This is a warm celebration of extended family and the way that such intergenerational connections can help model futures for youngsters negotiating their own identity.",
About the Author
Rukhsanna Guidroz was born in Manchester, England. With a Persian-Indian father and a Chinese mother, Rukhsanna was always drawn to traveling to faraway places. After studying French at King’s College, London, and political scien