Book review: Marley Dias Gets It Done and So Can You!, by Marley Dias

Dias, Marley. Marley Dias Gets It Done and So Can You! Scholastic Press, 2018. 187 pgs. $14.99. ISBN 9781338136890. Ages 10+. P7Q8.

When teenager Marley Dias expressed frustration at not seeing characters she could identify with in the books assigned at school (books about girls of color), her mom challenged her to do something about it. She took up the challenge, and the #1000blackgirlbooks campaign was the result: she identified and collected 1000 books with black, female characters, and helped get the books into the hands of others. Marley Dias Gets It Done and So Can You! is a readable, personal description of her life, her family, and her approach to activism, and is full of good advice and humor. She talks about using social media to engage others and build interest, about research techniques, about the importance of literacy, about evaluating resources, and a hundred other things. While the focus is on African American girls, any other young person who has felt marginalized or left out will find it useful and inspirational. The book is bright and cheerful, with engaging photos of Marley.

VERDICT: This book is an important tool for young people who are realizing how powerful their voices can be when they are motivated to make change. It seems especially timely after the Florida school shooting and the intense public reaction from youth across the nation that resulted. I think school and public libraries should have this in their collections.

June 2018 review by Carol Schramm.


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