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Reviewed by Deborah Lloyd for Readers' Favorite
The children's book, The Face Painter's Mirror, crafted by Pamela Melon, delivers an essential message. Children's voices need to be heard, even when an adult may disagree with their choices due to stereotypical thinking. In this book, the topic of gender stereotyping is explored. Ryder and Amber were excited to have their faces painted during a festival. Ryder wanted a magical rainbow unicorn, while Amber wanted to be a T-Rex. However, the face painter asked if she could give them a surprise instead. Ryder's face had a shark painting, while Amber's face was covered by a butterfly. With these new personalities, they found it difficult to play together and be friends. Their second attempt was also unsuccessful. Finally, the face painter remembered a time when she was told she could not like something, and she agreed to paint their choices of images. It was magical!
There are several lessons depicted in this captivating story: how gender stereotyping still exists in our societies; how frequently children's opinions and voices are dismissed; the wonderful experience of magic for children. These lessons can be reiterated every time a parent reads this book to a child. The text flows smoothly, making it a delightful book to read out loud. The beautiful illustrations are realistic and add to the magical qualities of the story. In her first children's book, The Face Painter's Mirror, author Pamela Melon has hit a home run. Let's hope she will write more books for youngsters with equally important messages!