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You hold me up
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This vibrant picture book, beautifully illustrated by celebrated artist Danielle Daniel, encourages children to show love and support for each other and to consider each other's well-being in their everyday actions.

Consultant, international speaker and award-winning author Monique Gray Smith wrote You Hold Me Up to prompt a dialogue among young people, their care providers and educators about reconciliation and the importance of the connections children make with their friends, classmates and families. This is a foundational book about building relationships, fostering empathy and encouraging respect between peers, starting with our littlest citizens.
Trade Reviews
School Library Journal Review
PreS-Gr 2-This evocative picture book is a lovely meditation on kindness and respect. Simple declarative statements belie important cornerstones of humanity: "You hold me up when you comfort me"; "when you laugh with me"; "when you listen to me." Daniel's stylized watercolor paintings show children interacting in positive ways with peers, adults, and family members. Warm, gentle scenes include a rosy-cheeked boy sharing an apple with a younger friend, an elder and two children drumming and singing beneath a starry sky, and a little girl cradled in her mother's embrace. A strong sense of community runs through the poetic text and illustrations and is encapsulated in the final phrase, "We hold each other up." Dedicated to the "children, families and staff of Aboriginal Head Start programs," an author's endnote sheds light on the indignities and abuse suffered by generations of Indigenous Canadians. VERDICT Powerful and significant, this is a must-have addition to most collections. Perfect for one-on-one and small group sharing.-Linda Ludke, London Public Library, Ont. © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Booklist Review
A simple text provides examples of how people can love, support, and respect each other in a variety of ways. Each activity involves two or more people, with many parts of the text ending with me to emphasize that no one is above anyone else. The admirable message is summarized in the last three lines, you hold me up / I hold you up / we hold each other up. The multimedia, folk-art-style illustrations depict people with varying skin tones and types of hair, all against simple backgrounds, which keeps the message clear and direct. Many different kinds of people older, younger, women, men are depicted, communicating that everyone has something to offer and everyone needs something else. The straightforward message appears simple on the surface, but there is deeper meaning here: The Canadian author, a woman of Cree, Lakota, and Scottish ancestry, explains in a note that past laws adversely affected indigenous peoples in general, and children in particular, and her book is part of a larger effort toward healing and reconciliation.--Whitehurst, Lucinda Copyright 2018 Booklist
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