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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Needing help is not a bad thing. We all need help from time to time. It might be glasses to see better or hearing aids to hear better, or someone to talk to when depressed, or even someone to give extra help when you don’t understand your schoolwork. Abby needs her crutches to walk. She was born that way. But some of the children at her new school don’t understand. That is until Abby sits up boldly and proclaims, “I am not weird! Everyone needs help with something – it’s okay to be different. I’m amazing the way I am!” Abby is one brave little girl, and, with her sparkling purple crutches, she is a force to be reckoned with, even if she can’t walk on her own.
Suzanne Liggions-Way’s picture book story, I’m Amazing the Way I Am, is a super story to help young readers accept differences, whether they are differences in physical appearances or in physical abilities. The main character, Abby, has sparkly purple crutches. She can’t walk without them. It was the way she was born. But Abby doesn’t let that get her down. And she proves to others that she is just as good as they are, in spite of the fact that she needs help in order to walk. Even when the bully, Billy, laughs at her and calls her weird, Abby puts on a brave face and points out her amazing ability to be herself. The colorful illustrations help carry the story along and the very strong female character of Abby provides young readers with a role model to look up to. A powerful story told with charm and compassion.