Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You by Sonia Sotomayor, illustrated by Rafael López

Published by Philomel Books

Image result for just ask be different be brave be you

Image result for just ask be different be brave be you

Summary:  Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor begins the book by telling her own story, how she was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes at the age of 7.  She sometimes felt self-conscious when she had to give herself insulin injections around others. Although she felt like other kids were curious, no one ever asked her about what she was doing.  She encourages readers to ask questions if they want to know about something they don’t understand. The book then looks at kids planting a garden; just like the plants in the garden, each child is different in some way: one is blind, one is in a wheelchair, two have different forms of autism, and so on.  Each child tells a little about himself or herself, then asks a question like, “Do you ever take medicine to be healthy?” or “How do you use your senses?” Sonia finishes up by celebrating everyone’s abilities, and how all the differences make the world a more interesting place. Her final question is, “What will you do with your powers?”  Also available in a Spanish-language edition, ¡Solo Pregunta! 32 pages; ages 4-8.

Pros:  This is a great introduction to a wide range of conditions that affect many different kids.  The tone is accepting and celebrating, and it’s a nice way to encourage children to talk to each other about differences in a respectful way.  The illustrations are gorgeous, showing a diverse group of children frolicking around a beautiful garden.

Cons:  I wish there had been more specifics about how a child (or adult) should ask someone about a physical difference.

Image result for solo pregunta sotomayor

If you would like to buy the English edition on Amazon, click here.

If you would like to buy the Spanish edition on Amazon, click here.

One thought on “Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You by Sonia Sotomayor, illustrated by Rafael López

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