Ladybug Nominee

Julian is a Mermaid
Author/Illustrator: Jessica Love
ISBN: 978-0763690458
Publisher: Candlewick (April 23, 2018)

While riding the subway home from the pool with his abuela one day, Julián notices three women spectacularly dressed up. Their hair billows in brilliant hues, their dresses end in fishtails, and their joy fills the train car. When Julián gets home, daydreaming of the magic he’s seen, all he can think about is dressing up just like the ladies in his own fabulous mermaid costume: a butter-yellow curtain for his tail, the fronds of a potted fern for his headdress. But what will Abuela think about the mess he makes — and even more importantly, what will she think about how Julián sees himself? Mesmerizing and full of heart, Jessica Love’s author-illustrator debut is a jubilant picture of self-love and a radiant celebration of individuality.  

About Jessica Love
Children’s Book Podcast: https://lgbpodcast.libsyn.com/jessica-love

Big Ideas: Empathy

Questions & Talking Points:

Vocabulary: Abuela, Mermaids, Mijo, 


Companion Titles:

  • Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman; pictures by Caroline Binch (Dial Books for Young Readers, 1991)
  • Be a Friend by Salina Yoon (Bloomsbury, 2016)
  • Bee-Wigged by Cece Bell (Candlewick, 2008)
  • Jamela’s Dress by Niki Daly (Farrar Straus Giroux, 1989)
  • Lucia the Luchadora by Cynthia Leonor Garza; illustrations by Alyssa Bermudez (POW!, 2017)
  • Sparkle Boy by Lesléa Newman; illustrations by Maria Mola (Lee & Low Books, 2017)

Other Links and Resources:
This is one of ten titles nominated for the 2019 Ladybug Picture Book Award. This info sheet post was created by Deborah Dutcher, Youth and Adult Services Librarian, NHSL and Karen Landsman,  Library Media/Tech Integration Specialist, Hooksett School District. 

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