Tuesday 7 July 2020

I Am Not A Label by Cerrie Burnell | Children's Book Review

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Wow. Every parent needs a copy of this book on their children's bookcase.

Cerrie Burnell (you may remember her from CBeebies) has put together stories of 34 artists, thinkers, athletes and activists with disabilities - past and present.

The foreword by Cerrie herself is wonderful. She explains that being born with one hand (and even having a hook at one point) meant that she never saw protagonists or heroines that were like her in any children's book that she read. The aim of this book is to introduce children to people who have disabilities but have managed to do amazing things.

My son C was delighted to see Beethoven on the first page because he is absolutely obsessed with composers. I often joke that they'd be his specialist Mastermind subject.

We learn about all types of disabilities, whether they are visible or hidden like being blind like Stevie Wonder, having autism like Temple Grandin and having spina bifida like Catalina Devantas.

It opened up a lot of conversation between C and myself. He had a lot of questions and was eager to learn more. 

It is a wonderfully educational book and I especially loved that they included a transgender person and mentioned about one person having relationships with both men and women. 

The glossary at the end is brilliant for easily explaining words that children may never have heard before such as cis-gender and fibromyalgia.

An absolutely fantastic compilation of stories featuring some of the most brilliant people. The illustrations are lovely too. We will know most, if not all, of the people included in this book but the way they have been drawn is stunning.

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