Author: Thompkins-Bigelow, Jamilah
Abdul loves telling stories but thinks his messy handwriting and spelling mistakes will keep him from becoming an author, until Mr. Muhammad visits and encourages him to persist.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 2.90
Points: .5 Quiz: 516431
Kirkus Reviews (03/15/22)
Booklist (+) (03/15/22)
The Hornbook (00/03/22)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 03/15/2022 *Starred Review* This engrossing story has a compelling message for kids struggling with writing, as well as for all kids stuck in a “mistakes are bad” mindset. Abdul is a Black boy (and presumably Muslim, although it is never explicitly stated) living in an American big city. He loves regaling the other kids at school with stories about what goes on in his diverse neighborhood, but when it comes to writing these stories down, the “scribbly, scratchy, scrawly” ABCs he writes go backwards or won’t stay on the line, leaving him feeling frustrated, ashamed, and convinced that writing stories is not for him. Then a professional writer named Mr. Muhammad visits class and urges the students to “write new stories with new superheroes.” Abdul makes so many mistakes that he rips up his writing and ends up hiding under his desk. When Mr. Muhammad shows Abdul his own incredibly messy notebook, Abdul is inspired to change his approach from trying for perfection to trying a process of writing “a mess” and then “a less messy mess.” Rose's bright digital illustrations are wonderful at depicting out-of-control letters and erasures, even showing Abdul’s legs being erased at his low point. At the end, Abdul reads his story to his very receptive class and realizes that he is, indeed, a writer. Inspiring for all students. - Copyright 2022 Booklist.