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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Unique Starts with YOU! is a children’s picture book written by Jennifer Campbell and illustrated by Pardeep Mehra. Try to imagine seeing what makes you special or different as being your own amazing gift. It’s often hard for kids to see things this way. Being like everyone else in school or the playground seems to offer a sense of safety, of belonging. Being different often makes a child feel alienated as well as making them a target for bullies. This book offers kids a different way of looking at what makes them unique. Rather than feeding into the notion that being like everyone else, or envying others who seem to fit in, as an ideal, Campbell’s picture book celebrates the diversity that is a natural part of the human existence. Her upbeat story declares that the gift that makes a kid different is a super-power, something to revel in and feel good about. She concludes her book with a challenge to the young reader to think about what makes them unique and special. There’s also a place for kids to draw their self-portraits and list those unique qualities.
Unique Starts with YOU! is an upbeat and inspiring storybook that challenges kids to look at what makes them different as something to celebrate and feel good about. Each of the bright and colorful panels in the book shows unique kids having a grand time being themselves as well as being a valued part of their peer groups. Her book is a grand selection for storytime that provides ample material for a follow-up group discussion about what qualities each child sees as their own super-power. Pardeep Mehra’s illustrations work brilliantly at bringing Campbell’s world to life. Unique Starts with YOU! is highly recommended.