I recently took a vacation in the Denver area and fell in love with a certain bookstore-The Tattered Cover Bookstore. There are two locations, but I fell in love with the smaller store in the Historic LoDo section. The best thing about this bookstore was it’s opening hours-6:30am! And at my 7am arrival there were already people sitting in comfy chairs with books. I wish there were more bookstores who opened early, also more who had such amazing decor!
— Sylvia Plath (via maxkirin)
I have long been aware of the need for diversity in books, and in particular children’s literature. I do not mean only diversity of race, but also of lifestyles, of mental difficulties, of physical disabilities. It saddens me to think a child could search a whole library and be unable to find themselves represented in a book. I applaud every effort to rectify this, to add to the conversation of making diversity something we find in books as simply as we do in life.
Recently, my 5 year old niece asked me a question which made me both smile and want to cry at the same time. She is a beautiful melting pot of Irish, Scottish, Native American, and Hispanic (with a few little strands of French, German and Dutch). While coloring pictures of princesses she was coloring them all with brown hair for her older sister. Though older sister has brown hair, Little Bit has black hair. She asked me if it was alright to color the princess’s hair black, even though she is supposed to be blonde. I loved that she was already coloring them differently because it was what she wanted to do, but at the same time I was a bit sad she felt she had to ask if it was alright, if it was wrong for her to change their hair. I wondered then who does she see herself in? Is there a princess she feels represents her? She is an avid bookworm already at 5, and I wonder which literary character will embolden her in their pages? Will she find herself in a book or will she wander the library looking for something she’ll never find?