The Boy Who Found His Voice

Macmillan Young Listeners. Jun. 2024. 7p. $1.99. ISBN 9781250355416.
PreS-Gr 2–Teen activist and artist Gordon proves his triple-threat prowess as writer, illustrator, and narrator of his picture book about his speech differences: “This book is dedicated to kids who get tongue-tied. Just know your words are worth the wait.” Tyler can’t get his words to “come out right.” With his mother’s help, he learns to “loudly, proudly” use his art and his voice to declare, “This is me.” For the most fulfilling experience, a read-along is essential: to pick only print is to miss Gordon’s vulnerable narration; to choose just aural means overlooking Gordon’s imaginative, humorous art—including his self-portrait cover of his 2021 debut, We Can. Also not in audio (but should be) is Gordon’s author’s note in which he shares his deafness at birth, the surgery that returned his hearing but caused a stutter, and art as his best therapy.
VERDICT Libraries need all formats to share with future artists, activists, and superstars.

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