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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
How do we see ourselves? Unique? Individual? Beautiful? Actually, we’re all beautiful. Like the night sky shining above us, each one of us is different, but still unique, individual and beautiful. Even a fruit, like a pear, can look different from the other fruits on the trees. That doesn’t mean it’s not good to eat. Even a raggedy blanket that has been dragged around just about everywhere has a beauty all its own. Just for what it does: it offers comfort and warmth, which is a beautiful thing, don’t you think? “Just like beautiful you.”
Sarah Klaiber’s picture book story, Beautiful You, is a real charmer. Told in rhyming verse and in the first person from a child’s perspective, the plot begins with a vision of the night sky and all the beautiful differences seen above. Each new discovery, each new beautiful difference, is highlighted for its uniqueness, its individuality, and its beauty. And the author concludes each example, with the line: “Just like beautiful you.” This is a real confidence-builder type of story. Accompanied by colorful illustrations, it’ll appeal to the young reader, helping them to improve their reading skills while also learning some difficult concepts about beauty. Sarah Klaiber, a mental health advocate, knows how to reach out to young people and present such a difficult concept in a way young people will understand. The comparisons she uses such as the night sky, the pear, the blanket, are excellent. Beautiful You is a valuable tool, a passionate, heartfelt story to help young readers see their own beauty within despite their differences. After all, it’s our differences which make us stronger.