I Am Born to Be Awesome!

Random. (Step into Reading). Jan. 2023. 32p. Tr $14.99. ISBN 9780593433225; pap. $5.99. ISBN 9780593433218.
PreS-K–A group of friends demonstrates different ways that they are born to be awesome. Playful rhymes assist pre-readers to sound out the words, and brightly colored illustrations support short text phrases on each page. Children participate in a wide variety of activities, such as baking, eating, playing with cars, taking a bath, and playing sports. All the characters in this story are children of color, with a wide range of skin tones represented. Each page has one or two short sentences about a child in action. The sentences form rhyming couplets on every page or two pages. The titular phrase is interspersed throughout. “I love my beats! I love to eat! I am born to be awesome!” The page showing a child at the barbershop shows another of Roe’s books, Cool Cuts, on the shelf, giving a nod to other books in her “Happy Hair” series, of which this title is a part. There is a lot of action in this book, all captured in colorful, animated illustrations. Children will want to read it again and again.
VERDICT A first purchase for early reader collections.

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