April 24, 2007

"The Family Book"

I'm a sucker for most any book by author/illustrator Todd Parr. His brightly colored bold-line illustrations make me smile. When combined with his underlying messages of respect and inclusion, the result is fantastic books for our modern kids.

"The Family Book" is not a book about adoption, but one I consider adoption-friendly. Using simple language, it describes many possible ways to be a family. Interracial, single-parent, step-parent, adoptive, and same-sex parent families are all represented, along with more basic descriptors ("Some families like to be quiet. Some families like to be noisy."). Interspersed throughout are reminders that there are certain things which describe all families ("They are sad when they lose someone they love").

Children will find many different pages which apply to their own family. Regardless of what political/social/religious/moral debates adults want to have about various family structures, all children deserve to have their unique family life validated and respected. This book does a wonderful job of doing just that.

Parr has a book specifically about adoption titled "We Belong Together" set to be released in November 2007. I'm looking forward to seeing his treatment of the topic.

(written & illustrated by Todd Parr; Little, Brown & Company, 2003)

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