You Are Everything

Triangle Square. Nov. 2023. 36p. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781644213094.
K-Gr 3–Inspired by the 13th-century poet Rumi’s work, this picture book invites children to think about their connection to the world and how we are all connected from the beginning of time and space to our present human form. Using rhythmic text, Arabian (The Donkey’s Gone!, The Heart’s Garden) contemplates the vastness of the universe and asks readers to wonder about our special place in this world. “In the beginning/ before there were any stars/ or any suns/ or any sky,/ before there was any place/ or any thing/ there was YOU.” Using soft charcoal grays and golds, Shakoori successfully embraces this mystical awareness of being, not only as an individual but as part of the universe. “And so,/ once in a while,/ if you stop what you’re doing/ and just BE,/ you might remember/ (maybe a little, or maybe a lot)…you’re also EVERYTHING ELSE in the world.” This is a gentle title of being and transformation that will surely inspire awareness about who we are, and how we are part of a larger world.
VERDICT The concept may be a little complicated for younger children to understand completely, but this thought-provoking book will help readers gain mindful insight and inspire a greater awareness of self.

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