Goodness but this book is adorable!
Being a nanny for a very long time, I have encountered many different parents’ varied thoughts and feelings on the color pink and what position it plays in gender roles, despite being nothing more than a color. Also, being a nanny for a long time, I have been waiting for a book like this the whole time.
Writer and illustrator Adelina Winfield starts her book “Anything but Pink” with a multiracial couple planning for their soon-to-be baby girl’s baby shower. Their only request: Anything but Pink! They want blue and green, purple and orange, because as they see it, “… all baby girls wear pink and we want our baby girl to be different.”
So, no one brings pink things to their “Nothing PInk Party.” They decorate her room with no pink, have no pink in her wardrobe and none of her toys are pink. And she is born in her yellow, grey, aqua and orange room and is wrapped in her green, yellow and white blankets. She wears her yellow flowered onesies, her aqua overalls and her red dresses and life is good.
Can you guess what happened?
Because I’ve worked for families like this before, I knew exactly what was going to happen. Yep, their little girl, Starri, got to an age where she could voice her own opinions and she of course wanted Pink. She wanted ALL the pink. Everything needed to be pink. The parents were baffled, but she convinced them that there were much more to pink than they’d thought. She saw all the different shades of pink as wonderful and exciting. Mom and dad, wanting to be supportive and nurturing, allowed her to express herself the way she wants.
Eventually though, they reason with her that there are a lot of great colors that can compliment pink; that all the colors in the rainbow have value and purpose. The story ends with the great compromise that “Variety is the Spice of Life!”
Like I said, I have been waiting for a book like this for a long time and will be getting copies for all the families with daughters I work with in the future. Not only is it a great lesson desperately needed to be expressed, but it is expressed in such a whimsical and delightful way. The language and the repetition of a few key phrases I imagine, make it fun to read aloud.
The illustrations and use of color–or lack of it–are delightful, simple and sophisticated at the same time. From crayon backgrounds on texted pages to silhouetted characters so well rendered we have no doubt who the shadow belongs to, is all visually stimulating and the characters are all pretty charmingly portrayed.
I hope one day this author–or author/illustrators of her caliber–next take on the issue of what happens when a boy loves pink. What society tries to instill in him, assumes about him, how little there is for him to wear or play with if he doesn’t also like bows, flowers, dollies or ponies. Because man, I could really use a book like that right now.
- Age Range: 3-7 year
- Grade Level: Preschool – 2
- Paperback: 32 pages
- Price: 9.99 Print (Paperback) 4.99 on Kindle
- Where to Purchase: On Amazon
I am honored to be included in “Here Wee Read.” A group of book reviewers and bloggers focusing on diverse books, mostly children’s. I love so much the very idea of this group and hope to do them proud. So, this is the place where I have to tell you that in exchange for a free book, I have agreed to give this book an honest review. No other payment was received and I am under no obligation to be positive in this–or any other book I review.