Eyes that Kiss in the Corners - Review

 


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January 5 

Synopsis: 

A young Asian girl notices that her eyes look different from her peers'. They have big, round eyes and long lashes. She realizes that her eyes are like her mother’s, her grandmother's, and her little sister's. They have eyes that kiss in the corners and glow like warm tea, crinkle into crescent moons, and are filled with stories of the past and hope for the future.


Drawing from the strength of these powerful women in her life, she recognizes her own beauty and discovers a path to self love and empowerment. 


This powerful, poetic picture book will resonate with readers of all ages and is a celebration of diversity


Overview: 

  • A picture book that is both stunning and lyrical, telling a story about diversity and loving yourself as you are.

  • Shares the same spirit as Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry

  • This book is a perfect for teaching young readers to be confident and to not judge others who look different.


Review:

This is a beautiful book celebrating Asian culture. The book hones in on the beauty that is the character's eyes, how they are just like her other family. members. The close relationships between her and her family members brings a lot of warm fuzzy feeling. The words are irresistible and the illustrations paint a story of love that is emulates such brightness and empowerment. The book is relatable in so many ways to students, but as an #OwnVoices title it will bring so much comfort to those who need it. This book is an affirming story for Asian American children. I love the idea of pairing with Where Are You From? and Hair Love that Jillian Heise suggested.


About the Author:

Joanna Ho is passionate about equity in books and education. She has been an English teacher, a dean, and a teacher professional development mastermind. She is currently the vice principal of a high school in the San Francisco Bay Area. Homemade chocolate chip cookies, outdoor adventures, and dance parties with her kids make Joanna’s eyes crinkle into crescent moons.

Additional forthcoming titles include:

·        Playing at the Border: A Story of Yo-Yo Ma, illustrated by Teresa Martinez (Picture Book, Fall 2021) – a timely and timeless story that honors immigrants and inspires action, recounting Ma’s performance of Bach’s cello suites at the border between Texas and Mexico in 2019.

·        The Silence That Binds Us (YA, Summer 2022) - After her popular older brother’s death by suicide, racist accusations are hurled against 16-year-old May, her Chinese American parents, and other Asian families for putting too much “pressure” on their kids. May attempts to challenge the racism and ugly stereotypes through her writing, only to realize that she still has much to learn and that the consequences of speaking truth to power run much deeper than she could have foreseen. 

·        One Day, illustrated by Faith Pray (Picture Book, Winter 2023) - a tender ode from mother to son that weaves in nuanced themes of anti-toxic masculinity that will empower both readers and listeners to be more fully themselves. 





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About the Illustrator:

Dung Ho was born and raised in Hue Imperial City, Vietnam, where she studied graphic design at the Hue Arts University. She finds inspiration in nature—the beauty of plants, flowers, and leaves. She also loves to draw interesting characters with unique personalities. Now she lives in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, where she continues to learn and develop her art, something she loves doing. When she’s not drawing, she loves spending time cooking (eating), watching movies, and tending her plants



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