Children’s reading and play advocates Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book and Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom teamed up to create an ambitious (and much needed) national event. On January 27th, Jump into a Book and Pragmatic Mom will be presenting the first ever Multicultural Children’s Book Day as a way of celebrating diversity in children’s books.For more information on the day please explore the website for the day here.
For my part in this wonderful event I offer my review of Diego's Dragon, Book One: Spirits of the Sun by Kevin Gerard and Jennifer Fong, which I received from Crying Cougar Press.
The book is an urban fantasy for middle grade and young adult readers written by Kevin Gerard and illustrated by Jennifer Fong. Eleven-year-old Diego Ramirez wins a district-wide writing contest for sixth graders. When an author visits his school to award his prize, Diego Ramirez has no idea how much his life is about to change. Author Nathan Sullivan visits his school and hands Diego his prize; a handsome, glistening black dragon statue, and shakes his hand and leaves him to his friends. After hearing the name Magnifico spoken aloud by family and friends and some unusual happenings, Diego gives the name to his new dragon. He did not know just how fitting the name was. Magnifico is the leader of the Sol Dragones, dragons that live within the magical fires of the sun. Nathan Sullivan is the earth's connection to the mysterious creatures and it was his task to find Magnifico's guide. As Magnifico comes to life he becomes quite mischievous, playing tricks on Diego to embarrass him while helping him discover his destiny. In a climactic journey, Diego frees his people and suffers a terrible loss by guiding Magnifico to their goal.
See my full review of the book here.
The hosts and co-creators of Multicultural Children’s Book Day.Valarie Budayr of Jump Into a Book is a best-selling children’s author of The Fox Diaries: The Year the Foxes Came to our Garden and The Ultimate Guide To Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. She is passionate about making kid’s books come alive and is proud to be a play and reading advocate. Valarie’s mission is to inspire children,families, and communities, to experience and create our world together while having fun.
Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom is a Harvard grad with a love of children’s books (picture books through YA) and sneaking in teachable moments in art, science, math, foreign language and language arts. Mia is passionate about getting kids excited about reading and helping parents ensure that their child is successful at school.
Our Wonderful Sponsors!
Wisdom Tales Press:
Wisdom Tales Press is a children’s book imprint of World Wisdom for the purpose of sharing the wisdom and beauty of cultures around the world with young readers and their families. Visit Wisdom Tales Books.
One of the most admired and respected publishing companies in the U.S., Chronicle Books was founded in 1967 and over the years has developed a reputation for award-winning, innovative books. Recognized as one of the 50 best small companies to work for in the U.S. (and the only independent publisher to receive this award), the company continues to challenge conventional publishing wisdom, setting trends in both subject and format, maintaining a list that includes illustrated titles in design, art, architecture, photography, food, lifestyle and pop culture, as well as much-admired books for children and ancillary products through its gift division. Chronicle Books’ objective is to create and distribute exceptional publishing that’s instantly recognizable for its spirit, creativity, and value. For more information about Chronicle Books, visit www.chroniclekids.com
Lee & Low Books:
An award-winning children’s book publisher focusing on diversity. Our books are about everyone, for everyone. LEE & LOW BOOKS is a children’s book publisher focusing on diversity. Our award-winning multicultural books are about everyone, for everyone. Our goal is to meet the need for stories that all children can identify with and enjoy. We publish picture books, middle grade, and YA titles, including bilingual books under our CBP imprint and science fiction and fantasy under our Tu Books imprint.