Children Literature: I Have the Right to Save My Planet by Alain Serres (2021) Review

Empowering message every child should hear

I Have the Right to Save My Planet is a beautiful, mindful, deep book which is fully accessible to children. Through Alain Serres words and Aurélia Fronty’s Illustrations are empowering. Shelley Tanaka did a wonderful job translating this book. I could feel the essence and the impact of this book.

The representation in the images and the candid way it tells children they can be the change they want to see are powerful. This book also doesn’t shy away from exposing things that the next generation are inheriting as a burden. It is true that we have done irreparable harm to the environment and each other in the past half century. However, I have the Right to Save My Planet is educational and offers solutions, and I appreciate it immensely for focusing on the positive.

I am dating myself, but I remember when the UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child released their children’s version through UNICEF and my world was SHOOK. I was very young and sheltered but I remember 1) crying because I had just found out I was privileged and not all children had access to the most basic of human rights and 2) being determined to empower and protect children, even though I was a child myself. This led me to a life of volunteer work and career with children. I still believe they are agents of change and it is up to us to let them know that.

I mentioned this for two reasons. The first is that I truly believe this book will do for our children what UNICEF’s Child version of the Convention on the Rights of the Child did for me. The other reason I mentioned that is because of this sentence in the book: “I have the right to do all this because I am a child”. It gave me goosebumps. It spoke to my child self.

I think it will be a great book for emergent projects, especially for children in grades 1-3. I think that a couple of pages can be introduced as points of discussion and origin of projects. I work with younger children, but I will still purchase this book to share with them (and a copy for my 9-year-old son). It is never too early or late to bring awareness and help shape positive world citizens.

Thank you, Groundwood Books, NetGalley and Alain Serres for an advanced copy of I Have the Right to Save My Planet in exchange for my honest review. #IHavetheRighttoSaveMyPlanet #NetGalley

Representation 10

Story 10

Illustration 10

My total rating: 5

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