Pink is Not a Color (Lindsay Ward)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Pink is Not a Color by Lindsay Ward, an identity-affirming follow-up to This Book is Gray.

Seeing her friends the Primary and Secondary colors setting up for a party, popular Pink offers to help. She’s excited to hear about the festivities for the upcoming “Rainbow Extravaganza,” and wonders why she’s never heard of it before. The answer is, as Orange notes, a bit awkward: Pink is technically not a color of the rainbow. This sends Pink for a loop; she’s never really thought about her place in the color spectrum before, and it’s confusing to realize that she is not a rainbow color. After learning a bit more about tints (her classification) and shades from Brown, she feels better, yet still confused. Does being a tint make her less important than the primary colors? At last, she runs into Gray – an achromatic color and subject of the previous book in the serious – and confesses to having a “midcolor crisis.” Will Pink ever find her place in the world of color?

A creative look at identity. Based on the very real debate as to pink’s classification as a color, which the author-illustrator gives a little background on in the author’s note, Ward manages to weave a fascinating and approachable consideration of what our identities mean to us, and how our self-concept can relate to and be informed by them. Like many who can have their self-image shaken when exploring their identities, Pink struggles with the idea that she may be a “less important” color, or even not a color at all. Remembering how much joy she brings to people helps her remember her worth, and it’s honestly very touching. I especially liked that Ward mixed in some less-expected uses for the color Pink for the character to feel proud of, like dinosaurs, soccer balls, and a microscope; while Pink uses she/her pronouns, it’s good to remember that the actual color has no gender. In addition, there’s a beginner lesson in here on color theory, and one that even many adult readers will find enlightening. The length is perfect for a storytime, and JJ really enjoyed it. A very cool and creative way to explore an important message, and we loved it. Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by a representative of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

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