What My Daddy Loves

HarperCollins/Clarion. May 2023. 32p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9780358588771.
PreS-Gr 3–At times poignant and at other times expressly affirmative, this book is a heartwarming homage to African American daddies everywhere. On each spread, Figueroa trusts the children’s perspectives to describe their fathers: “My daddy loves starting the day with me,” and “My daddy loves eating with me.” Readers will appreciate fathers and children spending time together, from quiet moments exploring the night sky from the rooftop or nurturing a vegetable garden, to joyful moments building blocks or careening through the supermarket in the basket, to tender moments when a child needs a father for comfort and support or a good night kiss. Each moment is strikingly supported by the artwork. Vivid color illustrations depict Black fathers with their daughters and sons playing, exploring, creating, and discovering together. Daddies come in all shapes, sizes, and ages, and are depicted in an array of occupations and hobbies. Figueroa’s illustrations truly shine in vibrant color and digital clarity that capture the nuances of expression and form of adults and children in conventional situations with creative appeal. Each illustration is pleasantly crafted with humor and a touch of whimsy.
VERDICT A long-awaited, refreshing celebration of African American families in roles that are both reflective, but also universal as part of the community of families everywhere.

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