I Love My Body Because

S. & S. Jun. 2022. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781534494954.
K-Gr 3–Children of a variety of ethnicities and abilities, some using wheelchairs, are shown in bright colorful illustrations doing various activities—playing, reading, swimming, running, roller skating, etc. Although the images are cheerful and fun, depicting a variety of bodies, and the authors’ intention was clearly to provide a message of body positivity and inclusiveness, the central concept of the book becomes lost in the vignettes. It veers from activities (“I love my body because it takes me where I want to go,” “It can swim, lie on the beach, and build sand castles”), to its capacity (“My body is home to my brain”), to reminders about hygiene such as washing hands and brushing teeth, and continues on to sympathetic statements, e.g., “We can get frustrated and mad when our bodies don’t do what we want them to.” Some odd juxtapositions interrupt the already uneven flow of the text, such as the sentence, “It’s strong enough to decide what it wants to do,” next to a boy sitting in a wheelchair. The language is often stilted: “Together, with our bodies, we can take a stroll down a boulevard.” Characters are depicted with skin tones ranging from very light tan to dark brown.
VERDICT There are better books on body positivity such as Tyler Feder’s Bodies Are Cool.

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