Chicks Rule!

Chicks Rule! illus. by Renée Kurilla. 40p. Abrams. Feb. 2019. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781419734144.
PreS-Gr 2—This inspirational picture book demonstrates how girls can accomplish anything when they value their unique abilities and depend on one another in the face of opposition. In the opening panels, one enthusiastic chick builds a paper rocket and is met with a "No Chicks Allowed" sign on the Rocket Club door. Vivid and expressive digital illustrations turn these first wordless scenes into a series of emotions that set the stage for what follows: excitement, jubilation, confusion, and anger. Colorful spreads show how chicks from all walks of life will not be denied in pursuing their interests, which include riding bikes, playing music, playing sports, coding, and art. As each chick is described, the rocket chick leads the line and others follow through a country landscape until they arrive at a barn door. "Though they've followed separate tracks/a common hurdle holds them back." Once they're at the barn door, there is simply a glimpse of a rooster's coxcomb and a word bubble that reiterates, "No Chicks Allowed." Unsatisfied, the rocket chick crosses out "no" on the sign from the Rocket Club she's been carrying, and the chicks band together to create something magnificent. Although the chicks are not human, there is an attempt to express diversity through the colors of feathers, their interests, and their dress. For example, one of the chicks wears a hijab. Repetition, rhyming, and alliteration enhance the flow of the story and make this an excellent candidate for sharing aloud.
VERDICT A fun and lively read-aloud about empowering girls, and a splendid example of what a community can accomplish when everyone is included.

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