From the joyous to the poignant, poems by award-winning, diverse poets are paired with images by celebrated illustrators from similar backgrounds to pay homage to what is both unique and universal about growing up in the United States. Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander takes us on a riotous ride through good times and sad spent with his extended family a journey perfectly captured by Coretta Scott King Award winner Michele Wood s vibrant overflowing and overlapping images. Pura Belpré Award winner Margarita Engle shares happy memories of learning to embroider, accompanied by fine artist and printmaker Paula Barragán s colorful graphic representation of a granddaughter and grandmother at work. Bestselling author Nick Bruel talks about his confusion over having to define himself by a single racial label, which is brought to life by newcomer Janine Macbeth s reflective image of herself trying to figure out her own mixed ancestry.
Together these heartfelt poems and captivating illustrations shine a light on the rich diversity of people in our nation as well as the timeless human connections and experiences we all share. Readers of any age and background will find much that sparks their memories and opens their eyes.