Written By: Jessica Dee Humphreys and the Hon. Rona Ambrose
Illustrated by: Simone Shin
For Ages: 7-10 years
Topics Covered: Feminism, Global Community, Holidays, Inequalities, Growing Up.
Summary: This non-fiction book takes a look at a holiday we’re celebrating today, the International Day of the Girl! The book is setup to tell stories of girls’ lives around the world, and how they were empowered to make positive changes in their community. The girls in the stories are an amalgamation of research by the author, and information that she gathered from various global organizations that do work with different marginalized communities.
The book also has a timeline of events that took place to finally confirm the International Day of the Girl and a bunch of statistics and sources for the inequalities that are discussed in the girls’ lives. Malnutrition in India, inaccessibility for wheelchair users, and access to bathrooms in school are just a few of the topics that readers learn about. After the story there is a small box of information that talk more in-depth about what part of the world the short story is set in, and what changes would make the treatment more equitable for girls living in that area.
I really like the setup of this book, even though it’s not really a storybook per se. It’s more of a teaching or reference tool, and I really appreciate the additional information in the back. It’s difficult sometimes to read about all of the systemic inequalities in the world, and how they negatively impact girls’ disproportionately. However, once our eyes are opened to what different people and communities need, plans can be made and awareness raised. I also like that there are organizations listed in the back that are already doing the work, which could inspire readers to get involved with specific causes that spark passion and a desire to create change.
This book was kindly sent by Kids Can Press, but all opinions are my own!
Jessica Dee Humphreys writes books about things that matter to young people (and adults). Jessica grew up reading. She read her first book (Oscar Otter) when she was three years old. From then on, Jessica read all the time. She read all through school, she read all through university, she read while walking to work, she read in the bath. She read new books and classic books, funny books and sweet books, strange books and beautiful books. Jessica read her favorite books over and over again. She read all of the Anne of Green Gables books dozens of times (her most beloved is Anne of the Island). And then she started writing.
Jessica Dee Humphreys specializes in international humanitarian and children’s issues. Her work (as author as well as ghostwriter) has appeared in publications such as the New York Times, Maclean’s, Canada’s History magazine, the National Post, and the Globe and Mail. She has a master’s degree in English literature from Queen’s University, and she began her career at the United Nations Development Fund for Women. The books she has written specifically for children are Child Soldier: When Boys and Girls Are Used in War and The International Day of the Girl: Celebrating Girls Around the World.
Jessica lives with her family in a big city most of the time. But sometimes they live on a tiny island near the woods, where she rereads To Kill a Mockingbird every summer while lying in a hammock.
Rona is a dynamic national leader who has received many awards for her advocacy and role in public policy. During her tenure as Leader of Canada’s Official Opposition, she gained the respect of parliamentarians of all political stripes, and led the Conservative Party of Canada to the highest membership in its history and set a new tone by becoming the first leader of the Conservative Party to back equal marriage and march in a gay pride parade.
Rona is a passionate advocate for women in Canada and around the world and led the global movement to create the “International Day of the Girl” at the United Nations. Later this fall, she will be featured in the UN Women’s “She Innovates” campaign. Rona recently launched “#SheLeads”, a non-profit foundation in Alberta focused on encouraging women to run for office and participate in public life. She also created and co-chairs the She Leads Economic Council of Alberta, a high-powered group of women corporate leaders who provide non-partisan economic advice to high-ranking government and political officials.
She has spent her life passionately fighting for disadvantaged women and girls. She was one of the champions responsible for ensuring that aboriginal women in Canada were finally granted equal matrimonial rights. She successfully fought for the creation of a Canadian refugee program to bring Yazidi women and girls who have been sexually enslaved by ISIS to safety in Canada, working alongside Nadia Murad who recently won the Nobel Peace Prize.
Simone Shin is an illustrator, graduated from Boston University and Art Center College of Design. She works out of her home studio based in the San Francisco Bay area.
Editorial clients include The New York Times, Harvard Business Review, Wired, INC, Real Simple, Vegetarian Times, The Stranger, Fine Cooking, Cricket, Ensign, Sierra Magazine, 5280, Shambhala Sun, Westchester, St. Anthony’s Messenger, Rethinking Schools and more.
Children’s book publishers include Random House Schwartz and Wade, Simon & Schuster Beach Lane Books and Little Simon, FSG Macmillan, Lee and Low books, Kids Can Press, Star Bright Books, Capstone Publishing and Lerner Publications
Simone’s artwork has been selected for Society of Illustrators annuals 57, 52, and 51 (Receiving a Gold Medal in Uncommisioned work for SI51) and in The American Illustration 28 and 27 annuals. It has also been recognized in Creative Quarterly 28, and featured in Proxart Magazine, at Urban Outfitters and on BOOOOOM. For a full list of past gallery showings please email.