Stand Tall

A children’s book on race, diversity and self-worth

Children - Picture Book
31 Pages
Reviewed on 05/13/2022
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Hello, my name is Teju Akande, author of Stand Tall, which is the first book in The Chronicles of Buster and Bean. I became inspired to start writing after my children experienced racial abuse and I could not find books that dealt with this subject in an engaging and practical way.

As a mother of ethnic minority children living in the UK, I want to raise my kids to be confident, proud of who they are and know that there are no limits to what they can achieve. Most importantly, to help them develop a strong sense of self-worth and embrace their uniqueness!

My aim is to empower children and their loved ones by talking about differences and encouraging them to identify, appreciate, and celebrate the diverse cultures all around us.

I live in South England with my husband and 2 young children.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite

Stand Tall: The Chronicles of Buster and Bean by Teju Akande is heartwarming and inspiring as it celebrates the uniqueness of human individuality. At the center of the story is young Buster, who lives in the village of Bon Mot with his mom, dad, and little sister Bean. Buster belongs to a multiracial family of British, Nigerian, and Canadian lineage. As a spirited and energetic young boy, he loves playing video games, football, and the violin. One day while playing football, one of the boys named Jak breaks the rules and ruins the game. When Buster tells him to follow the rules, Jak spews out name-calling that made Buster sad throughout the day. At home, his dad makes his famous chocolate brownies, and the whole family talks to Buster in his room. Buster tells his family that he wishes to be different so that no one would call him a horrid name. This is where his mom and dad affectionately enlighten him on the joys of being different and what a person’s uniqueness can offer to the world.

Teju Akande is on a noble crusade to delight young readers while creating awareness of the value of diversity and the power of embracing one’s uniqueness. She has written an inspiring little tale as an invaluable reference to stress her point. I like the way she uses the game of soccer to leverage her storyline, as many children enjoy the sport, and it will be sure to engage them in what the story has to tell. At the same time, Zeynep Dural’s illustrations give balance to the story. Her solid colors put emphasis on diversity and evoke the necessary emotions. The recipe for Dad’s famous chocolate brownies is an additional fun activity that the whole family can try. Stand Tall is a story that I do not hesitate to recommend because it gives children encouragement to push through their obstacles as well as experience their moments of joy.