Book presentation: If my hair could talk by Dayan Kodua

Illustrated by: Nicole Gebel

The history

The book tells the story of a black girl named Akoma who one day returns from her school trip sad because someone grabbed her hair without asking during the trip. Her friends try in vain to cheer Akoma up, so she tells her about the incident at home. In addition to sadness, the incident also means that Akoma is now ashamed of her hair. But her parents come up with nice ideas to comfort Akoma and make her proud of her Afro hair again. 

 The book tells an everyday story for many black people. Even in adulthood, you are constantly confronted with people who touch your hair without asking. And every time you stand there dumbfounded and ask yourself the question: How do I react to this now? 

That's why I found the story very touching. She not only explains to Black children why people touch their hair without asking, but also how to deal with it and stand up for themselves. But what's more important is that the book shows the beauty of Afro hair. Various Afro hairstyles are beautifully illustrated. The book's appendix also covers the history of Afro hair and several different styles. 

What I was also very happy to see was the diversity of all the characters in the book. Not only Black children are represented, but also POCs.

The book is therefore recommended for all children, especially black children. The book is important for black children because it creates self-confidence and strengthens “black self-confidence”. Children in particular quickly and strongly notice that they are disadvantaged in a white majority society, but cannot yet explain why this is the case. That's why it's important for them to have media in which they are represented in order to strengthen their self-esteem.

This book is also very important for non-black children because it brings understanding for black people and helps children grow up without racism . It shows in a beautiful way what the limits of black people are and explains a lot about black hair culture. 

I also wish I had had a book like this when I was a child. It is also recommended for Black adults because it is a very beautiful and touching read that leaves the inner child happy. 

In summary, this children's book is for children and adults: pure empowerment!
Happy Black History Month!

The author: Dayan Kodua

Dayan Kodua is a German-Ghanaian author who is also an actress, speaker and founder of Gratitude Publishing. Her literary passions primarily include children's books, because she believes it is important to make children aware of their inner strength. Kodua is also committed to BiPoc (Black, Indigenous & People of Color). That's why in 2014 she published the illustrated book “My Black Skin: Schwarz. Successful. German” into life. With her Gratitude publishing house, she would also like to give other authors the opportunity to publish various stories. Dayan's children's books like If My Hair Could Talk and Odo also represent Black children, bringing diversity to a white children's book world.