Hello, friends! Our book today is Don’t Touch My Hair! by Sharee Miller, a fantastic lesson in consent and body autonomy.
Aria has a full head of dark, soft, beautiful curls, and she loves them! Others love them too; the problem is, they love them so much that they always want to touch her hair, even without asking first. Aria HATES this – she tries to dodge their fingers, but no matter what she does or where she goes, someone wants to feel her curls. Even going underwater, or high in a castle tower, or to another planet are no escape – there are still mermaids, dragons, and aliens who don’t respect her space. Finally, Ari learns that to get others to stop, she must stand up for herself: she firmly shouts “Don’t touch my hair!” Then she explains that if someone wants to touch her hair, they must ask first – and she always has the right to refuse. She’s happy walking around town again, now that her friends and neighbors understand her boundaries, and as always, she’s proud of her curls.
LOVE. Teaching important lessons in consent and agency, the ecstatically colorful illustrations and fierce, self-possessed protagonist carry the story through fun and fantastic locations while keeping the core emotions and concepts grounded in reality. One spread that features Aria’s attempts to evade her admirers – surrounded by reaching disembodied hands while she cowers, dodges, and fends then off in turns – perfectly embodies the discomfort, anger, and feeling of being trapped this behavior can create. It’s a wonderful message – not only for curly-haired kids but all children – that others should respect our body autonomy, and that if if something makes you feel uncomfortable, you have a right to say no. The length was great, and JJ loved it. A book for every little one (and big one!) to read, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!