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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
This is Me Now... by Ms. Kimms is a sweet story about a robot learning how to accept herself, have confidence, and find her inner strength. One day, Diane is playing ball with her friends when she falls and damages one of her arms, causing her arms to no longer match. She struggles to accept these new changes and how people react to her through bouts of anger, confusion, and insecurity. Through her journey, she learns how to accept herself for who she is now, gain self-confidence, and discover her inner power. The story also serves as a lesson in being kind to others and learning how to accept changes within ourselves. Embark on this journey of self-acceptance, personal growth, and inner strength told through rhyme and illustrations that will guide children of all ages to discover their self-confidence and empowerment.
The story has a rhyme scheme that creates a lyrical quality and pairs well with the eccentric and bright illustrations. The illustrations are fun, humorous, and creative with vibrant colors, expressive faces (even in the sun), and curved lines that add personality to each of the drawings. Kimms incorporates the perspective of others which makes Diane feel like she's an outsider. The story weaves in various situations from hearing a child talking about her to the lack of consideration from her friend. Being kind to others is a lesson naturally woven into the story through Diane's experiences, which further her own insecurities about herself. Kimms encompasses the feeling of being alone through how Diane struggles with being different and processes a variety of emotions as she comes to terms with the changes in her life.
The story captures a genuine approach to anxiety and stress over feeling different, having an injury or disability, and feeling like an outsider. Kimms explores Diane's emotions with a genuine tone and honest approach that shows her confusion, anger, and hurt as she faces her fear that no one will see her for who she is and for what she achieves, only for what she's lost and how she's different. Her journey begins with her fall and ends with her lifting herself up in acceptance of who she is while teaching a lesson in being kind. Through the various side characters such as Diane's friend Porkchop, Kimms is honest about the impact others can have on self-esteem and personal growth by showing the importance of acceptance and kindness. This is Me Now... is a great story about confidence, self-acceptance, and empowerment that will appeal to all ages.