Reviewed by Kristine Zimmerman for Readers' Favorite
We're the Same, We're Different and We All Belong by KayJay Miller is a beautiful picture book that embraces the differences that make us unique. Six-year-old Marnie is our guide through this story. She shares the wisdom she has learned from her Mama, that everyone has many layers to them. People are more than what you see on the outside. Marnie jubilantly shares the things she loves about herself. She celebrates her thick, beautiful hair, that she can do difficult things (even if they are scary), and her self-confidence. Marnie also talks about a time when people judged her based on her looks alone and how that made her feel. Throughout the story, kids are encouraged to answer questions about what makes them unique.
KayJay Miller's We're the Same, We're Different and We All Belong is one of the best books I've read about celebrating and respecting diversity. Everything about this book is top-notch. Marnie is a character that kids will immediately want as their friend. She is confident yet also vulnerable and engaging. The illustrations are vibrant and full of life and emotions. I love how they are sprinkled throughout the text in addition to the full-color pages. The layout of this book is so inviting with varied text sizes and formatting. The message of diversity and acceptance is woven expertly throughout the story. KayJay Miller has crafted a luminous character in Marnie. I hope to see her in future stories. As a retired children's librarian, I've read thousands of picture books, and We're the Same, We're Different and We All Belong is one of the best.