cover image I Am Perfectly Designed

I Am Perfectly Designed

Karamo Brown, with Jason “Rachel” Brown, illus. by Anoosha Syed. Holt, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-250-23221-2

The culture adviser of Queer Eye teams up with one of his sons in a tribute to both the parent-child relationship and the process of growing up. “Perfectly designed” serves as the book’s refrain, as the father assures a confident boy that he has all that it takes to explore and succeed in the world, even when the boy gets “mad, or sad, or confused.” Told in two voices, the narrative’s tone is upbeat and earnest—maybe, at times, a little more so than necessary—but the authors make room for some mild family playfulness. Father and son recall going as waffles and (organic) maple syrup for Halloween, and as readers see a series of family photos arrayed on a table, the son notes, “When I was a baby, I looked just like you.... Only I had no hair, and you had lots. Now,” referencing the older Brown’s trademark bald pate, “it’s the opposite.” Illustrations by Syed (Bilal Cooks Daal) have a wide-eyed, Disney animation pep and exude a breezy spirit of inclusivity—the end pages depict the protagonists surrounded by a wide range of happy couples and families (and the rest of the Fab Five). Ages 4–8. [em](Nov.) [/em]