Stehlik, Tania Duprey. Violet. Illustrated by Vanja Vuleta Jovanovic. Book Review.

Click here to buy Violet
The cover attracted me to this book. Campy, colorful drawings of butterflies, leaves, flowers, and designs surround the word Violet and the picture of an extremely skinny little girl whose skin is purple. The story is fairly simple. Violet begins school and is nervous about making friends. The first day goes well until her father comes to pick her up. Then a girl asks Violet why she isn’t blue like her father. At home, Violet’s mother, who is red, explains that Violet is a mixture of the two of them.

This is a gentle story that tackles a sensitive subject, mixed race children, with a light, positive tone. It also manages to sneak in a little lesson on mixing primary colors to get secondary colors.

I think this would be an excellent book for all children, not just those from mixed families. Every child should be made aware of comments that may hurt the feelings of children who see themselves, or are seen as, different than the majority. As well, the story shows that the child of mixed race parents can be both beautiful and precious.
The drawings are lively and fun. The length and vocabulary level would be suited to children in second grade but younger children would enjoy hearing the story read by an adult. I think this would be a wonderful addition to the books parents read to their children before they begin school.


Bonnie Ferrante: Books For All Ages