Rare is Everywhere
Rare is Everywhere is a children’s book about unusual animals like blue lobsters, spotless cheetahs and white tigers.
The point, according to the book jacket, is to teach children “about diversity and how our differences make us spectacular.” I love this! And I love that proceeds from the book are donated to the Rare Disease Foundation. The pictures are BEAUTIFUL and there are interesting facts about each of the featured animals and a page of jokes at the end.
Overall, it’s a good book!
I think it could have been a bit more explicit in the messaging and I thought the rhyming was a bit forced and cheesy at times, but we liked it!
I didn’t LOVE it when I first read it because I thought it fell short of making the connection from unusual animals to the human experience. The intended message seems to be that physical differences and disability are part of the spectacular diversity of humans, just like these cool animals are part of the spectacular diversity of the animal family, and there are lots of different kinds of animals with rare features so of course there are humans with rare characteristics too.
This awesome message comes across pretty weakly, in my opinion. To be fair, my eleven-year-old got it right away, but my seven-year-old didn’t make the connection on his own—he was focused on the cool animals.
I like that the book defines rare as being “different in a special way,” and it does say, at the very end,
So if you ever feel different, like a white spirit bear, You don’t have to worry, because… Rare is EVERYWHERE!
This is great for all kids to hear, but especially those with a physical difference/disability. I wish it went a bit farther to say, “if you see a kid who seems ‘different,’ like all of these amazing animals, be friendly!” but I’m still glad it’s part of our book collection.
Rae is a mom of three whose eyes were opened to the beautiful diverse disability community (that she previously ignored!) when her daughter was diagnosed with Down syndrome. She is learning to be an ally by listening to people with disabilities and reading/watching their books, blogs and movies, and by going to as many trainings as she can. Rae is a part time international public health practitioner who likes yoga, loves the beach, and used to cook (she never cleaned). She occasionally dabbles in textile arts.
Meriah Nichols is a career counselor. Solo mom to 3 (one with Down syndrome, one gifted 2E). Deaf, with C-PTSD and TBI, she’s also a gardening nerd who loves cats, Star Trek, and takes her coffee hot and black.