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The Storybarn Selects… From The Reader Bookshelf

Written by Lily Kehoe, 18th October 2022

As we continue to explore The Reader Bookshelf we've asked members of our Children & Young People Team to talk about their favourite children's books from the collection.

This month, our Community Engagement Coordinator, Andie Griffiths talks to us about Glow by Ruth Forman. 


The cover of Glow by Ruth Forman draws you in with a stunning illustration of a young, black boy with gleaming eyes that are warm, loving, and perhaps even a little mischievous.

Using word bundles and unconventional grammar, the narrative invites playfulness and would be great for a young one learning their words. The words are joyful and vibrant, almost poetic, hopping you from page to page. Yet the illustrations are like a giant hug, filled with warmth, and gently drawing you into every page. The more I turned, the more I smiled.

There is a sense of safety, love and calm about Glow, beautifully portraying the innocence of a child who finds magic in the gold of the sunset, the bubbles of a bath, and the stars in the night sky. The character is sweet and gentle, full of life and love, which is so rarely how black boys are portrayed in society and feels an important shift.

A story about childhood, positivity, and finding the beauty in the world around us. Glow is a warm reminder not only that we are special, but also to notice the magic and joy in even the smallest of moments.

I hope all the young black children who read this book can see themselves in the sweetness of this character, and who, like him, see that they also shine just as bright, and are just as special, as the stars in the night sky.

Words by Andie Griffiths.

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