The Day You Begin

[bowker-title isbn=”9780399246531″ summary=”

“There will be times when you walk into a room and no one there is quite like you.”


This powerful sentence is how Jaqueline Woodson begins her beautiful children’s book THE DAY YOU BEGIN, a #1 New York Time bestseller. Winner of the National Book Award, three-time winner of the Newbery Honor, and and the 2018-2019 National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, author Jacqueline Woodson is undoubtedly one of the greatest writers of our time. She has an immense gift for writing stunning prose that is accessible for children. Woodson’s writing is so unique because she does not compromise her style of writing when writing books for new and young readers. She writes: “Rigoberto. From Venezuela, your teacher says so soft and beautifully that your name and homeland sound like flowers blooming the first bright notes of a song.” Exquisite, lyrical sentences like this are excellent to help kickstart young readers’ love of good literature.


THE DAY YOU BEGIN is a fun story that packs a powerful message. Woodson explains that the day you truly begin living is the day that you realize that even though you may be different from everyone else, once you find the courage to share your story, the world will create the space or you that you deserve. And that finding friends like you is nice, but friends who are completely different are also great fun. With Woodson’s words and Lopez’s marvelous illustrations, they are able to convey that feeling that being on the outside is scary, but once you start to share your stories, others will listen, and you will feel less alone.


Perfect for kids ages four to eight. New readers are destined to fall in love with Woodson’s storytelling abilities. The beautiful, yet accessible language is sure to appeal to children, along with the colorful and endearing illustrations by Rafael Lopez, a two-time Pura Belpre Illustrator award winner.

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  • “Woodson catches the uncertainty, even fear, that comes with new situations. But her lyrical language also captures the moment when confidence sparks and friendships are born. . . . The bold, bright artwork features a diverse cast of kids. . . . The important message plays out in a striking design that mixes the everyday with flights of fancy. Woodson, a recent National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, is one of kidlit’s brightest stars, and this should find lots of eager hands.”—Booklist 

    “What will it take for a child who feels different to share her stories? . . . Like Woodson’s memoir Brown Girl Dreaming, this story places great value on literacy, reading, and imagination. The matte-finished pages feature illustrations in vivid, brilliant colors, with repeated appearances of flying birds and lush, twining vines and flowers.”—Horn Book