About the Book
Mila is a young girl with a strong sense of purpose. She also listens and pays attention to the words and thoughts of wise advisers, like her parents and teachers. Through everyday actions imbued with kindness and consideration, Mila is intent on fostering positive change in her community and across the globe.
#GrowYourCircle is a trailblazing graphic novel for children 6-10, their parents and teachers. The book nurtures children’s innate sense of purpose and helps build strong, positive leadership skills
#GrowYourCircle, by Professor Stork, is a graphic novel. Graphic novels are comparable to comic books but differ from them in that they are standalone storylines with comic-type pictures which include either an individual frame or multiple panels.
We meet Mila, who possesses a superpower, the Superpower of Purpose, despite not being a superhero. Thus begins the story of a little girl whose life is affected by the arrival of a new girl in her class at school. When Mila is hesitant to approach her new classmate, Mila’s mother offers essential support and invaluable assistance.
After taking her mother’s advice to heart, Mila allows her mother to post her experience online, where it becomes overwhelmingly popular, going viral. Mila and her pals are shocked to find they have done something admirable and worthy, unintentionally sparking a movement.
The author does a great job of demonstrating the idea of purpose, which is highlighted by mentions of Mila’s heroes: Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist; Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States; Martin Luther King, an American Baptist minister and activist and Greta Thunberg, a Swedish environmental activist.
As the topic develops, readers like you and me, as well as Mila’s classmates, learn more about different nations and develop an appreciation for their diversity. Mila also learns more about her new classmate’s culture, too.
I believe the target audience of 6 to 10 year olds will connect with the story. Many children have new students enter their classroom, and some readers will have been the newcomers. #GrowYourCircle will provide them with realistic, useful and immediate remedies and solutions for the feelings of anxiety, shyness and the host of other emotions they may experience in circumstances similar to Mila’s.
The illustrations are bright and vibrant and do a respectable job of illuminating the subject. The bright red high-top shoes and the swirly dress caught my attention in particular. The circles or bubbles gave depth to the concepts the characters voiced in the story. However, I felt that the illustrations were rather one-dimensional and lacked “life.”
By and large, #GrowYourCircle offers advice and provides encouragement for times one is in an awkward or uncomfortable and discomfiting situation, something that should appeal to the age group it is intended for. In addition, the theme of purpose cements the reasons why we should each grow our own circle.
I received an advance review copy for free from BookSirens, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
About the Author
Professor Stork is on a mission to write and publish books that help children build and nurture self-worth, creativity, compassion, leadership skills, and a sense of purpose. He believes that children are the catalyst for positive change and that reading is a way for them to begin the journey leading to a fulfilling, purposeful life.
Parents and educators can help support their children by introducing them to books with positive messages.